Highwaywomen, magical spirits, and more await in Renegade Nell, a new adventure series coming March 29 to Disney+.
The show, about a young woman who becomes 18th-century England’s most notorious outlaw, comes to us courtesy of Happy Valley creator Sally Wainwright and stars Derry Girls‘ Louisa Harland.
“[Nell] is a character that Sally has had in her mind for I think 15 years,” Harland said at the Television Critics Association (TCA) winter press tour. She and her co-stars Alice Kremelberg, Nick Mohammed, and Joely Richardson previewed Renegade Nell at TCA and also dished on their excitement about the show’s many stunts.
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What’s Renegade Nell about?
Nell Jackson (Harland) is courageous, quick-witted, and on the run for a murder she didn’t commit. Soon, she finds herself on the unlikely path to becoming a famed highwaywoman, all while continuing to seek justice against the man who wrongly framed her.
Renegade Nell takes a turn for the supernatural when magical spirit Billy Blind (Ted Lasso‘s Nick Mohammed) appears, enhancing Nell’s fighting capacities to near-invincible levels. With the help of Billy Blind, her sisters, and some surprising allies, Nell realizes her destiny is bigger than she ever imagined.
While the show does contain some stylized violence, it is geared towards a younger audience. “Every member of the family will connect to this,” Harland said, adding that “it is really, really refreshing to see such strong, funny, flawed women portrayed onscreen.”
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Renegade Nell brings big stunts and fight scenes.
Renegade Nell‘s fight scenes and action set pieces meant that cast members had to train hard and learn new skills to pull everything off. For the cast, Harland especially, this included everything from fight training to wire work to riding lessons — often in period costumes, corsets and all.
“She’s like the female Tom Cruise,” Richardson said of Harland at TCA. “She can do every stunt.”
The stunt work also played a huge role in attracting Mohammed to the project. “It’s always been a dream of mine [to be on wires],” he revealed. Later, he added that Renegade Nell was “a world away from anything else I’ve ever done.”
Renegade Nell was created by Sally Wainwright, with Ben Taylor (Sex Education) directing. In addition to Harland, Kremelberg, Mohammed, and Richardson, it stars Frank Dillane, Ényì Okoronkwo, Jake Dunne, Bo Bragason, Florence Keen, Adrian Lester, Pip Torrens, and Craig Parkinson.
Renegade Nell premieres March 29.
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