BBC One has revealed the cast for EastEnders writer Tony Jordan’s new one-off film about the life of Barbara Windsor.
The 90-minute drama “will tell the heart-warming story of Barbara Windsor, the Cockney kid with a dazzling smile and talent to match.”
Jaime Winstone and Samantha Spiro will play Barbara Windsor alongside two child actors. Dame Barbara Windsor will also be making a cameo.
Winstone commented: “It is a complete honour to play Dame Barbara Windsor. It is a role I have manifested for years and am so excited to step into her national treasure shoes! I have always been a huge fan of Barbara and to be able to play her throughout this stage in her life is gonna be very special. I can’t wait to start filming”
Spiro – who previously portrayed Barbara in the 1998 stage play Cleo, Camping, Emmanuelle and Dick and in the television production of Cor Blimey! – added: “It’s absolutely thrilling to be playing Barbara again. Tony Jordan has written a beautiful celebration of her life, but it’s not your usual biopic, lots of surprises! She is so adored, so I hope we get it right and that Barbara herself loves it!”
The official synopsis reads: “Preparing to perform in the theatre one cold evening in 1993, Babs takes us on a journey of all the people and events that have shaped her life and career: taking us through fifty years from 1943 to 1993, she contemplates her lonely childhood and WW2 evacuation, her complicated relationship with her father, her doomed marriages, capturing the attention of Joan Littlewood and becoming the blonde bombshell in the Carry On films.
“Babs, ever the consummate professional, never lets her fans down whatever her personal anguish and steps on the stage to rapturous applause. A finely woven script merging theatre and film, the story unravels, full of heart and heartbreak – with a touch of sauciness thrown in.”
Windsor said: “I am truly thrilled to know that the BBC have secured two such talented and established actresses to portray me in their new biopic of my life. Sam Spiro has already proved herself playing me on stage and TV to great acclaim, as well as, having her own incredible career. Sam will now be playing me at a later time in my life which will be a new challenge for her and one she will undoubtedly achieve. And then to be lucky enough to have one of today’s current dynamic actresses playing the younger me fills me with such excitement, especially knowing that it is Jaime Winstone. Boy am I a lucky lady!”
Babs begins filming soon and will air on BBC One in 2017 as Windsor approaches her 80th birthday.
Are you looking forward to Babs? Let us know below…