New BBC drama Life sees Doctor Foster characters make a comeback

BBC/Drama Republic
BBC/Drama Republic

Characters from Doctor Foster will feature in new BBC drama Life.

The six-part series, which will air on BBC One tonight will see Victoria Hamilton reprise her role as concerned neighbour Anna from the smash drama that originally aired in 2015.

Now going by the name of ‘Belle’, Anna is making a new start for herself after she caught her ex-husband Neil cheating on her again, which fans will remember from the second season of Doctor Foster.

Adam James, who played philandering Neil, will also feature later on in the series, which was written by Doctor Foster writer Mike Bartlett.

Victoria Hamilton stars as Anna/Belle (BBC)
Victoria Hamilton stars as Anna/Belle (BBC)

Set in Manchester, Life follows the stories of the residents of a large house divided into four flats.

Belle/Anna’s story sees the pilates teacher’s neatly ordered life turned upside down by the unexpected arrival of her chaotic 15 year-old niece Maya, played by Erin Kellyman.

Alison Steadman stars as Gail in the new series (BBC)
Alison Steadman stars as Gail in the new series (BBC)

The series also features Gavin and Stacey star Alison Steadman, who plays Gail. Married to Henry (Peter Davison), Gail is about to celebrate her 70th birthday when a chance encounter throws her whole life into question.

Adrian Lester stars as happily married David; while things are good with Kelly (Rachael Stirling), he is conflicted by temptation when he meets the impulsive Saira (Saira Choudhry) on holiday.

Elsewhere, heavily pregnant Hannah (Melissa Johns) - who is happily coupled up with safe and stable Liam (Joshua James) - has her plans upended by the return of Andy (Calvin Demba), with whom she had a passionate one-night stand nine months previously

Singer Elaine Paige and Sticks and Stones star Susannah Fielding will also feature in key roles in the drama.

While this isn’t quite a Doctor Foster spin-off, this may be the closest we get to seeing Gemma Foster back on our screens, after Suranne Jones ruled out ever returning to the role.

“I love [writer] Mike Bartlett, I love [the producers] Drama Republic,” she told Radio Times. “Series one was amazing, series two, equally, peaked at nearly ten million viewers and pushed in crazy directions. But I think Gemma’s done.”

Life airs on BBC One tonight at 9pm

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