Danny Dyer and David Tennant to star in Jilly Cooper adaptation Rivals

The Disney Plus series will also feature Aidan Turner and Alex Hassell

Danny Dyer and David Tennant lead an adaptation of Jilly Cooper's Rivals.
Danny Dyer and David Tennant lead an adaptation of Jilly Cooper's Rivals. (Disney)

Danny Dyer and David Tennant have been announced to lead the cast of Disney+'s Jilly Cooper adaptation Rivals.

Set in 1980's England, Rivals will depict a rivalry in the world of television between a Member of Parliament and the controller of a TV franchise.

Current Doctor Who Tennant will play Tony Baddingham, the controller of the TV station while his rival Rupert Campbell-Black will be portrayed by Alex Hassell, best known for his performances in Violent Night, The Tragedy of Macbeth and Cowboy Bebop.

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 12:  Danny Dyer the Press Room at the Virgin TV BAFTA Television Award at The Royal Festival Hall on May 12, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images)
Danny Dyer is set to star in an adaptation of Jilly Cooper's Rivals. (Getty Images)

Dyer will play Freddie Jones, a millionaire who made his fortune in electrics while Poldark star Aiden Turner will play TV presenter Declan O'Hara.

The extensive ensemble cast also includes Emily Atack, Katherine Parkinson, Claire Rushbrook, Rufus Jones and Nafessa Williams.

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Commenting on the all-star casting, Cooper said in a statement that the show “features some of the best acting talent that the British Isles has to offer. I cannot wait to be on set and see them bring the characters I love so much to life.”

Rivals is currently in production in the UK with Dyer and Tennant spotted on set in Gloucestershire sporting extensive hair changes.

Rivals is the second book in Cooper's Rutshire Chronicles series which revolve around the exploits of Cambell-Black and various upper class families in often racy scenarios.

Jilly Cooper at the Oldie of the Year Awards 2021
Jilly Cooper's work has rarely been adapted for screen. (Alamy)

Despite the popularity of Cooper's books, there have been few adaptations of her work. The most notable of which was a 1997 adaptation of The Man Who Made Husbands Jealous starring Hugh Bonneville, Coronation Street star Stephen Billington and Donna King.

Dyer has been very busy since leaving EastEnders over Christmas. Earlier this month, he co-hosted Cheat a Netflix game show along with Ellie Taylor and he will also be seen later this year in Channel 5 drama Heat where he plays a character caught up in a bushfire.

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