Olivia Cooke as Becky Sharp

Olivia Cooke 

Known for: Cooke’s big break came after she got an agent in Los Angeles and landed a role on the Psycho prequel TV series, Bates Motel.

She has also appeared in movies like The Quiet Ones, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl and the Steven Spielberg sci-fi film Ready Player One.

She plays: Heroine Becky Sharp, a poor orphan who is determined to rise to the top of English society. She is intelligent and cunning and will do anything to get her way.

Michael Palin as William Makepeace Thackeray

Michael Palin 

Known for: Palin is a world-renowned comedian as a member of the group Monty Python.

He is also a travel writer and documentary maker and has appeared in several films including A Fish Called Wanda, Arthur Christmas and The Death of Stalin.

He plays: The novel’s author William Makepeace Thackeray, who appears at the start of each episode like a ringmaster, introducing the next stage of the drama.

Suranne Jones as Miss Pinkerton

Suranne Jones

Known for: Jones got her big break playing Karen McDonald on Coronation Street.

She has gone on to star in several successful TV series, but she is probably best known as Rachel Bailey in Scott & Bailey or Gemma Foster in Doctor Foster

She plays: Miss Jemima Pinkerton, the headmistress of the Academy for Young Ladies where Becky grew up.

Charlie Rowe as George Osborne

Charlie Rowe 

Known for: Rowe started his acting career at the young age of 11, when he played Billy Costa in the 2007 film The Golden Compass.

On TV he played Peter Pan in the fantasy miniseries Neverland and starred in the US shows Red Band Society and Salvation.

He plays: Amelia Sedley’s childhood sweetheart George Osborne who is now a captain in the army. He is rich and handsome, but he is also selfish and vain. 

Claudia Jessie as Amelia Sedley

Claudia Jessie

Known for: Jessie has appeared on several TV shows in the UK including the soap Doctors, the crime drama WPC 56, and the miniseries Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell.

But she is probably best known for playing Detective Constable Jodie Taylor in season 4 of Line of Duty.

She plays: Becky’s kind but naïve friend Amelia Sedley. She has been born into wealth and has long been in love with George Osborne.

Tom Bateman as Rawdon Crawley

Tom Bateman

Known for: Bateman has appeared in the TV series Da Vinci’s Demons, The Tunnel and Jekyll & Hyde.

He also starred opposite Melanie Griffith and Amy Schumer in the comedy film Snatched and played Bouc in the 2017 remake of Murder on the Orient Express.

He plays: The younger son of Sir Pitt Crawley. He is a cavalry officer who is the favourite of his wealthy aunt Matilda.

Martin Clunes as Sir Pitt Crawley

Martin Clunes

Known for: Clunes is a prolific British actor, most recognised for playing Gary in the comedy series Men Behaving Badly and as grumpy Cornwall-based physician Dr Martin Ellingham in Doc Martin.

He plays: Becky’s stingy, dishevelled and lecherous employer Sir Pitt Crawley. He hires Becky to be a governess to his two young daughters.


Johnny Flynn as William Dobbin

Johnny Flynn 

Known for: Flynn stars in the TV comedy series Lovesick and played the young Albert Einstein in the 2017 biographical drama Genius.

He plays: The well-meaning best friend of George Osborne, Captain William Dobbin. He is more of a gentleman than his wealthier friend, but is considered unattractive and awkward. 


Frances de la Tour as Aunt Matilda

Frances de la Tour 

Known for: De la Tour made her name playing Miss Ruth Jones in the TV sitcom Rising Damp in the 1970s.

She also played Madame Olympe Maxime in the Harry Potter movies and Violet Crosby in the sitcom Vicious

She plays: Rawdon Crawley’s very rich, elderly aunt Matilda Crawley. All the Crawleys hope to inherit her fortune upon her death, but Rawdon is her favourite.

Richie Campbell as Sam

Richie Campbell

Known for: Campbell started his acting career on The Bill in 2007.

More recently he played Sergeant Nightingale in The Frankenstein Chronicles and Liam Sutcliffe in the drama Liar

He plays: Sam, a servant who works for the Sedley family. He is the target of several racist remarks throughout the series. 

Robert Pugh as Mr Osborne

Robert Pugh

Known for: Pugh has appeared in many TV series over his more than 40-year career, including Silent Witness, Bleak House, Shameless and The White Queen.

His biggest roles include playing Craster on Game of Thrones, Jack Reynolds on Doctor Foster and Lord Wynnstay in Mr Selfridge.

He plays: George Osborne’s father, also named George. He is a self-made businessman who is determined that his son will marry well – which in his case means for money.

Simon Russell Beale as Mr Sedley

Simon Russell Beale 

Known for: Beale is considered one of the best theatre actors of his generation.

He has appeared in the films Persuasion, Dunkirk, Into the Woods and The Death of Stalin. His TV credits include Spooks and Penny Dreadful.

He plays: Amelia’s father Mr Sedley, who is a successful merchant and investor. He finds himself in some financial strife early on in the series.

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