Netflix has picked up SCOOP, a new biopic movie taking a look behind the scenes of the BBC Newsnight interview with Prince Andrew. An all-star cast has been assembled, and production has begun. Here’s what you need to know.
The project has been in development for some time before being attached to Netflix.
Deadline first reported in 2022 that the script was being developed by Peter Moffat, with the project initially planned to begin filming in November 2022 and had eyed Hugh Grant eyed for a lead role (which he subsequently denied).
Per Netflix, the film is bound exclusively to them as a Netflix Original and has started production in the United Kingdom.
Here’s what else you need to know:
What’s Netflix’s Scoop about?
The new movie will be a “behind-the-scenes account” of the famous interview that aired on BBC Newsnight on November 16th, 2019. Prince Andrew was interviewed by veteran journalist Emily Maitlis and addressed recent and growing allegations that connected him to Jeffrey Epstein.
This movie takes a look at how the BBC scored the interview, which had profound effects on the future role of Prince Andrew within the Royal Family and the ongoing case surrounding convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
The movie will be based on the account provided by producer Sam McAlister and her memoir called Scoops: Behind The Scenes of the BBC’s Most Shocking Interviews.
Per GoodReads, here’s what the book, first published in July 2022, is about:
“She is the woman who clinched the 2019 interview with Prince Andrew, described as ‘a plane crashing into an oil tanker, causing a tsunami, triggering a nuclear explosion’.
After 12 years producing content for Newsnight, Sam McAlister reflects with candour on her experience, sharing not just the secrets of how the best news gets made, but also the changes to the BBC, the future of ‘mainstream media’ in the age of clickbait and the role of power and privilege in shaping our media landscape.”
Netflix’s logline for the project expands further, talking about the themes you can expect from the forthcoming movie:
“SCOOP is the insider account of the inner workings of the Palace and the BBC, twin bastions of the British Establishment, spotlighting the journalists whose tenacity and guts broke through the highest of ceilings – and into the inner sanctum and calculations of a man with everything to lose.”
As a primer, the full interview remains available on the BBC News YouTube Channel, with has over 7.2 million views and can be found embedded below:
Who is in the cast for Netflix’s Scoop?
Four cast members have been confirmed to star in the movie thus far.
- Gillian Anderson (Sex Education, The Crown, The Fall) will play Emily Maitlis in the movie who is Newsnight’s former lead presenter and now a host for the podcast The News Agents for Global Radio.
- Keeley Hawes (Bodyguard, Stonehouse, It’s a Sin) will play Amanda Thrisk, the former Private Secretary to Prince Andrew.
- Billie Piper (I Hate Suzie, Doctor Who) will play Sam McAlister, the BBC producer who scored the booking.
- Rufus Sewell (Netflix’s upcoming series The Diplomat, The Father, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel) will star as Prince Andrew.
Who’s behind Netflix’s Scoop?
Emmy and BAFTA winner Philip Martin is attached to direct the project. He’s previously worked on Night Sky for Prime Video and Catherine the Great for HBO.
Martin is also no stranger to covering the Royal Family on screen, given he’s served as executive producer on multiple seasons of Netflix’s multi-award-winning series The Crown. He’s also directed multiple episodes.
In a statement, Martin commented on the new movie, saying:
“I’m thrilled to be directing this film for Netflix and – together with an extraordinary cast – to be bringing Sam McAlister’s revelatory insider’s account to the screen. Uptempo, immersive and cinematic, I want to put the audience inside the breath-taking sequence of events that led to the interview with Prince Andrew – to tell a story about a search for answers, in a world of speculation and varying recollections. It’s a film about power, privilege and differing perspectives and how – whether in glittering palaces or hi-tech newsrooms – we judge what’s true.”
SCOOP is produced by Hilary Salmon and Radford Neville (Luther, MotherFatherSon) for The Lighthouse Film & Television, with Sanjay Singhal (Trouble at Topshop) for Voltage TV.
Are you excited about the upcoming Netflix movie on the Prince Andrew BBC Newsnight interview? Let us know in the comments down below.