Britannia

Sky Atlantic's epic drama about the Romans invading ancient Britain, starring ZoŽ as vengeful Queen Antedia, returned for a second series on 7 November. Both series are available via Sky and NOW TV.

Worzel Gummidge

ZoŽ plays eccentric aristocrat Lady Bloomsbury Barton in the second episode of the BBCís new adaptation of Barbara Euphan Toddís classic childrenís stories, which aired just after Christmas. It's available via the BBC iPlayer.

Shadow and Bone

ZoŽ recently finished filming this major new fantasy series for Netflix, based on Leigh Bardugoís novels. She's been cast as Baghra, a ruthless teacher. The release date hasn't yet been announced.

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ZoŽ's 'lovely' portrayal of Joan Littlewood is among Babs' highlights

8 May 2017 20:25

ZoŽ's portrayal of visionary director Joan Littlewood in Babs, which was broadcast last night on BBC One, is being praised in the press and by TV viewers. She gave 'a lovely chain-smoking performance,' writes the Guardian enthusiastically in a review describing the Barbara Windsor biopic as a 'heartwarming' 90-minute drama.

Despite mistaking Littlewood for a cleaner when arriving at a theatre in late 1950s London, the young Windsor dazzles the director with her raw talent. 'Where have you been all my life?' Littlewood wonders during the particularly memorable audition scene. Babs made clear that although Windsor didn't always see eye to eye with her mentor, who favoured an unusual, experimental approach to rehearsing and staging plays, the director's mixture of encouragement and tough love helped the starlet to shine.

'No line in [Tony] Jordan's beautifully constructed script had more resonance than Littlewood's harsh advice [to Windsor] concerning the Carry On films: ''If you do it, all you'll ever be is the sexy little blonde,''' the Telegraph points out in its favourable review.

Littlewood is described by Windsor's agent in Babs as 'the most innovative theatre director this country's ever seen'. Appropriately enough, the programme itself is also highly original. It plays with our sense of time and place, as if an elaborate dream is unfolding. While that theatrical style wasn't to everyone's taste, I thought it worked wonderfully well. Babs' originality, as well as ZoŽ's delightful, nuanced performance, impressed many other viewers too, perhaps most notably the actor Larry Lamb (Windsor's former EastEnders co-star) and charity Tree Aid, of which ZoŽ has long been a patron.

Entertaining and moving, Babs is currently available to pre-order on Region 2 DVD before being released on 15 May. For roughly the next four weeks, you can also watch the programme online via the BBC iPlayer.

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