Tom Hardy’s ‘Taboo’ Could Reinvent Television

By November 14, 2016


There is a bit of mystery surrounding the upcoming FX series Taboo outside of the fact that it involves Oscar-nominated actor Tom Hardy.

Steven Knight, the creator of the series – and the man behind not only the recent Netflix series Peaky Blinders, but also the popular game show Who Wants to be a Millionaire – told Slashfilm the look and feel of the series was actually the brainchild of its two primary directors, Anders Egström and Kristoffer Nyholm.

“Wait until you see it. I don’t think anything has ever been like it before. Both directors, Kristoffer and Anders, were brilliant. It’s going to be interesting.

Nyholm directed most of the first two seasons of The Killing – not the American remake, but instead the Danish original. Egström’s work to this point has been in Finnish television with series like Jordskott and Thicker Than Water.

taboo-inset111416The real success, however, is truly on the back of Hardy, who also serves as an executive producer (along with director Ridley Scott). Hardy, according to Slashfilm, helped create the series with Knight and Hardy’s father, Chips Hardy, who himself did a little television writing in the 1980s.

In the show, the younger Hardy plays James Keziah Delaney, who returns home to London from Africa in 1814 to inherit what’s left of his father’s shipping empire. Yet, he discovers his father’s legacy is a “poisoned chalice,” where Delaney is basically forced to save his own life.

“If you do anything with a really brilliant actor like (Hardy), you know what he’s capable of, and you know where there’s no point in going in certain directions. With Taboo, knowing he was there and had this great cast around him, you could really … with the dialogue, it’s really enjoyable to have turn of phrase you wouldn’t have anyone else say. There can be so much going on inside his head that you know that’s going to be reflected on the screen.”

Although Hardy has a successful movie career, including his work in The Revenant last year that earned him is lone Oscar nomination, he hasn’t ignored television at all. He had a recurring role in Peaky Blinders throughout the show’s second and third season as Alfie Solomons.

Before that, Hardy played Freddie in the 2009 in the British miniseries The Take. He also recorded credits in 2007’s Oliver Twist and Meadowlands.

Of course, his first role was in HBO’s Band of Brothers in 2001, which led him to roles in Black Hawk Down and Star Trek: Nemesis a year later.

pryce-inset111416Hardy will share the screen in Taboo with Game of Thrones actor Jonathan Pryce, House of Cards‘ Michael Kelly, Scottish actor David Hayman, and another Game of Thrones alum, Oona Chaplin, whose character had an untimely demise at the Red Wedding.

FX hasn’t said when Taboo will premiere. But expect the eight-episode first season to debut by spring on the cable channel, as well as on the BBC in the United Kingdom.

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Michael Hinman

Michael Hinman

Managing Editor at GeekNation
Michael began what has become nearly 19 years of entertainment reporting as the founder of SyFy Portal, which would become Airlock Alpha after he sold the SyFy brand to NBC Universal. He's based out of New York City where he is the editor of a Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper in the Bronx.