Kiera Knightley will no longer star in Apple TV+ show 'The Essex Serpent'

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Apple TV+ Apple TV interface (Image credit: Joseph Keller / iMore)

What you need to know

  • British star Kiera Knightley was set to be part of the upcoming show "The Essex Serpent."
  • But Knightley will no longer be part of the project.
  • Concerns about childcare and other problems seem to have put paid to her making an appearance.

Kiera Knightley was supposed to make her Apple TV+ debut as the star of the upcoming "The Essex Serpent," but that will no longer be happening according to a new report.

According to a new Daily Mail report, Knightley has withdrawn from the project over concerns relating to childcare during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Apple TV+ production had been scheduled to begin filming in six weeks. But the crew learned they were being stood down and the drama was being put on 'hiatus' after mother-of-two Miss Knightley told producers she would no longer be taking part.

The report says that Knightley was likely set to "receive a six-figure salary for taking part" in the show, but I suspect she'll be just fine without it.

She will be missing out on quite a project, though. Deadline announced her involvement in August with plenty of talent involved throughout the project.

Set in 1893, the book was published by Serpent's Tail, an imprint of Profile Books in 2016 and was named Book of the Year by the British Book Awards that year. Knightley, Barnard and Symon will exec produce alongside Jamie Laurenson, Hakan Kousetta, Patrick Walters, Iain Canning and Emile Sherman. Andrea Cornwell will serve as producer. The streamer has ordered the project to series from See-Saw Films, the company behind The King's Speech and Top of the Lake. It will be directed by Dark River and The Selfish Giant director Clio Barnard and is written by Mrs Wilson writer Anna Symon.

Who should Apple TV+ hire as Knightley's replacement? Let me know in the comments below!

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.