BBC drama bosses want to turn Lily Allen into a TV star after stage show success

HER pop career may have faltered but lily Allen's acting has impressed West End audiences – including some BBC bigwigs.

I understand they fancy putting her in a major TV drama after she won praise in West End play 2:22 A Ghost Story.

The move would see her follow in the footsteps of dad Keith Allen,  who starred as serial killer John Cooper in The Pembrokeshire Murders, and little brother Alfie Allen, who shot to fame as Theon Greyjoy in Game Of Thrones.

A TV insider said: “Lily has made quite a big impression with one or two key decision-makers at the corporation who were pleasantly ­surprised by how good she was on stage.

Now they are on the lookout for a role which she might be perfect for — though the final decision rests with casting directors on productions.

“But if her turns on the West End stage are anything to go by, she stands a good chance of getting a great role.”

Lily has just finished a lengthy run in 2:22 A Ghost Story at the Noel Coward ­Theatre in London, alongside EastEnders actor Jake Wood.

Making her West End debut, she played the supernatural thriller’s  central character Jenny, who reckons her new home is haunted and is determined to make her husband and friends believe her.

­Critics have hailed her performances as “spell­binding”, “strong” and “slick”.

Lily enjoyed a top recording career, writing a book and launching a sex toy range. She had her own BBC Three chat show, Lily Allen And Friends, which ran for just one series.

Let’s hope any return to the Beeb is more successful.

Finally fun and games for ITV

IT is third time lucky for ITV as the broadcaster bids to get its new Olympics-style challenge show off the ground.

The Real 2020 Games has been rebranded The Real Games 2022 and will air next spring.

Insiders revealed bosses are now booking talent for the show after the previous two series were halted because of the pandemic.

A source said: “The Real Games is steaming ahead and, should all go well, will air next year. It’s been a nightmare for those working on it because it was pushed back from 2020, then last year it was shelved.

“ITV is confident it will get off the ground and the stars are being booked now.”

Previously, brothers Adam, Ryan and Scott Thomas were booked to appear on the series, which was set to be hosted by Holly Willoughby and Freddie Flintoff.

With Holly and Freddie being two of the busiest presenters in the business, I hope they can work the show into their hectic schedules.

Bill Fellows on the cobbles

BILL FELLOWS, who plays the villain in Ted Lasso, is joining the cast of Coronation Street.

In the hit Apple TV+ comedy Bill plays George Cartrick, the sacked boss of fictional Premier League side AFC Richmond, who is replaced by title character Ted (Jason Sudeikis), an inexperienced US coach.

Dan just needed a toon-up

SHE’S one of the most famous Geordie women on the box, so Vicky Pattison knows an authentic Newcastle accent when she hears one.

The 2015 I’m A Celeb winner has taken a sly dig at Chester-born 007 actor Daniel Craig for his attempt at a Tyneside twang in 1996 cult BBC drama Our Friends In The North.

Vicky told the That Gaby Roslin ­Podcast: “I prefer his pants in James Bond in his walking-out-the-sea scene.

"But I’ve got to be honest, it wasn’t bad. I’ve heard far worse – most people make it sound Jamaican.”

Dragon low on sugar

AS a TV dragon, you’d expect fiery talk from Deborah Meaden, so it shouldn’t be a surprise to learn she’s flamed rival show The Apprentice.

Recording Richard Herring's ­podcast, she said she thought Dragons’ Den was better than Lord Sugar's rival BBC business competition.

Deborah also doubted he would get paid more than the hundreds of thousands he invests in the companies he creates with the winners.

She said: “Well, that ­definitely does not apply to Dragons’ Den. Alan did come and pitch to the Den once for Children In Need and he was oddly nervous.”

He was probably just angry at her for not calling him Lord Sugar.

Hairs 'n Graces for Gill

AS Margaret Thatcher in hit drama The Crown, above, Gillian Anderson spent most of her time with a huge wig ­teetering on her head.

Now she’s back with an even bigger bouffant in period drama The Great, which looks at the rise to power of ­Russia’s famous leader Catherine the Great, played by Elle Fanning.

In the second series of the Channel 4 show, she plays Joanna, the rather grand mother of the future empress and mother-in-law of Emperor Peter III.

It’s a stark ­contrast to her bohemian character as sex ther­apist Jean ­Milburn in Netflix’s ­Sex Education – partly because she’s a foot shorter ­minus that hair.

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