Forget all about Anne Hathaway, Jim Sturgess, Rafe Spall and co. That lot are yesterday’s chip paper. The stars of the 2011 One Day film have been superseded by this new bunch, now bringing David Nicholls’ hit 2009 romance novel to life for a new 14-episodes Netflix series. Adapted by Wild Rose and Three Girls screenwriter Nicole Taylor, One Day is a bittersweet love story set across two decades. It’s the story of Emma and Dexter, whose first night together at their university graduation sparks almost two decades of will-they-won’t-they romance.
Read on to see cast members from This is Going to Hurt, White Lotus season two, Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, Poldark and more.
Ambika Mod as Emma Morley
Sketch and improv comedian Ambika Mod made her name in 2022 BBC One drama This is Going to Hurt. Mod played Shruti, a trainee doctor working on the obstetrics ward alongside Ben Whishaw as disillusioned obs & gynae doctor Adam. Before that, Mod played Una in the second series of Sky’s Billie-Piper-starring I Hate Suzie Too, as well as popping up in Trying and The Mash Report. It’s her role as Emma Morley, the clever, funny, conscience-led co-lead in One Day though, that will really cement her star status.
Leo Woodall as Dexter Mayhew
Actor Leo Woodall will be unforgettable to fans of The White Lotus series two as Jack, the handsome, young ‘nephew’ of Tom Hollander’s Quentin. The Hammersmith-born actor has also appeared in Russo Brothers movie Cherry, Prime Video action-fest Citadel and two episodes of 2022’s Vampire Academy. In One Day, he plays wealthy, handsome Dexter – the other half of Emma’s romantic story.
Amber Grappy as Tilly
Actor-singer Amber Grappy is a LAMDA graduate who already has a bundle of regular roles under her belt, including in creepy Sky series The Baby, BBC Three comedy Wrecked and Sky Comedy rom-com Smothered. In One Day, she plays Emma’s best friend from university, a role played by former Doctor Who actor Jodie Whittaker in the 2011 film adaptation of the story.
Johnny Weldon as Ian
Johnny Weldon makes ironic casting as the painfully unfunny wannabe stand-up comedian Ian in One Day, because the man himself is a hoot – as illustrated by his many one-man sketches detailing the life of an actor (see them on X/Twitter here). As well as the obligatory appearances in Doctors and The Bill, Weldon has popped up in Channel 4 comedy Stath Lets Flats, Sky’s Breeders, BBC One’s The Outlaws, and even an episode of HBO’s House of the Dragon.
Essie Davies as Alison Mayhew
Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries star, actor and singer Essie Davies is a big Australian name who’s appeared in countless TV shows and films. They include modern horror favourite The Babadook, The Slap, The White Princess, The True History of the Kelly Gang and many more. Game of Thrones fans might well recognise her for the role of Lady Crane, opposite Maisie Williams as Arya Stark. In One Day she plays Dexter’s loving mother Alison.
Tim McInnerny as Stephen Mayhew
Blackadder fans need no introduction to Tim McInnerny, who appeared across the cult BBC comedy’s various historical series as Lord Percy, Captain Darling and more. People who watch films and TV in the UK at all in fact, need no introduction to McInnerny – so named because he’s Mc-in everything, from National Treasure to Game of Thrones to Johnny English Reborn to Strangers and soon, to Gladiator 2. In One Day he plays Dexter’s slightly uptight father, loving husband to Alison.
Eleanor Tomlinson as Sylvie
You’ll have seen Tomlinson as Demelza in Poldark or in the BBC’s adaptation of H.G. Wells’ The War of the Worlds, or in Stephen Merchant comedy-drama The Outlaws. She was recently in cancelled Joss Whedon series The Nevers, Sky Brit space adventure series Intergalactic, and psychological thriller The Couple Next Door. In One Day, she plays Sylvie, the daughter of a wealthy upper class family with which Dexter becomes entangled.
Joely Richardson as Helen
Another familiar face here, playing Sylvie’s mother Helen in the Netflix series. Joely Richardson has been a fixture on the big and small screen since the early 1980s, but is perhaps best recognised for the role of Julia in long-running series Nip/Tuck. She recently popped up in Netflix’s Neil Gaiman series The Sandman, and will soon be seen in Guy Ritchie’s The Gentlemen, a TV sequel to his 2019 movie of the same name for the streamer, as well as Sally Wainwright’s new Disney+ series Renegade Nell.
Toby Stephens as Lionel
Fans of pirate drama Black Sails will recognise Captain Flint, while fans of YA series Alex Rider and Percy Jackson and the Olympians will know Toby Stephens as baddie Damian Cray and Poseidon respectively. Stephens is also firmly embedded in the James Bond universe, having voiced 007 in multiple radio plays as well as appearing as Graves in Die Another Day. In One Day, he plays Sylvie’s fairly odious father, husband to Helen.
Will Hislop as Toby Murray – The sketch comedian and actor (and son of Have I Got News for You‘s Ian Hislop) plays the warm-up guy for Dexter’s late-night TV show.
Mark Rowley as Mr Godalming – Finan in The Last Kingdom plays the headteacher at the school where Emma works in the 1990s.
Brendan Quinn as Callum – Irish actor Quinn plays Dexter’s university friend Callum.
Adam Loxley as Graham – Sandylands and My Cousin Rachel actor plays Tilly’s boyfriend “Acid-house Graham”.
Rebekah Murrell as Suki – In My Skin and The Pact actor Murrell plays Dexter’s co-presenter on TV show “Get In!”
One Day is available to stream now on Netflix.