Jodie Whittaker has hit out at the way the criminal justice system is failing women ahead of her role in series two of Time on BBC1.
The former Doctor Who star plays Orla O’Riordon – a woman who loses everything after being sent to prison for a non-violent crime. And in a new interview for The Big Issue, Whittaker said the drama, written by Jimmy McGovern and Helen Black, had opened her eyes to injustice and the way too many women are leaving prison into homelessness.
“The prison system pushes more people onto the streets,” said Whittaker. “All we hear are reports that prisons are on their knees. Surely there’s a better system.”
Series one of Time won a Bafta for Best Mini-Series while Sean Bean, who starred alongside Stephen Graham, won Best Actor. Only Happy Valley’s Siobhan Finneran, as prison chaplain Marie Louise, returns from the original cast as the action transfers to a women’s prison, with The Last of Us star Bella Ramsey and Tamara Lawrance (The Silent Twins) cast alongside Whittaker.
The series asks important questions about the criminal justice system and its impact on women. Whittaker admits that her research into women in the prison system fed directly into her performance in Time.
“What reading about this does, which is really good from an acting perspective, is it makes you so rageful you can tear into every scene full of rage and frustration,” she said.