Cilla becomes biggest ITV drama launch since Broadchurch

The first episode drew 6.7 million viewers

Antonia Molloy
Wednesday 17 September 2014 09:56
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black

Almost seven million people tuned in to watch the first instalment of Cilla, a three-part drama about the Liverpudlian songstress.

An audience of 6.7 million viewed the ITV biopic, which stars Sheridan Smith as “Anyone Who Has a Heart” singer Cilla Black - making it the biggest drama launch since last year’s murder mystery Broadchurch.

That figure accounted for a 29.7 per cent share of the audience between 9pm and 10pm on Monday night. Broadchurch opened to 7.43 million viewers.

The broadcaster confirmed the news on Twitter:

Written by Jeff Pope, the mini-series also stars Aneurin Barnard as Cilla’s husband Bobby and Ed Stoppard as her manager Brian Epstein.

Cilla achieved chart success in the Sixties with number one singles “Anyone Who Has a Heart” and “You’re My World”.

The programme depicts the excitement surrounding the Merseybeat music scene as a yet-unknown Cilla rubs shoulders with the young Beatles.

Smith was widely praised for her performance and has already been tipped for a Bafta.

And she was clearly thrilled by the response, tweeting:

Cilla returns to ITV on Monday at 9pm.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in