Sheffield star Sean Bean involved in Covid scare during filming of TV prison drama Time

Sheffield star Sean Bean had to miss 10 days of filming during the new TV drama Time.

Lewis Arnold, who directed the three episodes of the show which was made for the BBC, said the production had to carry on without many of its stars, including Sean, following a health scare.

He said: “We were filming in Liverpool during the height of the pandemic, we had to change the plan every day.

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“We lost Sean Bean for 10 days and all of our main core cast because we had an incident with Covid.”

Lewis said the cast was “all fine”.

In the series, Sean Bean plays a teacher, Mark Cobden, jailed for a killing a man who then embraces his punishment. But he is unprepared for the harshness and brutality of prison life and has to learn fast.

Line of Duty star Stephen Graham is principled prison officer Eric, who tries to protect his inmates but faces a major dilemma when dealing with one of his most dangerous prisoners.

The series, which has been described as difficult to watch because of its prison setting, reunites the two actors who co-starred in an episode of Jimmy McGovern’s TV series Accused. It looked at what led to different people to commit the crimes they were facing in court.

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Sean played a transvestite man who starts a relationship with a taxi driver, played by Stephen Graham.

Jimmy McGovern told why he wrote the series with the actors in mind.

“Because I just think that they’ve got faces you’d die for, you know? Full of life; full of compassion and humanity.

"I think if you’re going to write about a prison, that’s the kind of thing you need, isn’t it? Compassion, humanity, experience all in the lines of those faces.”

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Sean has said of the role: “Getting to be involved in a Jimmy McGovern drama again is a real privilege and it will be great to be reunited with Stephen.

"Mark Cobden is another of Jimmy’s complex and superbly-written characters and I am looking forward to bringing him to life on screen.”

Time also features actors Siobhan Finneran, Sue Johnston, David Calder, Nadine Marshall and Hannah Walters, who is Stephen Graham's wife.

Time starts on BBC One on Sunday, June 6 at 9pm.

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