Filming for John le Carré’s The Little Drummer Girl started on 8th February 2018. We caught up with the crew when filming the six-part mini-series in South West London’s Putney area.

Little Drummer Girl - Front of location House
Little Drummer Girl – Front of location House with production in progress at South West London’s Putney ©2018 Stephen Payne
John le Carre’s The Little Drummer Girl - book cover
John le Carré’s The Little Drummer Girl – book cover

The Little Drummer Girl is the effective successor to The Night Manager. Both produced by The Ink Factory in partnership with AMC and BBC. The Night Manager was a success with audiences and critics. At the time the production team ideally wanted a sequel. The fact no follow-on book existed and, from we understand le Carré felt the book was self contained, seems to have lead to this dramatisation instead.

A film of The Little Drummer Girl was made in 1984. That starred Diane Keaton, Yorgo Voyagis and Klaus Kinski. The three main stars of the new mini-series are Florence Pugh, Alexander Skarsgård and Michael Shannon.

The Little Drummer Girl story

The story for The Little Drummer Girl has a brilliant young actress Charlie (played by Florence Pugh) on holiday in Greece. There she strikes up an acquaintance with an intriguing stranger. However it rapidly becomes apparent that his intentions are far from romantic…

Big Little Lies – Alexander Skarsgard
Big Little Lies – Perry (Alexander Skarsgård) ©2017 HBO. Alexander has a new role in Little Drummer Girl (2019 tv)

That man is Becker (played by Alexander Skarsgård) who is an Israeli intelligence officer. He entangles Charlie in a complex and high stakes plot. At the route of the problems is a spymaster named Kurtz (who is played by Michael Shannon).

The production, as with the book, is set in the late 1970s. However it also aims to be sharply contemporary. The Little Drummer Girl is an exciting story of espionage and international intrigue. It weaves in a dynamic tale of love and betrayal.

The Putney location is to be the Hampstead house of the story. Check out the video below to see it and the location set-up there.

The Little Drummer Girl actors

Lady Macbeth - Florence Pugh
Lady Macbeth – Katherine (Florence Pugh) ©2016 Sixty Six Pictures

Florence Pugh will play Charlie. Florence has been BAFTA nominated and is known for her role in Lady Macbeth.

Alexander Skarsgård Portrays the main character Becker. Alexander previously starred in the subversive tale of murder Big Little Lies with Reese Witherspoon & Nicole Kidman. He is also known for True Blood and Tarzan.

Michael Shannon will take on the role of Kurtz. Two Academy Award nominations have been marked up by him. Roles in The Shape of Water, Nocturnal Animals and also The Iceman are what Michael is known for.

The Iceman - Poster, Michael Shannon
The Iceman Poster: Richard Kuklinski (Michael Shannon, who also stars in the upcoming The Little Drummer Girl) ©2013 Millennium Entertainment

The Little Drummer Girl Crew

The international thriller marks the television debut of visionary film maker Park Chan-wook. He is know for the movies Old Boy, The Handmaiden and Stoker. The award-winning director, of Korean decent, will helm all six hours. His task is to bring his epic cinematic sensibility to the small screen!

Highly acclaimed cinematographer Woo-Hyung Kim, also from Korean, will work closely with Park Chan-wook. He will help bring a reported ‘soaring cinematic texture’ to Charlie’s journey.

Lucia Zucchetti has the job of editor. A Prime-Time Emmy nomination and a BAFTA Award are his claim to success.

Mike Lesslie and Claire Wilson adapted John le Carré’s book for the screenplay of this six-part mini-series.

The Little Drummer Girl will be shooting on a ‘global scale’ across Europe.

The Little Drummer Girl Location filming