Aidan Turner to Star as Leonardo da Vinci


Poldark‘s Aidan Turner has been cast as Leonardo da Vinci in a new project from creator Frank Spotnitz (Medici, The Man in the High Castle, The X-Files).

Turner is set to head up the international cast for Lux Vide and Big Light Productions for Leonardo (working title), the first project to hit the airwaves from The Alliance, the co-production group formed by Italy’s RAI, France Télévisions and Germany’s ZDF. The series attempts to unlock the secrets of this singular character in a “fresh and truly original way.”

Spotnitz and Steve Thompson (Sherlock, Vienna Blood, Deep State) are co-creators. Daniel Percival (The Man in the High Castle, Death Comes to Pemberley) is directing.

Spotnitz said: “Capturing the character of Leonardo has been one of the most fascinating and exciting challenges of my career. It’s hard to fathom that a man this extraordinary could even have existed, let alone the human impulses that drove him to achieve such extraordinary things. It’s been enormously rewarding and an absolute joy collaborating with Steve Thompson, Daniel Percival and our partners at Lux Vide and RAI to bring Leonardo to life.”

Thompson added: “Leonardo is a captivating genius and it has been a thrill to explore his work and his character. Each of his works has a uniquely fascinating story behind its creation. I am delighted to have collaborated with Frank and our creative team to tell his extraordinary story.”

Luca Bernabei, producer and CEO of Lux Vide, commented: “Who was Leonardo? A painter? Not only that. An inventor? Not quite. A scientist? An engineer? Not only. With the audacity that only people of the television industry have, we tried to englobe all of his many faces, giving life to a young Leonardo and not the old man with a beard we all are used to see. He too had a first job, he too had a master, Verrocchio (and later we meet his disciples), he too had frustrations and failures. He too had to deal with the price of ambition when, at the court of Ludovico Sforza, he finds his consecration… In each episode, we focus on a masterpiece, an invention, a project, without having the ambition to cover his infinite genius (it would be impossible) but with the goal to have the viewer deeply involved in the adventure of an incomparable man.”