Skip to main content

'Danny Boy' — everything you need to know about the BBC factual drama

Anthony Boyle as Brian Wood in Danny Boy
Anthony Boyle as Brian Wood in Danny Boy. (Image credit: BBC / Gareth King)

Danny Boy is an emotional, feature-length factual drama coming from the BBC later this year. From the description alone, it sounds like it might well be one of the best BBC dramas this year.

Focussing on one soldier’s plight as he’s embroiled in a public scandal over his conduct in Iraq, Danny Boy is a thought-provoking drama that asks questions about what we have to ask of those who fight for our country.

It's written by BAFTA-winner Robert Jones (Murder, Party Animals), and directed by Sam Miller, best known for his work on I May Destroy You and Luther.

Here’s everything you need to know about Danny Boy.

Danny Boy release date 

We don’t have an exact release date for Danny Boy just yet, but we do know it will air in the UK on BBC2 and BBC iPlayer in Spring later this year. 

Is there a trailer for Danny Boy? 

Not yet! We’ll keep this article updated with the latest info about the upcoming drama as it comes out! 

Danny Boy cast 

Anthony Boyle leads the cast as soldier Brian Wood, with Toby Jones featuring as human rights lawyer Phil Shiner. 

Also featured are: Alex Ferns as Gavin, Brian’s ex-soldier father, Pauline Turner as Brian’s mother, Margaret, and Leah McNamara as Lucy, Brian’s wife.

The BBC recently released the first images from the drama, which you can see below:

Image 1 of 3

Anthony Boyle as Brian Wood in Danny Boy

Anthony Boyle as soldier Brian Wood. (Image credit: Gareth King (BBC).)
Image 2 of 3

Toby Jones as Phil Shiner in Danny Boy.

Toby Jones as Phil Shiner. (Image credit: Gareth King (BBC).)
Image 3 of 3

Danny Boy cast: Pauline Turner, Anthony Boyle, Leah McNamara and Alex Ferns. (L-R)

L-R: Margaret (Pauline Turner), Brian Wood (Anthony Boyle), Lucy (Leah McNamara), and Gavin (Alex Ferns). (Image credit: Gareth King (BBC).)

What’s the plot? 

Danny Boy is a factual drama that follows a young soldier called Brian Wood. The drama follows Brian as his world is turned upside down; once a decorated war hero, he ends up accused of committing war crimes in Iraq by determined human rights lawyer, Phil Shiner.

The show then sees the two men going head to head, jumping from the so-called Checkpoint Danny Boy on the battlefield to the courtroom. Brian and Phil’s legal and moral fight becomes the subject of one of Britain’s biggest ever public inquests, known as the Al-Sweady Inquiry.

After years of investigation following Brian’s time in the field, Danny Boy sees the troubled soldier begin to crumble under the colliding pressure all around him. 

How long is Danny Boy? 

Danny Boy is one, 90-minute long, episode.