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This England: release date, plot, trailer and everything we know

This England stars Kenneth Branagh and Ophelia Lovibond
This England sees Kenneth Branagh as UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. (Image credit: Sky)

This England (formerly known as This Sceptered Isle) is a Sky Original factual drama that will chart the events surrounding Prime Minister Boris Johnson, the British government, and the country at large as they make their way through the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Michael Winterbottom (24 Hour Party People, The Trip) will direct all six episodes and has co-written the show with Kieron Quirke (Defending the Guilty), and we now know when it will be hitting our TV screens.

Here’s everything you need to know about This England right now.

When is This England on TV? 

We finally know when we can expect to see This England on Sky TV, as Sky has confirmed it's coming to Sky Atlantic and streaming service NOW on September 28 (please note that it was September 21, but has been moved).

As and when we learn any info about an overseas release date, we'll be sure to update this guide.

What is the plot?

Here’s the plot summary from Sky: 

This England will tell the tale of some of the most devastating events to ever befall the United Kingdom, and of a Prime Minister leading in these unprecedented times. 

"The drama will trace the impact on Britain from this once in a generation pandemic, and the response of scientists, nurses, and doctors as they worked tirelessly and heroically to contain and overcome the virus. 

"It is based on the first-hand testimony of people from all walks of life; from Number 10 Downing Street, the Department of Health, The Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE), and from hospitals and care homes across the country."

 Who’s in This England?

Kenneth Branagh, star of stage and screen, will appear in the series as Prime Minister Boris Johnson. A first-look image was released as This England entered production, and the resemblance is definitely uncanny.

Kenneth Branagh as Boris Johnson for This Sceptred Isle.

The first look image of Kenneth Branagh in This England. (Image credit: Sky)

Branagh was most recently seen in Christopher Nolan’s summer blockbuster, Tenet as lead antagonist Andrei Sator, a Russian oligarch who communicated with the future.

Thanks to Deadline, we now know that Ophelia Lovibond (Elementary) will star as Carrie Symonds, Boris Johnson's fiancée. Simon Paisley Day (Brexit: The Uncivil War) will appear as Boris' senior adviser Dominic Cummings and Andrew Buchan plays Matt Hancock, former Secretary of State for Health and Social Care.

Andrew Buchan as Matt Hancock

Andrew Buchan stars as Matt Hancock. (Image credit: Sky)

Is there a trailer for This England?

On August 18, Sky unveiled a new teaser for the show. Beginning with his jubilant celebration over the Brexit vote, it gives us a few snapshots of Boris Johnson's time at the head of government, featuring press events, tender moments with his partner, and the PM's own health scare during the pandemic.

You can also check out the first teaser trailer, where Johnson gives a speech promising "a year of prosperity", below.

Where can I watch it?

This England will air on Sky Atlantic and will be made available for streaming on NOW TV (opens in new tab).

Martin Shore
Staff Writer at WhatToWatch.com

Martin is a Staff Writer with WhatToWatch.com, where he produces a variety of articles focused on the latest and greatest films and TV shows. 

Some of his favorite shows are What We Do In The Shadows, Bridgerton, Gangs of London, The Witcher, Doctor Who, and Ghosts. When he’s not watching TV or at the movies, Martin’s probably still in front of a screen playing the latest video games, reading, or watching the NFL.