NBC’s adaptation of the Australian miniseries premiered last night to strong ratings, with Thandie Newton taking over the role in the American version, that Sophie Okonedo played in the Australian original.
Titled “The Slap,” the Australian TV mini-series, which co-stars Sophie Okonedo is based on the award-winning novel by Christos Tsiolkas, which traces the shattering repercussions of a single event on a group of family and friends. At an Australian backyard barbecue, a man slaps a child who is not his son. The boy’s parents are so affronted by the assault that they call the police and legal action results, as questions of parenting, the rights of children, race, class, sexuality and the different perspectives of men and women are tackled.
Sophie Okonedo (or Thandie Newton in the NBC remake) plays “Aisha,” and here’s how ABC Australia’s website describes her:
The slap took place at Aisha’s house, during her party for her husband’s 40th birthday. Hugo, the child who was slapped, is the son of one of her best friends, Rosie. On the other hand, Harry, the man who slapped Hugo, is her brother-in-law. She has her own reasons for siding with Rosie, which go far deeper than the slap itself, and threaten to unravel her family. Aisha is married to Hector. She is a woman whose resilience and strength holds her family together. She also is a successful professional woman with her own veterinary business. Entering her forties, she is assailed by doubts about her marriage and future. The slap at the barbecue has left her torn, her loyalties divided between her husband and one of her oldest friends. She fights for what is important to her, but feels like she is losing her grip.
Okonedo co-stars in the mini-series alongside acclaimed thespians in Melissa George, Jonathan LaPaglia, Essie David, Alex Dimitriades, and Anthony Hayes.
The series was nominated for a BAFTA for Best International Program and won 5 Australian Academy of Cinema and Television awards, including Best Miniseries.
Watch all 8 episodes of the original Australian series below: