First photo of Killing Eve star Jodie Comer in West End theater debut – Deadline

EXCLUSIVE: Killing Eve star Jodie Comer received an instant standing ovation and roars of approval from the audience attending the penultimate preview on Monday night of Prima Face, a one-person play about sexual assault that also marks Comer’s West End stage debut. Above and below are exclusive first-look images from the production.

And what a truly stunning beginning it is. Comer is phenomenal and commands the stage.

The powerful drama, by Australian-based attorney turned playwright Suzi Miller, has its official opening night on Wednesday.

Comer, 29, gives a fearless, faultless performance as Tessa, a criminal barrister who specializes at defending rapists. Tessa, described in Miller’s play as a ‘thoroughbred’ lawyer, has used her skills not just to defend men, but also to denigrate their victims.

She is then sexually assaulted herself and forced to rail against the very system she used to her advantage in the past, where victims of sexual assault are often disbelieved.

Jodie Comer in Prima Facie

Prima Face runs for just nine weeks at London’s Harold Pinter Theatre.
Helen Murray

However, there has already been much chatter about the possibility of it heading to Broadway, plus there’s talk of Miller writing a feature film version.

James Bierman, the play’s producer and general manager through his Empire Street Productions banner, told Deadline that Prima Face has the “potential to be something” and confirmed that he and the production would like to transfer to New York.

However, if time allows, Bierman told Deadline that Comer would like to take the play to Liverpool, her hometown.

“It would be amazing to take it to Liverpool, schedules permitting, and Broadway deserves to see the piece,” Bierman told Deadline. He added that he’d like it to have another limited season in London, where it has been playing to full houses during its 11-date preview run.

Helen Murray

Bierman noted that a play can have a transformative effect and that Prima Face “feels like it can be a really powerful agent” in the discussions about how victims of sexual assault are treated by the police and the courts.

Citing official figures, Bierman said: “That every eight minutes a woman reports a rape in the UK,” but just a tiny percentage of those ended up in court, with a conviction rate of 35%.

Miller told this reporter that her play hinges on the “Yes, the sex happened but was it consensual … or not? It’s her word against his.”

During her legal career, Miller took statements from women who’d been victims of sexual attacks. ”I don’t know of any sexual assault statement that I’ve ever taken where I could ever be convinced that the women were lying,” said Miller.

Prima Facie was first staged in Australia. However, once Comer was cast by director Justin Martin, the decision was made to give Tessa’s voice a Liverpudlian working-class flavor, though in the courtroom scenes the accent is slightly posher.

The National Theater will transmit a performance of Prima Facethat’s being filmed on June 14, and will be transmitted via an NT Live broadcast on July 21.

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