‘Delia Ballmer’: Anna Maxwell Martin and Sean Evans headline ITV true crime series from ‘The Pembrokeshire Murders’ author

Exclusive: Line of duty Stars Anna Maxwell Martin and Surveillance Actor Sean Evans is set to headline an ITV true crime series about a woman who escapes a near-fatal relationship with a murderer.

BAFTA-winner Maxwell Martin will play Delia Balmer, a woman who falls for murderer John Sweeney (Evans) and overcomes a horrific attack to provide vital evidence in the case against her ex-lover.

Delia Ballmer (working title) is produced by ITV Studios-backed World Productions, which produces bodyguard And Line of duty. Based on Balmer’s book Living with a serial killerThe four-part series was written by Nick Stevens, who wrote the Luke Evans drama Pembrokeshire Murders.

Ballmer, an agency nurse, met Sweeney in 1991 in a London pub. His artistic, anti-establishment persona gave way to a horrifically violent attack on Ballmer, during which he confessed to killing his ex-girlfriend and dumping her body in an Amsterdam canal.

Sweeney was arrested but bailed after a court failure. He pursues Balmer and nearly fatally attacks him before evading capture. Ballmer rebuilt his life before confronting Sweeney seven years later after he was arrested for murdering another girlfriend. His fragile recovery is shattered again when he faces Sweeney in court, testifying for the prosecution.

Simon Heath, World’s executive producer, said: “Delia’s story is a unique and powerful one of a woman who survived horrific violence at the hands of a man who should never have been free to commit his heinous crime. Delia’s story highlights the failure of the legal system to address male violence against women and so sadly resonates even today.”

Stevens described Ballmer as a “hero” who still suffered from PTSD more than 10 years after Sweeney’s conviction. “[She is] A survivor whose determination to do good in life – to dance, to travel, to survive – ultimately outweighs her demons,” added Stevens.

Ken Horn (devil’s hour) producer, while Julia Ford (I know everything about love) indicates. The play was commissioned for ITV by Polly Hill, Head of Drama, and Drama Commissioner Huw Kennyar-Jones.

Distributed by ITV Studios Delia Ballmer. Filming will begin this month and the production has received support from the Welsh Government through Creative Wales.

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