Aaron Jeffery portrays Mark “Chopper” Read in the 2 part miniseries, which includes incidents following the feature film starring Eric Bana. Vince Colosimo, Kevin Harrington and Debra Byrne also reprise former Underbelly roles.
“As a character in the show that we’re creating, he did some brutal, horrific things to people,” said Jeffery. “But there was also a flipside to his personality that could be gentle, kind, and loving. And that juxtaposition of the human spirit is something that I find fascinating.”
Nine’s co-heads of drama, Andy Ryan and Jo Rooney, said: “As a hardened gangster and loving family man, “Chopper” Read was one of Australia’s most complex and compelling crooks. Prepare to be shocked and entertained as Aaron Jeffery brings a whole new dimension to the Chopper legend, supported by many of Australia’s finest actors.”
Starring award-winning actor Aaron Jeffery (Wentworth, McLeod’s Daughters, Water Rats) as Chopper, an outstanding cast will feature alongside him, including two-time Logie Award winner Michael Caton (The Castle, Packed to the Rafters) as Chopper’s father, Keith, Todd Lasance (The Vampire Diaries) as Chopper’s nemesis, the gangster Syd Collins, and Ella Scott Lynch (Love Child) who will portray his second wife, Margaret, with whom he shared a love that defied obstacles and lasted decades.
The impressive cast also includes Zoë Ventoura as Chopper’s first wife, Mary Ann, Jane Allsop, Reef Ireland, Alex Tsitsopoulos and Anna Bamford, with original Underbelly alumni Vince Colosimo and Kevin Harrington returning as Alphonse Gangitano and Lewis Moran, and Debra Byrne reprising her portrayal of Judy Moran.
Mark “Chopper” Read established a reputation of infamy by becoming one of the toughest criminals in Australian history. But in order to secure the affections of the woman he loves, Chopper fights to go straight. Yet the sins of his past, his ego and an ongoing feud with Syd Collins will make his hopes of a straight life a dangerous and near-impossible enterprise. Underbelly Files: Chopper explores the collision of Chopper’s two competing identities – the myth and the man.
Underbelly Files: Chopper is a Screentime production in association with the Nine Network with production investment from Screen Australia and Film Victoria.
8:30pm Sunday February 11.
9pm Monday February 12 on Nine.