2023 seems to be shaping up to be a good year to be a tennis fan. While there are the usual four grand slam competitions to look forward to, some exciting tennis-focused TV shows are coming out this year, including Amazon Prime’s new drama, Fifteen Love.
Portraying just how intense the tennis world can be, Fifteen Love will debut this year, and while a trailer has yet to be released, the idea of a high-stakes sports drama in a game that’s less explored on-screen certainly has us interested.
The basic plot of the series certainly seems quite timely, focusing on a young tennis player who shot to fame after a breakout performance, much like Emma Radacanu’s stunning US Open win in 2021, and Coco Gauff’s rise to prominence at Wimbledon a few years before that.
The show’s protagonist, Justine Pearce, reached the semi-finals as a 17-year-old of the French Open, with a coach who was prepared to not play by the rules, which paid off. Unfortunately, Justine withdrew from the competition with a serious injury, enough to cause her to have to drop her professional tennis career altogether, in front of millions of viewers. The series catches up with her half a decade on from the traumatic event, in her early 20s and still involved in the sport at her former academy. But things once again become upended when she makes an allegation against her old coach.
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Justine is being portrayed by Ella Lily Hyland, a virtually unknown actor who appeared in the miniseries Intruder in 2021, but looks to make a breakout performance in Fifteen Love. Opposite her, and bringing the show’s main star power, is Poldark and The Hobbit’s Aiden Turner, who’ll be playing her coach Glenn Lapthorn.
Both Justine and Glenn shared an intense rapport and friendship, which the rest of the world saw as one of the keys to the success they produced on the court. It’s unclear yet as to what the allegations are exactly, but the Amazon show will explore the pressures and pitfalls of being a young athlete on the world stage- which tennis stars like Naomi Osaka have brought attention to in recent years. The British show will also feature talents like Jessica Darrow (Encanto), Anna Chancellor (The Crown) and Lorenzo Richelmy (Marco Polo.)