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The Serpent FIRST LOOK: Jenna Coleman stars in trailer for BBC drama

BBC One revealed the first look trailer for their new drama The Serpent on Thursday.

The dramatic trailer saw Jenna Coleman star as Marie-Andrée Leclerc, the devoted follower and girlfriend of real-life serial killer Charles Sobhraj, played by A Prophet’s Tahar Rahim, as he targeted Western tourists in the 1970s.

The actress, 34, debuted a French accent in the film in the role as the Bikini Killer’s girlfriend, who failed to leave her murderous other half even after learning of his killings.

The Serpent FIRST LOOK: Jenna Coleman debuted a French accent as she played the girlfriend of Tahar Rahim’s serial killer Charles Sobhraj in the first trailer that was released on Thursday

The tense trailer opens with an older Tahar during a chatshow appearance where he is asked if he was ‘a dangerous man’, to which he answers coldly: ‘The question is whether I committed murder.’

Transporting the audience back to the 1970s, they tease Sobhraj’s first meeting of Jenna’s Marie-Andree at a pool party in Thailand.

Showing his methods of killing, Sobhraj was seen spiking a person’s drink before taking them to a beach, seemingly to murder them.

Drama: The actress portrays Marie-Andrée Leclerc, the Bikini Killer's girlfriend, who failed to leave her murderous other half even after learning of his killings

Drama: The actress portrays Marie-Andrée Leclerc, the Bikini Killer’s girlfriend, who failed to leave her murderous other half even after learning of his killings

Cold-hearted: The tense trailer opens with an older Tahar on a chat show where he is asked if he was 'a dangerous man', to which he answers: 'The question is whether I committed murder'

Cold-hearted: The tense trailer opens with an older Tahar on a chat show where he is asked if he was ‘a dangerous man’, to which he answers: ‘The question is whether I committed murder’

However a police officer appeared to be working hard on the case, as Billy Howle’s Herman Knippenberg is seen investigating the killings of dozens of tourists in the region.

‘Murdered travellers in Thailand, and elsewhere,’ Herman informs Tim McInnerny’s Siemons, ‘He poisons the kids makes them believe they’re sick.’

Sobhraj and Marie-Andree are seen travelling by boat around Thailand with tourists in tow, who they then take pack to their residence where the killer urges his other half to ‘bring some tea’ which is then spiked.

Herman then speaks to his wife Angela (Ellie Bamber), he warns her: ‘He robs, kills. You can’t catch this one.’

First meeting: Transporting the audience back to the 1970s, they tease Sobhraj's first meeting of Jenna's Marie-Andree at a pool party in Thailand

First meeting: Transporting the audience back to the 1970s, they tease Sobhraj’s first meeting of Jenna’s Marie-Andree at a pool party in Thailand

Killer: Showing his methods of killing, Sobhraj was seen spiking a person's drink before taking them to a beach, seemingly to murder them

Killer: Showing his methods of killing, Sobhraj was seen spiking a person’s drink before taking them to a beach, seemingly to murder them

She hits back by saying they ‘might catch him’, Herman tells her that ‘this man will keep on killing until he’s caught’ but she remains steadfast as she claims ‘What if he’s never caught?’

The trailer ends with Jenna’s Marie-Andree tells a couple and potential victims in a French accent: ‘We just got back, you must let us buy you dinner.’ 

Sobhraj was branded the Bikini Killer after two of his victims were found wearing just a bikini, while he was also known as The Serpent for his ability to slither away from facing justice for his crimes for years. 

French Canadian Leclerc began her relationship with Sobhraj aged 30 after he poisoned her male friend to ‘get him out of the way’, however Leclerc was ‘thrilled’ to meet charismatic Sobjraj.

On the trail: However a police officer appeared to be working hard on the case, as Billy Howle's Herman Knippenberg is seen investigating the killings of dozens of tourists in the region

On the trail: However a police officer appeared to be working hard on the case, as Billy Howle’s Herman Knippenberg is seen investigating the killings of dozens of tourists in the region

Accomplice: Sobhraj and Marie-Andree are seen travelling by boat around Thailand with tourists in tow, who they then take pack to their residence for him to kill them

Accomplice: Sobhraj and Marie-Andree are seen travelling by boat around Thailand with tourists in tow, who they then take pack to their residence for him to kill them

Leclerc soon learned how immoral and corrupt her new partner was, however she still stuck by him and even turned up the music as he and an accomplice bludgeoned two victims to near-death.

Notorious con-artist Sobhrag attracted tourists and tricked them into handing over their money for his scams, and if they refused to help he poisoned them. 

One of his first known victims was American tourist, Teresa Knowlton, who was murdered aged 21 after being drowned wearing a bikini by Sobhraj and his henchman Ajay Chowdhury.

However rather than running from the situation, Leclerc pretended to be the murdered victim so she was able to cash the thousands of pounds in travellers cheques they had stolen from her.

Murderer: Herman's wife Angela says they 'might catch him', but he warns her that 'this man will keep on killing until he's caught'

Murderer: Herman’s wife Angela says they ‘might catch him’, but he warns her that ‘this man will keep on killing until he’s caught’

Bystander: The trailer ends with Jenna's Marie-Andree tells a couple and potential victims in a French accent: 'We just got back, you must let us buy you dinner'

Bystander: The trailer ends with Jenna’s Marie-Andree tells a couple and potential victims in a French accent: ‘We just got back, you must let us buy you dinner’

Sobhraj was first caught in 1976 when he tried to drug an entire group of French students in New Dehli and one of them caught on to his plan and handed him over to the authorities.

He spent a total of 21 years in jail in India where he was jailed for culpable homicide for poisoning a French tourist and killing an Israeli man. He was released in 1997.  

During his time in prison, authorities in Thailand attempted to extradite Sobhraj and he threw a huge party for inmates and guards alike. He drugged them all with sleeping pills and managed to walk out of the prison.

He was later caught and jailed for another 10 years for the event until 1997. 

Criminal: Sobhraj was branded the Bikini Killer after two of his victims were found wearing just a bikini, while he was also known as The Serpent for his ability to slither away from facing justice for his crimes for years (pictured in 2011)

Chilling: French actor Tahar was terrifying as he transformed into the killer

Criminal: Sobhraj was branded the Bikini Killer after two of his victims were found wearing just a bikini, while he was also known as The Serpent for his ability to slither away from facing justice for his crimes for years (pictured left in 2011)

Plot: Marie-Andree began her relationship with Sobhraj aged 30 after he poisoned her male friend to 'get him out of the way', however she was 'thrilled' to meet charismatic Sobjraj

Plot: Marie-Andree began her relationship with Sobhraj aged 30 after he poisoned her male friend to ‘get him out of the way’, however she was ‘thrilled’ to meet charismatic Sobjraj

The law caught up with him again in Nepal in 2004 when he was jailed for the killing of US tourist Connie Joe Bronzich in 1975.

In 2014, he was handed a second life sentence for the killing of Canadian backpacker Laurent Carriere, whose passport he had used to escape Nepal after killing the pair.

Sobhraj has now been linked to 20 murders during his killing spree. 

While in jail in Kathmandu, Sobhraj married Biswas, who is 44 years his junior and the daughter of his lawyer.

Pictured: Charles Sobhraj 'The Serpent' and Marie-Andree Leclerc pictured together in 1986

Pictured: Charles Sobhraj ‘The Serpent’ and Marie-Andree Leclerc pictured together in 1986

Leclerc professed her innocence right up until her death aged 38, following an ovarian cancer diagnosis while imprisoned in India.

She was allowed to return to Canada upon the condition she would come back to India when her health improved.

Jenna has previously starred as Doctor Who’s right hand woman Clara Oswald and most recently played Queen Victoria in the ITV drama of the same name.

The Serpent airs on New Year’s Day at 9pm on BBC1. 

Plot: Sobhraj was first caught in 1976 when he tried to drug an entire group of French students in New Dehli and one of them caught on to his plan and was jailed until 1997, he is now serving a second life sentence (Sobhraj pictured in 2011)

Plot: Sobhraj was first caught in 1976 when he tried to drug an entire group of French students in New Dehli and one of them caught on to his plan and was jailed until 1997, he is now serving a second life sentence (Sobhraj pictured in 2011)

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