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Bond Girl Carries A Classic

Dec. 29 2008, Updated 12:55 p.m. ET

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(Photo: Splash News Online) Talk about a switcheroo!

Oiled-up Bond girl Gemma Arterton (Quantum of Solace) has stepped into another enduring British tale, a remake of Thomas Hardy's tragically romantic Tess of the D'Ubervilles.

The period piece will air on Masterpiece Classic, now hosted by Laura Linney (John Adams).

Gemma plays stoic Tess, a young woman in the 1800's caught between changing class systems and sexual discrimination.

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"Tess is a straightforward country girl, very pretty, but unaware of her beauty," Gemma told press.

"I was attracted to the role because stripped down, it's such a basic story about love and missed opportunities, everyone can relate to it."

"Tess is such an iconic figure," Gemma concludes.

"You might love it or hate it, but you can't help but be moved by the drama."

Tess will be shown in 2 parts on Jan 4 and 11 on PBS.

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