Keeley Hawes broke down in tears over her role in 'Honour'.

Keeley Hawes

Keeley Hawes

The 44-year-old actress - who stars as real-life hero detective Caroline Goode - felt a huge responsibility playing the policewomen in the two-part ITV drama, which follows Caroline arresting five men involved in the so-called honour killing of 20-year-old Iraqi Kurdish woman, Banaz Mahmod.

Keeley told The Sun newspaper: "More so than with anything I've ever worked on, the responsibility is huge. I felt it every day, and every day since. You want to do the right thing by everyone involved.

"It is about these two women. You want to give Banaz the utmost respect and also do the right thing by Caroline."

Banaz - played by Buket Komur - was raped, tortured and strangled after she left an arranged marriage because her husband had raped and beaten her for two years.

After she started a relationship with another man, Rahmat Sulemani (Moe Bar-El), her family joined forces to kill her to restore the so-called honour in their family.

Caroline took on the case and tracked down all the men involved.

Keeley added: "One of my reasons for doing the drama was shining a light on so-called honour killings. I hate to use the word honour. It's murder, it's rape, it's abuse.

"If we can open people's eyes to see something strange or untoward then maybe we can help other women. And if one girl or woman doesn't have to go through what Banaz went through then it's a success as far as I'm concerned."

However, others weren't as initially pleased with the drama.

Banaz's sister, Payzee, said: "It really doesn't sit too well with me that that's the angle they chose to go with."

But after watching the drama in full, Payzee is said to be "fully supportive".

Writer Gwyneth Hughes said: "Payzee is fully supportive now."