Leila Farzad and her husband James Maizels opened a company together just a month before she reportedly ‘moved in’ with Andrew Buchan, new accounts reveal.
The Better actress, 40, and her husband James were appointed as directors of a company called Persian Pictures Limited on November 25 last year.
It was revealed this week that Broadchurch star Buchan left his wife of 11 years Amy Nuttall ‘heartbroken’ when he allegedly left her for Farzad, whom he met on the BBC series where they are said to have struck up a romance.
Nuttall is said to discovered her husband was having an affair when he purchased racy lingerie in a size that was not her own and she has been left so ‘crushed’ by the end of her marriage that she has been crying almost every day.
Buchan, 44, is said to have walked out on Nuttall, 40, at Christmas and his BBC series with Fazard aired in February this year.
New claims: Leila Farzad and her husband James Maizels opened a company together just a month before she reportedly ‘moved in’ with Andrew Buchan, new accounts reveal
Companies House: The Better actress, 40, and her husband James were appointed as directors of a company called Persian Pictures Limited on November 25 last year
He is said to have told Nuttall about their ‘affair’ just before Christmas and is believed to then have moved in with Farzad at some point afterwards.
It is not known when Maizels and Farzad – who opened a performing arts company together in November 2022 – split.
Farzad’s husband Maizels was pictured for the first time since his wife’s ‘affair’ came to light on Thursday.
Nuttall reportedly became suspicious of her husband after seeing cosy social media snaps of him and his co-star.
The Downton Abbey actress, 40, has been left heartbroken after Broadchurch star Buchan allegedly left her for Farzad, whom he met on the BBC series Better.
Sources now claim that Nuttall grew concerned Buchan was cheating after he and Farzad appeared a little too close for comfort in social media snaps.
The star then confirmed her fears when she discovered he had been staying in a hotel close to their home – while claiming to be away working on location – and he had purchased racy lingerie in a different size to hers.
A source told The Sun: ‘The penny started to drop over a period of time. He was away a lot, which wasn’t unusual because of the nature of his work, but at one point Amy realised he had been staying in hotels very near to home — and wondered why.
What’s going on? Amy Nuttall reportedly became suspicious of her husband Buchan after seeing cosy social media snaps of him and co-star Leila Farzad (pictured)
Ring on: Farzad’s husband James Maizels was pictured in London on Thursday – the first time since his wife’s ‘affair’ with married co-star Andrew Buchan came to light
Devastating: The Downton Abbey star has been left heartbroken after the Broadchurch actor allegedly left her for his co-star after they met on the BBC series Better
‘As time moved on there were some tell-tale signs that he had become close to Leila — just something in his mannerisms and in their social media posts together.
‘But the final straw was the lingerie — that’s what clinched it. Amy just knew instinctively that it wasn’t meant for her.’
Farzad recently shared a gushing Instagram post paying tribute to Buchan for ‘holding her up and wiping away her tears,’ alongside a snap of them filming their new drama.
Alongside a montage featuring the Better cast and crew, she wrote: ‘This lot. Couldn’t and wouldn’t happen without them. Big up the Better team who wiped my tears, held me up, fed me crumpets and made me smile.
‘Don’t have pics of everyone but this gang got me through! We made a show, it’s NOT a Happy Valley replacement but a morality tale which should make you think.’
Promoting the drama last month, in which Farzad stars as corrupt police officer Lou alongside Buchan as well-connected criminal, the actress said that her character is ‘trying to be better and see if she can be redeemed’ after an incident.
Speaking on Virgin Radio last month she said: ‘It’s about someone you think should be good actually being terribly corrupt.
‘Maybe an institution that purports to being morally superior, maybe there are some bad eggs and bad apples.’
She continued: ‘It’s about an anti-hero. She’s a police officer who’s also working for a corrupt drugs baron and something happens to her and she has a conscience crisis.
‘It’s about her trying to be better and if she can be redeemed.’
On Tuesday, Nuttall was pictured for the first time since it emerged her husband has walked out on her and their two children.
She is said to have been left so ‘crushed’ by the end of her marriage that she has been crying almost every day – and choked up as she ran errands in Buckinghamshire.
Fighting back tears, she told MailOnline: ‘I can’t talk about it. I’m sorry, I can’t say anything.’
United: Earlier this month, Farzad took to social media to share a gushing tribute to Buchan, above left, in a montage featuring the Better cast and crew
Happy: She shared a caption lauding her co-stars, including Buchan, for ‘wiping away her tears’ and ‘holding her up’
Rumbled: Nuttall’s fears that Buchan was cheating were confirmed when she discovered he had been staying in a hotel close to their home, and had purchased underwear in a different size to hers
Co-stars: Buchan plays well-connected criminal Col alongside Farzad’s corrupt police officer Lou in the crime drama Better, which was first screened on BBC One in February
Crestfallen: Nuttall was pictured yesterday for the first time since it emerged her husband had walked out on her and their two children
New love: Broadchurch star Buchan is said to have left the family home over Christmas and moved in with Leila Farzad after meeting her while working on the BBC series Better
Sources close to Nuttall say that she has been supported by her close friend Joanne Froggatt, who also starred in Downton Abbey and used to live close to her and Buchan.
One friend said: ‘It has broken Amy, it has been so dreadfully sad to see.
‘She got wind that something was going on and she knew she had to say something so she confronted Andrew about it. It must have been the most difficult thing Amy has ever had to do.
‘Now she is getting used to life without him and it is really hard. Luckily, she has some great friends around her who are supporting her every step of the way.
‘One is Joanne and only a few years ago she split from her husband, but she has got through and come out the other side.’
As well as starring in Downton Abbey, the women also appeared in both series of the ITV drama Liar together in 2017 and 2020.
Her friends told MailOnline that the split left the actress ‘crushed’ as she attempts to rebuild her life.
One said: ‘It’s been very hard for Amy. She’s been crying virtually every day since it happened and she’s struggling to cope with things. She can’t even bring herself to talk about it as she’s still trying to make sense of it all.’
Another friend added: ‘Amy and the kids have been hit very hard by this, as you can imagine. They are all crushed. One minute they were living an idyllic family life in a beautiful house and the next, Andrew walks out on them.
‘I’ve seen Amy a few times and when I do, she just bursts into tears. She’s been doing a lot of crying and is still grieving the end of the marriage.’
A close family friend told MailOnline: ‘Amy and the whole family are devastated by what has happened.
‘Her parents are really upset by this as is everyone. ‘People are very angry at Andrew by what he’s done. ‘We just did not see this coming. ‘It’s a massive shock.’
Former flame: Farzad married her partner James in 2013 after being friends for six years. Their daughter Allegra was born in 2014, but the couple have since split up
Amy had alluded to their split with cryptic social media posts over the past few months.
The day after Valentine’s Day she shared a pointed post that read: ‘I am not impressed by money, social status or job title, I’m impressed by the way someone treats other human beings.’
Days before she had shared pictures from a holiday, which featured no sign of Buchan but included one image with a female pal and a cute snap of herself holding hands with two children.
She captioned the images: ‘Holidays with my favourites.’
In another hint that she was going through a tumultuous time, Nuttall shared a selfie drinking a cocktail at the beginning of the month, penning: ‘When a pornstar martini makes life a bit better.’
At Christmas she shared a solo snap posing in front of her tree as a follower asked: ‘How are you and the kids ? Xxxx’
Buchan is best known for roles in Broadchurch, The Fixer and Garrow’s Law – and more recently played Matt Hancock in Kenneth Branagh’s Sky political drama This England.
He landed his first big role in Jane Eyre in 2006, and also starred opposite Matt Smith in Party Animals the following year.
Meanwhile, Nuttall found fame after joining the ITV soap Emmerdale in 2000 at the age of 18. She played Chloe Atkinson for eight years before leaving the show to pursue a music career.
Former boyfriend: While on Emmerdale, Amy dated co-star Ben Freeman for more than four years before the couple separated amid claims he had cheated on her (pictured on the show)
While on the show she dated co-star Ben Freeman for more than four years before the couple separated in 2004 amid claims that he had cheated on her.
It was reported by The News Of The World that Nuttall discovered Freeman had cheated on her, with a source saying: ‘She found out a few weeks ago that Ben had been playing around behind her back, but when she confronted him he denied it.
‘At first she believed him but then she discovered that he had been calling this girl repeatedly and sending her text messages.
‘She found his phone bill and called the girl up. It took a lot of guts but she wanted to know the truth and the girl admitted what had happened.’
In a 2003 interview, while she and Ben were still dating, Amy said she would ‘never dream’ of chatting up someone else’s partner.
She told The Mirror: ‘The girls don’t make me jealous because I’m very secure in my relationship with Ben, but I do think it’s rude. I would never dream of going up to someone else’s boyfriend and trying it on.’
Amy played Ethel Parks in Downton Abbey, with her character losing her job after having an affair with a military officer.