A drama directed by Frank and Room director Lenny Abrahamson and a series created by and starring Michaela Coel are among the BBC’s latest slate of dramas.
The British public broadcaster has unveiled three new scripted series at the Edinburgh International TV Festival.
Jan 22nd, which is written by Chewing Gum creator Coel, explores the question of sexual consent in contemporary life and how, in the new landscape of dating and relationships, people make the distinction between liberation and exploitation. Set in London, the story centres on Arabella (Coel) whose raw and personal experience of consent sits at the heart of the story. Through Arabella we meet a group of fictional friends and colleagues whose sexual adventures frequently collide with a world in which new codes of sexual practice are emerging. Produced by Various Artists and Coel’s indie, Falkna Productions for BBC Two, it will be executive produced by Coel, Phil Clarke and Piers Wenger.
Abrahamson is directing an adaptation of Sally Rooney’s forthcoming novel Normal People for BBC Three. The series, which is produced by The Killing of a Sacred Deer and The Lobster producer Element Pictures, is a modern love story about how one person can unexpectedly change another person’s life and about how complicated intimacy can be. Over several years, it follows Marianne and Connell – both from a small west of Ireland town, but from very different backgrounds – as they embark on an on-off romance that starts at school and continues through college, as they test their relationship, experiment with other partners and explore different versions of themselves.
Finally, Studio Lambert, the All3Media-backed producer behind Three Girls and The Feed, is making The Nest for BBC One. The six-part series is a thriller written by Nicole Taylor, who wrote Three Girls and feature film Wild Rose. It explores the consequences of a pact between a wealthy couple and a teenage girl that changes all of their lives forever. Dan and Emily are crazy about each other. They live in a huge house in the nicest part of Glasgow and want for nothing. All that’s missing is a baby – and they’ve been trying for years. Through a chance encounter they meet Kaya, an 18 year old from the other side of the city, whose life is as precarious at theirs is comfortable. When Kaya agrees to carry their baby, it feels like they were meant to meet but was it really by chance? Who is Kaya and what has brought her to this couple? Can the dreams of Kaya, Emily and Dan be fulfilled or have all three embarked on a relationship of mutually assured destruction? It will be executive produced by Susan Hogg for Studio Lambert and Lucy Richer for the BBC.
BBC Drama Chief Wenger said, “I am honoured to be today announcing three brand new and contrasting dramas for BBC One, Two and Three. To BBC One comes The Nest. Nicole Taylor’s talent for creating complex, compelling characters and for getting deep under the skin of modern Britain will make The Nest one of next year’s most thrilling and provocative dramas. Over on BBC Two…. Jan 22nd (w/t) will be must-see TV for anyone with an interest in modern gender politics or anyone who is struggling to get to grips with the new rules of sex and dating. Finally, on BBC Three, Sally Rooney is fast becoming the voice of her generation and the BBC is thrilled to be working with her on her first piece for television.”
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