ITV commissioned this three-part contemporary drama The Town from Big Talk Productions.
BAFTA winner Andrew Scott will star alongside an outstanding ensemble cast including Julia McKenzie, Charlotte Riley, Gerard Kearns, Kelly Adams and Martin Clunes.
The Town is Big Talk’s first 60-minute drama commission and is also the first television series by Laurence Olivier award-winning playwright Mike Bartlett.
Following a shocking incident amongst an otherwise normal family, 30 year-old Mark Nicholas (Andrew Scott) returns to the town where he grew up. After ten years away, coming home to Renton is harder than Mark could ever have imagined. He always had a strained relationship with his parents, his grandmother Betty (Julia McKenzie) is now living in his childhood bedroom and he barely knows his teenage sister Jodie (played by 16 year-old newcomer Avigail Tlalim in her first ever screen role).
Mark starts to be drawn back into the life he left behind. Most of his school friends still live in the town but he finds it hard to re-connect with them. Hardest of all is meeting his first love Alice (Charlotte Riley) who stayed behind when he left. They still have strong feelings for each other but Alice is now married with a child.
Mark struggles to decide whether he should stay permanently to be with his family. But a new life is difficult to build in the place you used to call home and it now feels like you barely know it.
“We’re thrilled to be making our first original drama series for the fantastic team at ITV. At the heart of The Town will be a family struggling to come to terms with change. It’s also our hope to paint a picture of contemporary Britain through the magnifying glass of an ordinary market town. The story takes place in a landscape familiar to most of the UK. Most of the population live their lives in a place like Renton,” said Big Talk’s CEO and The Town’s co-executive producer Kenton Allen.
“These communities are desperate for a sense of purpose and direction. They face the same challenges we all do. A shrinking economy, under-employment, crime and a struggle to educate our children. Mike’s real skill is to craft a compelling and entertaining drama at the heart of such a world,” added co-executive producer Simon Curtis.
The Town will be produced by Big Talk’s Luke Alkin (Dirty War, Grow Your Own), and executive produced by Kenton Allen (Rev, Him & Her) Matthew Justice (Attack the Block) and Simon Curtis (My Week With Marilyn, Cranford). Simon introduced the project to Big Talk after identifying Mike as an exciting new writer via his work at the Royal Court Theatre. Colin Teague (Doctor Who, Shirley) directs.
Episodes: 3 x 60’
Writers: Mike Bartlett
Producer: Luke Alkin
Director: Colin Teague
Executive Producers: Kenton Allen, Matthew Justice and Simon Curtis