Coming Up 2012
Russell Tovey in New Cross
Russell Tovey, Ashley Walters, Lara Pulver, MyAnna Buring, Thomas Turgoose and Yasmin Paige are amongst the actors confirmed to star in Channel 4's Coming Up - the annual talent initiative which offers up-and-coming writers and directors the unique opportunity to showcase their work on national TV.
Coming Up 2012 will see emerging off-screen talent working with established on-screen talent to create seven brand new original dramas to be shown on Channel 4. Now in its eleventh year, the scheme has launched the careers of some of the most exciting writers and directors in British TV - and is the only UK initiative offering aspiring talent the opportunity to make an authored drama with a guaranteed network broadcast.
This year's Coming Up directors include Prasanna Puwanarajah, who was recently selected to direct a short film for the Olympic opening ceremony; and MJ Delaney who came to prominence with Newport State of Mind, one of the most talked about virals of 2010. Writers include Tom Wells who was this year awarded the Critics Circle New Playwright Award for his acclaimed play The Kitchen Sink, and Vivienne Franzmann who was a teacher for 12 years before writing her first play, Mogadishu, for which she was nominated for the Evening Standard Most Promising Playwright Award.
Ben Stoll, Drama Commissioning Editor, Channel 4 says: "Coming Up epitomises Channel 4's passion for discovering and supporting new talent. It's a fantastic opportunity for emerging writers and directors to see their distinctive ideas realised on screen, whilst allowing audiences to get the first glimpse of the storytellers of the future. Add to the mix some of the most exciting current acting talent, and I think we can expect some thrilling pieces of work."
Ashley Walters and Lara Pulver in Camouflage
Coming Up boasts an increasingly impressive list of alumni, with participating filmmakers achieving a broad range of success over the years:
Tom Bidwell (Would Like To Meet, Coming Up 2011) was Oscar-nominated for his short film Wish 143 and is currently writing a new Channel 4 series.
Director duo Wayne Yip and Alex Garcia (Would Like To Meet, Coming Up 2011) directed the third series of BAFTA-winning Misfits on E4...
Nicole Taylor (Emo, Coming Up 2008) has written for Secret Diary of a Call Girl, Ashes to Ashes, and Scott and Bailey...
Jack Thorne (The Spastic King, Coming Up 2007) went on to write for Skins, Shameless, co-created Cast Offs, and shares writing credits with Shane Meadows for the award-winning This is England '86 and This is England '88 for Channel 4, for which he won a Royal Television Society Award for Best Writer (Drama) in 2011 (with Meadows). Thorne also won Best British Newcomer at the 2009 London International Film Festival for The Scouting Book for Boys and created and wrote The Fades...
Tom Harper (Spoil, Coming Up 2007) directed The Scouting Book for Boys, Misfits and This is England '86, and most recently BBC One's adaptation of The Borrowers starring Christopher Eccleston and Sharon Horgan...
Yann Demange (A Man in a Box, Coming Up 2007) has gone on to direct last year's critically acclaimed Top Boy for Channel 4, Secret Diary of a Call Girl, Dead Set and Criminal Justice 2...
Tony Saint (Service, Coming Up 2006) has written Margaret Thatcher: The Long Walk to Finchley, Micromen and On Expenses...
The seven dramas will be produced by Touchpaper Television, a Zodiak Media company, which has partnered Coming Up for the last four years.
Northern Ireland Screen has supported Belfast-set drama Spoof or Die.
The seven Coming Up dramas, in order of TX, are:
A story of forbidden love unfolds when twenty-seven year old Carl meets the girl of his dreams. Their relationship explores thwarted ambition, restlessness, and the desire to follow your own path.
Writer: Laura Neal
Director: David Stoddart
Starring Russell Tovey (Being Human) and Alice Sanders
BEN AND LUMP
It's Christmas and Ben has returned home from his first term at university. Meanwhile best friend Lump can't find a job and now his dad insists he join the army. The holiday season forces the friends to acknowledge the different directions their lives have taken.
Writer: Tom Wells
Director: MJ Delaney
Starring Lewis Reeves, Thomas Turgoose (This is England)
Annette works as a camouflagist, teaching patients how to conceal their scars with make-up. When Riza walks into her consulting room, she finds herself covering up more than just the scars from his past in Sierra Leone.
Writer: Lydia Adetunji
Director: Robert McKillop
Starring Lara Pulver (Sherlock), Ashley Walters (Top Boy)
SPOOF OR DIE
Sixteen year old Craig is growing up in Belfast, obsessed by the city's bloody past. Nicky has just moved to Belfast from England. Together the two play truant from school but as the day progresses their unlikely friendship develops into something far more worrying
Writer: Stacey Gregg
Director: Prasanna Puwanarajah
Starring Ryan McParland, Yasmin Paige (Submarine), Michael Smiley (Kill List), Monica Dolan (Appropriate Adult)
When Jed learns that he is unable to access the treatment he needs for his terminal cancer, he decides to take matters into his own hands with surprising results. Darkly comic with sharp political undertones, this is a heartfelt exploration of love, loss and mortality.
Writer: Laurence Wilson
Director: Tom Marshall
Starring Con O'Neill (Criminal Justice), Jo Hartley (This is England), Debra Stephenson (The Impressions Show)
When 11-year-old Holly meets Congolese boy Andre, he offers her friendship and a reprieve from her difficult home life with a sick mother. Their happiness hangs in the balance, though, as Holly's mum's mental illness worsens and Andre delivers some devastating news.
Writer: Vivienne Franzmann
Director: Lynsey Miller
Starring Leah Nathan, Michael Ajao (Attack the Block), and MyAnna Buring (White Heat)
IF WE DEAD AWAKEN
A Russian ex KGB spy arrives in London seeking a second chance with a lost love, a ballerina who defected many years ago. But they cannot bury the past. He finds himself torn between the woman he loves and unfinished business back in Russia.
Writer: James Phillips
Director: Luke McManus
Starring Branko Djuric (In the Land of Blood and Honey, No Man's Land), Ingaborga Dapkunaite (Burnt by the Sun), Phoebe Fox (Black Mirror) and Stanley Townsend (The Shadow Line)