(Photo Credits: Screengrab from Channel 4’s Official YouTube Account)
Russell T Davies, whose works include Queer as Folk, Doctor Who, A Very English Scandal, Years & Years, Cucumber, and Banana, has a new show called It’s A Sin.
In It’s A Sin, the year is 1981. Three young men named Ritchie (played by Olly Alexander), Roscoe (Omari Douglas), and Colin (Callum Scott Howells) marks the beginning of a new decade by starting their new lives in London. It’s where the three will meet and share each other’s adventures along with their best friend Jill (Lydia West from Years and Years).
The five-episode AIDS drama will be shown in the UK’s Channel 4 and in HBO Max in the U.S. this 2021.
It’s A Sin lead actor Olly Alexander, who is the lead singer of the synth-pop trio Years & Years, said:
I feel like the luckiest boy in the world to be a part of this project, I’ve been a fan of Russell T Davies ever since I watched Queer As Folk in secret at 14 years old. His work helped shape my identity as a gay person so I’m absolutely over the moon we’ll be working together. The script was amazing to read, I laughed and I cried a lot, it’s a privilege to be helping to tell this story and I’m so excited.”
“Ritchie, Roscoe and Colin are young lads, strangers at first, leaving home at 18 and heading off to London in 1981 with hope and ambition and joy… and walking straight into a plague that most of the world ignores,” Channel 4 said in a statement, as reported by RadioTimes.com. “Year by year, episode by episode, their lives change, as the mystery of a new virus starts as a rumor, then a threat, then a terror, and then something that binds them together in the fight.”
Further, the television network said:
“It’s the story of their friends, lovers and families too, especially Jill, the girl who loves them and helps them, and galvanizes them in the battles to come. Together they will endure the horror of the epidemic, the pain of rejection and the prejudices that gay men faced throughout the decade.”
Meanwhile, Russell T Davies—the creator of It’s A Sin—explained in a statement why he created the show:
“I lived through those times, and it’s taken me decades to build up to this. And as time marches on, there’s a danger the story will be forgotten.” He added, “It’s an honor to write this for the ones we lost, and the ones who survived.”
It’s A Sin also stars How I Met Your Mother actor Neil Patrick Harris who plays the character Henry Coltrane while Stephen Fry stars as MP Arthur Garrison. On the other hand, Keeley Hawes plays Valerie, Ritchie’s mother while Shaun Dooley plays the role of Clive, Ritchie’s father.
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OLLY ALEXANDER stars as Ritchie in BOYS, Channel 4, 2020. Also starring KEELEY HAWES as Ritchie’s mum, Valerie, NEIL PATRICK HARRIS as Henry Coltrane and STEPHEN FRY as Arthur Garrison, plus TRACY ANN OBERMAN as Carol Carter, with SHAUN DOOLEY as Clive. The story of three young boys arriving in London in 1981, just as a new virus appears, @ollyyears stars alongside blazing new talent: LYDIA WEST (from Years and Years) as Jill, OMARI DOUGLAS as Roscoe, NATHANIEL CURTIS as Ash, CALLUM HOWELLS as Colin 🏴 Cast by Andy Pryor Casting, Directed by Peter Hoar, produced by Phil Collinson. . . . @channel4 @redproductionco @ollyyears #boys @misskeeleyhawes @nathaniel.curtis @callumhowells_c @marsdoug @carlyle_david @tracyanno @stephenfryactually @nph @nathanieljhall @davidgajones @shaun_dooley_ @philcollinson @pjuk @nicolanshindler @andypryorcasting @realandypryor @meccleston Yes, I’ve gone from Years and Years to Years & Years, I know 😉
I dunno, this will be reliving the darkness of my very young adult days, I felt surrounded by people I didn’t really know . . . but “the look” of illness and the look in their eye’s anger-fear of the hideousness lie before them. Having to come to terms with so very much, including the good-bye’s, still to this day I think about the very close friends that I lost, wondering what they would have been like today some 30-some years later.