Emmett J. Scanlan, Alison Steadman, Sean McGinley and Callum Booth-Ford join Anna Friel.

Anna Friel is to spread her acting wings with Butterfly for ITV.

Created and penned by BAFTA honoured screenwriter Tony Marchant, Butterfly is about the acrimonious relationship between separated parents, Vicky (Anna Friel) and Stephen (Emmett J. Scanlan), and their division in opinion over how to support their gender variant child, Max (Callum Booth-Ford).

From a young age, their now 11-year-old son, Max, has identified as a girl and as puberty looms, he begins to present increasing signs of gender variance. When Max was eight, his father, Stephen, left the family home. But as Max’s conviction that he’s in the wrong body intensifies, his distress escalates, and Stephen seizes the opportunity to return to live at the family home and support his son. However differently Max’s parents feel about their child potentially being transgender, they agree on one thing, Max’s welfare is paramount.

What unfolds for all the family members involved is the greatest challenge and test of love and understanding imaginable. The social transitioning of Max to Maxine is initially thwarted because of the clear division of opinion between Vicky and Stephen. As Maxine grows in confidence, she becomes increasingly certain that she’s in the right skin, but is this enough to get everyone else on board?

Friel and Emmett J. Scanlan are Alison Steadman, Sean McGinley and child actor Callum Booth-Ford. Production has begun this week in Manchester on the RED Production Company mini series. Millie Gibson, Amy Huberman, Lorraine Burroughs and Felicity Montagu also star.

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