Channel 4 announced back in April they were to produce a conspiracy theory based drama. Today the broadcaster revealed more details on the series entitled Utopia.
“Utopia is everything you expect from a Channel 4 drama – witty, utterly compelling and impossible to ignore – and I’m delighted that as part of our increased commitment to new drama on the channel, we’re working with one of the UK’s leading writing talents, Dennis Kelly.” Said Channel 4 boss Jay Hunt back in April.
The story revolves around a small group of people who find themselves in possession of a manuscript of cult graphic novel Utopia, their lives are knocked out of kilter by explosive events in a new six part drama for Channel 4. Conspiracy theory turned terrifyingly real is the subject of this brand-new six-part drama series.
Targeted by a shadowy organisation known only as The Network, they are left with one option if they want to survive: they have to run. Never able to return home, the characters’ lives are immediately transformed. Unable to contact anyone on the outside, they live in constant fear of discovery – even though they have no idea why they are being pursued. All they know is that The Network is all-pervasive; in government, in business and in charge. Nobody knows what their plan is, only that they will stop at nothing.
Paul Higgins (In the Loop, The Thick of It), Nathan Stewart-Jarrett (Misfits), Alexandra Roach (The Iron Lady) and Neil Maskell (Kill List) head up the ensemble cast of UK talent including James Fox (Sherlock Holmes, A Passage to India, Performance), Geraldine James (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) Simon McBurney (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy), Fiona O’ Shaughnessy (Outcast, Malice, Aforethought), Adeel Akhtar (The Dictator, Four Lions), Oliver Woollford (Blackout) and Michael Smiley (Kill List) who find themselves embroiled in a cult conspiracy theory.
“At the heart of it is a conspiracy, and the conspiracy slowly gets unveiled during the course of the series. But the people who are involved have no idea what’s going on. Often you see conspiracy thrillers involving journalists or cops, or people who are somehow in the know. I liked the idea of that sort of happening to someone who was a bit shit, like me, and wouldn’t know what to do, and was completely at sea with it. So basically there’s a graphic novel that’s been published in the past, and there have been lots of whacked-out conspiracy theories linked to it. There are people who are fans of it, who suddenly get involved in this conspiracy, and as things slowly begin to unravel, they get thrown out of their lives. They can’t contact their families or use email, and are constantly on the run, so it’s a bit shit for them.” Writer of the series Dennis Kelly adds.
Utopia begins its run from January 15th on Channel 4