ITV has commissioned a new version of J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan with international pop star, singer/songwriter and actress Paloma Faith making a guest appearance as Tinker Bell, Academy Award nominee Stanley Tucci (Julie and Julia, Devil Wears Prada) playing the legendary Captain Hook and Laura Fraser (Breaking Bad, A Knight’s Tale) as Mrs Darling.
The two hour drama will also feature two exciting new young talents to play Peter Pan and Wendy Darling – Zac Sutcliffe and Hazel Doupe. Peter & Wendy will be produced by Headline Pictures (Quartet, The Invisible Woman) and scripted by BAFTA winner Adrian Hodges (My Week with Marilyn, The Musketeers).
The drama is a re-imagining of J.M. Barrie’s much loved classic novel, which reinterprets this timeless story for the modern age while remaining faithful to the spirit of the original.
J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan is firmly established as one of the greatest of family stories, known and enjoyed worldwide. The fictional character of Peter Pan himself has become one of the iconic stars of childhood literature, as has his nemesis, the villainous but oddly poignant Captain Hook. Both of these characters, as well as many of J.M. Barrie’s other fictional characters will be brought to screen in the ITV drama, which will also introduce brand new characters too. Bjarne Henriksen (The Killing), Ben Crompton (Game of Thrones) and Rasmus Hardiker (Your Highness) are among the cast bringing these characters to life.
The drama will open in modern day Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) where twelve-year-old Lucy Rose (Hazel Doupe, who also plays Wendy Darling) is awaiting treatment for a serious heart condition. Her mother Julie (Laura Fraser, also doubling up as Mrs Darling) is distraught with the fear of losing her child, and surgeon Mr Wylie (Stanley Tucci, who also plays Hook) assures her he’ll do everything in his power to make the operation a success.
The day before her operation, Lucy reads J.M. Barrie’s novel of Peter Pan to a crowd of sick children in the hospital, and she goes to sleep with thoughts of the classic tale in her head. Lucy dreams this version of Peter Pan into existence and the story is retold through the young girl’s imagination.
The magical story cuts back and forth between Lucy’s modern day struggles and the fantasy land of Neverland, with the common theme being positivity and belief.
ITV’s Director of Drama Steve November and Controller Victoria Fea have commissioned this reimagining of J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan, which will be produced by Headline Pictures’ Christian Baute and Stewart Mackinnon (Quartet, The Invisible Woman) and directed by BAFTA winner Diarmuid Lawrence (Little Dorrit, Mapp & Lucia). The drama is made in partnership with London based Catalyst Global Media, the multifaceted film and television financing and production company run by Co-founder and CEO Charlotte Walls and will be distributed internationally by Red Arrow International.
Producer Stewart Mackinnon said: “The drama will retain the classic structure and content of J.M Barrie’s original Peter Pan, while adding a new framing story designed to allow audiences a different way into the story. The modern framework makes funny and at times poignant connections with the original material, while allowing the film to make an affectionate nod towards the traditional theatrical device of actors doubling and even tripling in different roles. This device also establishes a connection with Great Ormond Street Hospital, the world famous children’s hospital that has become irrevocably associated with Peter Pan.”
ITV’s Director of Drama Steve November said: “I’m delighted to be bringing J.M. Barrie’s classic story of Peter Pan to ITV. This wonderful interpretation by Adrian Hodges is faithful to Barrie’s original, but adds a new and unexpected dimension that makes it feel as though we are hearing the story for the first time.”
He continued, “We’re thrilled to have such a great cast on board to star in this exciting new drama.”
Christine De Poortere, Peter Pan Director at Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity said: “We are absolutely thrilled to see Peter Pan in an exciting new screen version, especially as it brings together Barrie’s original story and GOSH, the honoured recipient of his amazing gift. As Barrie said himself “At one time Peter Pan was an invalid in the Hospital for Sick Children, and it was he who put me up to the little thing I did for the Hospital.” I’m sure Barrie would have been proud of what Headline Pictures and the cast have done with his timeless story”.
Charlotte Walls, Co-founder and CEO of Catalyst Global Media commented: “This reimagining of the traditional J.M. Barrie Peter Pan story is poignant, touching and a reminder to us all of the power of imagination and the importance of childhood and we are thrilled to be partnering with Headline Pictures, ITV, GOSH and the talented cast and crew on this fresh take on a beloved international classic.”
Amelie Von Kienlin, SVP Scripted Acquisitions at Red Arrow International said: “We are hugely excited to be working with Headline Pictures and ITV to be taking this magical new adaptation of J.M Barrie’s Peter Pan out to the world. The talented international cast and production team ensures that this much loved story, with a compelling new twist, will be enjoyed by audiences around the globe.”
Peter & Wendy is currently in production with filming taking place over a six week period in Luxembourg, London and Dorset. CGI special effects will be used to create the extraordinary world of The Neverland.
Headline Pictures are producing with Juliette Films and Catalyst Global Media in partnership with Lip Sync Productions and the Luxembourg Film Fund.
About Peter Pan, J.M. Barrie and Great Ormond Street Hospital
Peter Pan was created by J.M.Barrie (1860 – 1937). At the age of six, Barrie lost his elder brother David (age 14) in a skating accident. In order to cope with her grief, their mother Margaret would say that David would forever be a child and not know the harsh realities of life. Thus the seed for Peter Pan was planted, as well as Barrie’s great delight in the happiness of children. Peter Pan, or the Boy Who Would Not Grow Up, was first staged at the Duke of York’s Theatre in London on 27 December 1904 and has enchanted children and adults alike ever since.
In February 1929, Barrie was approached by Great Ormond Street Hospital to sit on the committee to help buy land to develop a new wing. Instead, Barrie handed over the rights to Peter Pan to the Hospital. This gave the institution control of the rights of these works and entitled them to royalties from any performance or publication of the play and derivative works. In 1988, the Copyright Designs & Patents Act granted the Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity a right to royalty in perpetuity from all commercial exploitation on stage, publication, film, broadcast of the story of Peter Pan, continuing Barrie’s gift forever in the UK
Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children opened its doors on 14 February 1852 with just ten beds. It was the first children’s hospital in Britain and quickly acquired the patronage of Queen Victoria and had wide public support, including from Charles Dickens. Today, Great Ormond Street Hospital is one of the world’s leading children’s hospitals, with the broadest range of dedicated, children’s healthcare specialists under one roof in the UK. The hospital’s pioneering research and treatment give hope to children worldwide who are suffering from the rarest, most complex and often life-threatening conditions. The income raised from Peter Pan contributes towards Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity’s fundraising programme that helps provide vital up-to-date equipment, parental accommodation and fund research into better treatments for children everywhere.