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Monday, 24 November 2014

ITV commissions Jekyll and Hyde

ITV have commissioned a ten-part action adventure drama, Jekyll & Hyde. The drama series is inspired by Robert Louis Stevenson's story and is written by acclaimed novelist and actor Charlie Higson.

Higson's story will exude, mystery, fantasy, horror and sci-fi and will focus on the young, attractive, troubled hero Robert Jekyll; the grandson of the original Dr Jekyll.

At the heart of the drama is Robert Jekyll’s quest to discover his real identity, his true family history and the nature of his ‘curse’. One actor will play the lead role Jekyll transforming into Hyde in moments of extreme anger, stress and when his or the lives of others are threatened.

Higson’s Jekyll is a young, sensitive and na├»ve man of intellect and morality, a well meaning if slightly repressed character who slips between his two personas unwillingly.  Hyde is a totally different person; a superhero with super powers, great strength, speed and invulnerability. He is confident, risk-taking and lives life on the edge.  His self-destructive nature gets him into trouble, and yet he is an incredibly powerful force.  He is a man of action who gets things done despite the consequences!  Throughout the series we will witness Jekyll wrestling with the dark, brooding personality of Hyde as he struggles to come to terms with his superhero alter ego.

In the opening episode Jekyll is a newly qualified doctor living with his foster parents in India.  He knows nothing of his family history or his inherited condition, which his foster father, Dr Vishal Najaran, is controlling with medication.  The drama follows his path to discovery, which coincides with the transformative powers of his condition growing stronger and more disruptive.  His journey will take him into a dark and unforgiving place, as his alter ego seems capable of anything. At the same time there are shadowy forces trying to find Jekyll and the source of his powers.

CGI will play a huge part in the main character’s transformation from Jekyll into Hyde and the subsequent superhero sequences when the darker side of our hero emerges and demonstrates extraordinary strength and agility. Certain characters will also be created by CGI techniques, as there are no limits to what will be imagined by the production team.

Jekyll & Hyde will be directed by Colin Teague and is due to start filming in India in January 2015. Subsequent filming will take place in London from February till July of 2015. Casting will be announced in the upcoming month before filming commences.

Speaking of the project Higson says, "it’s an exciting challenge to take Stevenson’s work and use it as the basis for a new Jekyll & Hyde, so many superheroes with secret dual personalities have been brought to life thanks to Jekyll & Hyde.  He’s one of literatures most important and influential characters and it’s a privilege to be rediscovering him.”  

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