Douglas Stuart, author of the 2020 Booker Prize-winning novel Shuggie Bain, is adapting his novel for BBC One and iPlayer in his first television series, produced by A24.
Set during the 1980s, Shuggie Bain is the story of a mother-son relationship in working class Glasgow. Shuggie’s mother Agnes dreams of a house with its own front door, ordering a little happiness on credit. Agnes finds increasing solace in drink, and she drains away the lion’s share of each week’s benefits – all the family has to live on. To Shuggie, an effeminate boy who struggles to fit in, Agnes is his guiding light. He cares for her as she battles with alcoholism while he struggles to become the normal boy he desperately longs to be.
A heart-breaking story of pride, sexuality, addiction, and love, Shuggie Bain is inspired by Douglas Stuart’s own childhood in Thatcher-years Glasgow and is a powerful portrayal of a working-class family.
Douglas Stuart says: “I am deeply grateful to the BBC and A24 for their belief in Shuggie Bain. I’m thrilled to bring the Bain family to the screen and the opportunity to expand on my novel and to bring new threads to the story, exploring hardships and struggles as well as the compassion, humour, and resilience that is so central to the Scottish spirit.”
Gaynor Holmes, BBC Drama commissioning editor, says: “Shuggie Bain is an extraordinary novel, with all the makings of extraordinary television. It’s a real honour to be working with the immensely talented Douglas Stuart to bring his vision to the BBC.”
Shuggie Bain is Douglas Stuart’s first novel and became an international bestseller, selling in 39 countries.
Shuggie Bain will be executive produced by A24 and Gaynor Holmes for the BBC. The series is being produced and distributed internationally by A24.
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