Principal photography is underway in Cornwall on new ITV psychological thriller, Playing Nice, starring James Norton, Niamh Algar, James McArdle and Jessica Brown Findlay.

ITV’s Head of Drama Polly Hill has commissioned the four-parter produced by Rabbit Track Pictures and adapted by Malpractice writer Grace Ofori-Attah from the best-selling novel by British thriller author JP Delaney with Kate Hewitt (One Day) directing all four episodes. CANAL+ pre-bought the series.

BAFTA nominated James Norton (Happy Valley, A Little Life, Nowhere Special), BAFTA nominated Niamh Algar (Mary and George, The Virtues, Raised By Wolves, The Wonder, Calm With Horses), Olivier nominated James McArdle (Sexy Beast, The Mare of Easttown, Life After Life) and BIFA nominated Jessica Brown Findlay (The Flatshare, Life After Life, Black Mirror, Downton Abbey) all take leading roles in the limited series.

STUDIOCANAL will produce the series with Rabbit Track Pictures, the production company founded by Norton and co-founder and Managing Director, Kitty Kaletsky (Rogue Agent). Executive producers are Kitty Kaletsky, James Norton, Kate Crowe (Great Expectations, Taboo, Misfits) and STUDIOCANAL’s Joe Naftalin, with Isobel Carter overseeing for STUDIOCANAL. Grace Ofori-Attah and author JP Delaney also executive produce. Nick Pitt (Black Mirror, His Dark Materials) is series producer.

ITV Drama Commissioner, Helen Perry, will oversee production for the broadcaster with Playing Nice premiering on ITV1 and streaming on ITVX.

Set against a sweeping Cornish landscape, two couples discover that their toddlers were switched at birth in a hospital mix-up, and face a horrifying dilemma: do they keep the sons they have raised and loved, or reclaim their biological child?

Living a waking nightmare, Pete (James Norton) and Maddie (Niamh Algar) are jettisoned into the world of the other couple; Miles (James McArdle) and Lucy (Jessica Brown Findlay). At first it seems all four are agreed on a solution, but it soon becomes clear that hidden motives are at play. How far can each couple trust the real parents of their child – or even each other? As Pete and Maddie are stretched to breaking point, they realise they will stop at nothing to keep their family together.

On behalf of Rabbit Track Pictures Kitty Kaletsky and James Norton commented: “Playing Nice was the first book we optioned after launching Rabbit Track and we feel immensely proud of the project it has become. To be working with ITV, STUDIOCANAL, wonderful Grace Ofori-Attah, visionary Kate Hewitt, our unbelievable cast and the whole rest of the production team is a huge privilege. We’re thrilled and very excited.”

Grace Ofori-Attah adds: “It has been an absolute privilege to adapt JP Delaney’s gripping novel for the screen. I am thrilled to be working with Rabbit Track and STUDIOCANAL, as well as our incredible cast and production team. I’m also excited to be partnering with ITV again on my second drama series, and can’t wait for Playing Nice to hit TV screens next year.”

STUDIOCANAL’s Joe Naftalin and Isobel Carter expand: “We are hugely excited to be launching this production. We are delighted to be working with our wonderful cast and crew, working from a brilliant script by Grace Ofori-Attah, and with powerful direction from Kate Hewitt. We are grateful to our partners at ITV, CANAL+, Rabbit Track – and to JP Delaney for allowing us the opportunity to adapt his gripping novel. We can’t wait to share this captivating series with audiences around the world next year.”

ITV Drama Commissioner Helen Perry commented: “Playing Nice is an enthralling thriller with a knotty moral dilemma at its heart. Not only will viewers be hooked, they’ll be left questioning ‘what would I do…?’ As Grace Ofori-Attah’s superb script raises questions about the nature of parenting and how far we’ll go for those we love.”

Helen continued: “We’re thrilled to have on board such a stellar cast and crew, and we’re delighted to be working with the team at STUDIOCANAL and Rabbit Track Pictures to bring this fantastic adaption to ITV1 and ITVX.”

Playing Nice will be distributed globally by STUDIOCANAL.


Jon Creamer

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