The impressive slate also includes projects from Cash Carraway, Dolly Alderton, Stefan Golaszewski and Theresa Ikoko.
In Champion, Candice Carty-Williams, the award-winning writer of superb Sunday Times bestseller Queenie, will tell the story of what happens when fame collides with family in her first TV project. Whilst “voice of a new generation” Cash Carraway pens Cash Carraway (w/t), inspired by her darkly funny debut memoir Skint Estate and will star Daisy May Cooper.
Dolly Alderton will be adapting her own wildly funny, occasionally heart-breaking, internationally bestselling memoir of the same name, Everything I Know About Love, giving an unflinching account of surviving your 20s.
Multi-award winning and revered writer-director Shane Meadows - responsible for the incredible This is England franchise - will tackle his first period drama in his first ever BBC drama, The Gallows Pole. A remarkable true story set against the backdrop of the coming industrial revolution in 18th century Yorkshire.
He brought us the wonderful Him & Her and Mum and now BAFTA winning writer-director Stefan Golaszewski has written Marriage, a four part drama about a couple who need each other. And the BIFA-winning writer of Rocks, Theresa Ikoko, will adapt soon-to-be published novel Wahala about three thirty-something Anglo-Nigerian female friends living in London.
Here's more detail about each of the 6 brand new dramas...
Bosco Champion is the golden boy of the Champion family. After being jailed, this UK rap sensation is home from prison and ready to dominate the music industry once more. Since she can remember, his younger sister Vita has been his personal assistant, running around after him, getting him out of trouble and hiding his various misdemeanours.
But when Vita’s own talent is discovered by Bosco’s rival, Belly, she steps out of her brother's shadow to become a performer in her own right, setting the Champion siblings against one another in their quest to both reach the top spot in the charts, and to be the star of the family.
Even their parents, sound-man turned radio DJ Beres and nineties R&B one hit wonder Aria, can’t stop Bosco and Vita from splitting the Champion family down the middle as they go head to head in a very public and messy battle. In fact, it might be in their best interests to keep Bosco and Vita apart.
Described as a "love letter to Black British music" this new drama, set in south London, promises to be the celebration of a sound that has long been the beating heart of our culture.
Speaking about the new drama, Candice Carty-Williams said "Champion is a celebration of black music and a black family, however fragmented that family might be."
"Since I knew what music was, I’ve loved grime and UK rap and neo-soul, to the point of obsession, and to bring to a primetime slot a series that gives these genres of music life and texture is absolutely amazing, as is getting to work with some of the best producers making music today to create original tracks for the show."
"I can’t think of anywhere else Champion could sit but the BBC and I’m looking forward to everyone seeing a show that they have never seen before."
Champion will be produced by Joy Gharoro-Akpojotor and further writers include Isis Davis, Emma Dennis-Edwards, Ameir Brown and Edem Wornoo.
The new drama is executive produced by Jo McClellan for the BBC, Bryan Elsley, Dave Evans and Danielle Scott-Haughton for Balloon Entertainment, Charlie Pattinson, Willow Grylls and Imogen O’Sullivan for New Pictures, part of theAll3Media Group, and Candice Carty-Williams.
Cash Carraway (w/t)
Inspired by her book Skint Estate, Cash Carraway (w/t) is a wild and punky tale of being trapped below the poverty line and doing everything it takes to escape.
Daisy May Cooper stars as a young working class single mum living with her ten year old daughter in the brutal lonely landscape of austerity Britain. Told with a dark lick of humour and an anarchic attitude, the drama skewers stereotypes of what it means to be working class and underlines the importance of love, dreams and friendships.
Speaking about the drama, Cash Carraway said "The show is about a brash yet intelligent working-class single mum who not only lives in extreme inner-city poverty but a state of ridicule and humiliation as she attempts to improve her life. She’s immoral and shocking and purposefully vile, and swaggerous and quite amazing really – but obviously I would say that as it’s inspired by my life!"
"Luckily the role will be played by the brilliant Daisy May Cooper who I know will give her warmth and humour and a performance that says “f-you” to the expectations of how women perceived to be at the bottom of society are expected to behave."
"It isn't a woeful tale of poverty porn, it's a love story in the detritus between a mother and her daughter. A woman who refuses to hand over her spirit regardless of how hard it’s kicked in, and it’s an absolute dream to write this drama for the BBC and Sid Gentle Films."
Cash Carraway (w/t) is executive produced by Jo McClellan for the BBC and Sally Woodward Gentle and Lee Morris for Sid Gentle Films and Cash Carraway. Sid Gentle’s Head of Development, Henrietta Colvin, will serve as Associate Producer.
Everything I Know About Love
Maggie and Birdy, besties since school, finally land in London to live it large, when the unexpected happens – dependable Birdy gets a steady boyfriend. A generous, funny, warm-hearted and uplifting Sex & The City for Millennials which covers bad dates and squalid flat-shares, heartaches and humiliations, and, most importantly, unbreakable female friendships.
Speaking about the new drama, Dolly Alderton said "Everything I Know About Love is a semi-fictionalised adaptation of my memoir of the same name. It’s a messy, boisterous, joyful, romantic comedy about two best female friends from childhood and what happens when they move in to their first London house share and the first phase of adulthood."
"I cannot stress enough how thrilled I am that it is being made by Working Title and the BBC."
Everything I Know About Love is executive produced by Jo McClellan for the BBC, Dolly Alderton, and Surian Fletcher-Jones, Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner for Working Title Television, which is part of NBCUniversal International Studios, a division of Universal Studio Group.
The Gallows Pole
Written by Shane Meadows, The Gallows Pole, is based on the novel of the same name by Benjamin Myers and fictionalises the remarkable true story of the rise and fall of David Hartley and the Cragg Vale Coiners.
Set against the backdrop of the coming industrial revolution in 18th century Yorkshire, the compelling drama follows the enigmatic David Hartley, as he assembles a gang of weavers and land-workers to embark upon a revolutionary criminal enterprise that will capsize the economy and become the biggest fraud in British history.
Speaking about the new drama, Shane Meadows said "The Gallows Pole is an incredible true story, little known outside of Yorkshire, about a group of very naughty men and women who started clipping and counterfeiting coins out in the Moors, as a way to keep themselves and their community alive."
"I’ve never made a period drama before so I’m absolutely buzzing, and to be doing it with Piers at the BBC, his incredible team, and Element Pictures is nothing short of an honour."
The Gallows Pole will be produced by Element Pictures and executive produced by Piers Wenger and Tom Lazenby for the BBC.
From two time BAFTA winning writer-director Stefan Golaszewski, Marriage examines in intimate detail the fears, frustrations and salvation of marriage and the comfort that can only be found in togetherness.
Speaking about his first drama, Stefan Golaszewski said "Marriage is a show about a couple but there’s more to it than that obviously! It’s great to be working with the BBC again. They’ve been amazing during the development of the idea and encouraged me to write what I want to write. It feels like a real privilege."
Marriage is executive produced by Tommy Bulfin for the BBC, Beth Willis and George Faber for The Forge and Richard Laxton and Stefan Golaszewski for The Money Men.
Adapted by BAFTA nominated writer Theresa Ikoko from Nikki May’s soon to be published debut novel of the same name, Wahala follows three thirty-something Anglo-Nigerian female friends living in London, successfully navigating a world that mixes roast dinners with jollof rice.
Simi, Ronke and Boo have been best friends for years, sharing every aspect of their careers, family lives and relationships with one another. But when the beautiful, charismatic and super wealthy Isobel infiltrates their friendship group, mounting tensions, unravelling bonds and unearthed secrets have shocking and tragic consequences.
Speaking about the new drama, Theresa Ikoko said "I can’t wait to bring Nikki May’s amazing book Wahala to the screen with BBC and Firebird. It is a fantastic, intriguing, suspenseful story of friendship, rivalry secrecy and revenge, think Big Little Lies meets Girlfriends meets Peckham!"
"It’s also a really amazing celebration of Nigerian British culture, which I’m a proud flag-bearer of, so it’s going to be a lot of the correct jollof rice, awe-inspiring geles and breath-taking moments, we hope you love it!”
Wahala is executive produced by Mona Qureshi for the BBC and Elizabeth Kilgarriff for Firebird Pictures.