Today Channel 4 have released a first look image and teaser for Russell T Davies' new five-part drama It's A Sin (previously Boys) which will air in 2021.
It's A Sin follows the story of the 1980s, the story of AIDS, and charts the joy and heartbreak of a group of friends across a decade in which everything changed.
It’s 1981, the start of a new decade and Ritchie, Roscoe and Colin begin a new life in London. Strangers at first, these young gay lads, and their best friend Jill, find themselves thrown together, and soon share each other’s adventures. But a new virus is on the rise, and soon their lives will be tested in ways they never imagined. As the decade passes, and they grow up in the shadow of AIDS, they’re determined to live and love more fiercely than ever.
Olly Alexander leads the cast as 18-year-old Ritchie Tozer, the family’s golden boy, who's determined to keep his secrets from them.
Newcomers Omari Douglas and Callum Scott Howells play London-born 17-year-old Roscoe Babatunde, a wild, brittle party boy, always on the run and Colin Morris-Jones, a quiet, unassuming, boy from Wales, about to become an apprentice on Savile Row.
Lydia West plays Jill Baxter, Ritchie’s friend from college, straight-talking, funny, and the rock on which they rely and newcomer Nathaniel Curtis plays Ash, a faithful friend through thick and thin.
The cast also includes Keeley Hawes and Shaun Dooley who play Ritchie's mum and dad, Valerie and Clive as well as Stephen Fry as MP Arthur Garrison, Tracy Ann Oberman as Carol Carter and Neil Patrick Harris as Henry Coltrane.
It’s the story of these boys’ friends, lovers and families too, especially Jill, the girl who loves them and helps them, and galvanises them in the battles to come. Together they will endure the horror of the epidemic, the pain of rejection and the prejudices that gay men faced throughout the decade.
There are terrible losses and wonderful friendships. And complex families, pushed to the limit and beyond. This is a series that remembers the boys we lost, and celebrates those lives that burned so brightly.
Speaking about the drama, Russell T Davies said "I lived through those times, and it’s taken me decades to build up to this. And as time marches on, there’s a danger the story will be forgotten. So it’s an honour to write this for the ones we lost, and the ones who survived."
To which Olly Alexander added "I feel like the luckiest boy in the world to be a part of this project, I’ve been a fan of Russell T Davies ever since I watched Queer As Folk in secret at 14 years old. His work helped shape my identity as a gay person so I’m absolutely over the moon we’ll be working together. The script was amazing to read, I laughed and I cried a lot, it’s a privilege to be helping to tell this story and I’m so excited."
And Neil Patrick Harris said "I’m so pleased, and incredibly proud, to be a part of Russel T Davies’ new series. This drama, is two things: it is an irresistible, funny, jubilant story of young people discovering their true identities and the unalloyed joy of living life to the fullest, it is also a deeply resonant exploration of a decade when so many of these lives were cut short by the devastating effects of the nascent AIDS pandemic. Russell’s scripts chart the highs and lows of this time so beautifully and deftly, it’s an honour to help tell this story."
It's A Sin will air in 2021 on Channel 4