Ricky Tomlinson joins new BBC Three zombie drama, ‘In The Flesh’ as filming begins

Kenneth Cranham and Ricky Tomlinson join new BBC Three drama

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Filming has begun on new BBC Three zombie drama ‘In The Flesh’ from new writer Dominic Mitchell and a host of new young acting talent, alongside acting greats Ricky Tomlinson and Kenneth Cranham.

In his first BBC drama since the award-winning Eric And Ernie director Jonny Campbell has brought together a company of fresh acting talent; playing the role of Luke Newberry leads the cast as Kieren Walker together with David Walmsley (best friend, Rick Macy), Emily Bevan (fellow zombie, Amy Dyer) and Harriet Cains (sister, Jem Walker). Joining them are Ricky Tomlinson (Ken Burton) Steve Evets (Bill Macy) and Kenneth Cranham (Vicar Oddie) (Hellbound: HellRaiser II).

In The Flesh‘ is the story of teenager Kieren Walker and his reintegration back into both the local community and the heart of his family. After his death four years ago, his friends and family thought they’d never see Kieren again. But then, shortly after his funeral, thousands of the dead were re-animated in one freak night; and now, after months of re-habilitation and medication, the zombies are gradually being returned to their homes.

With its central themes of redemption, forgiveness, acceptance, denial, and the very essence of what it means to be alive or dead, In The Flesh is a complex but tender look at what happens when families get a second chance at mending their past and working together towards an unpredictable future.

The cast also includes ‘Skins‘ actor Alex Arnold (Alex), Steve Cooper (Steve Walker), Marie Critchley (Sue Walker), Stephen Thompson (Philip Wilson), Sandra Hugget (Shirley Wilson), Gerard Thompson (Dean), Kevin Sutton (Gary), John Owen-Jones (Keith), Karen Henthorn (Janet Macy), Oliver Birch (Giles Weir), Steve Garti (Duncan Lancaster) and Juliet Ellis (Patty Lancaster).

Director Jonny Campbell says: “From the moment I read the opening scene I was hooked. Dominic is an utterly fearless and instinctive young writer with an uncanny ability to tell a great story full of humour and humanity in a most original way. An elusive and rare combination in TV drama. What’s most exciting about In The Flesh is that it challenges our pre-conceptions about the standard zombie genre and in so doing almost certainly creates a new one.”

Writer Dominic Mitchell says: “When I took part in the fantastic BBC Writersroom Northern Voices scheme, never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that my drama about the medicated undead would be produced, let alone with such an incredibly talented cast and crew attached.”

Actor Luke Newberry says: “I am really excited to be playing Kieren who is an amazingly complex character. He is on an unthinkable rollercoaster of a journey, one in which he has been given a second chance at life and he has to come to terms with how to deal with that. The characters may look like zombies but this is a very human story about people trying to survive.”

Made by BBC Drama Production North, the drama is Directed by Jonny Campbell (Eric And Ernie, Doctor Who), Produced by Ann Harrison Baxter (The Secret Of Crickley Hall, Waterloo Road), and the executive produced by Hilary Martin (The Secret Of Crickley Hall, South Riding).

Set in the fictional village of Roarton, ‘In The Flesh‘ started filming on Sunday 21 October and is shot around the North West of England.