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Paul Higgins to star in C4 drama ‘Utopia

Channel 4 has announced the cast for new conspiracy drama Utopia a 6 x 60 series written by Dennis Kelly, the co-creator of the Olivier Award winning Matilda  

Paul Higgins (In the Loop, The Thick of It), Nathan Stewart-Jarrett (Misfits), Alexandra Roach (The Iron Lady) and Neil Maskell (Kill List) head up a stunning ensemble cast of UK talent including James Fox (Sherlock Holmes, A Passage to India, Performance), Geraldine James (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) Simon McBurney (Tinker Taylor Soldier Spy), Fiona O’ Shaughnessy (Outcast, Malice, Aforethought), Adeel Akhtar (The Dictator, Four Lions), Oliver Woolford (Blackout) and Michael Smiley (Kill List) who find themselves embroiled in a cult conspiracy theory turned terrifyingly real in the brand-new series for Channel 4.

The Utopia Experiments is a legendary graphic novel shrouded in mystery. But when Ian, Becky, Grant and Wilson Wilson, a small group of previously unconnected people find themselves in possession of an original manuscript of the fabled book, their lives suddenly and brutally implode.

Targeted swiftly and relentlessly by a murderous organisation known as The Network this terrified group are left with only one option if they want to survive: they have to run.

But how do you run, when your every move can be tracked? How do you disappear when The Network can shine a light into the darkest of corners? Can you really trust those you’ve only just met when your life is on the line?

When help appears to come in the form of the mysterious Jessica Hyde, who promises to keep them safe, what choice is there but to believe her? As their world goes dark and all they previously knew is wrenched from them, the four strangers must shed their past and come together in order to survive this violent new future.

The linear drama will incorporate an exciting multi-platform experience created by TH_NK, the digital agency behind J.K. Rowling’s Pottermore. The agency is set to work with the production team, Kudos and scriptwriter Dennis Kelly to build digital thinking into the production. TH_NK is designing an experience that plays off the paranoia of the thriller, engaging viewers and encouraging debate around some of the drama’s biggest themes. The experience will play out in the run up to TX and extend the experience across the six episodes.

Directed by Marc Munden (The Mark of Cain, The Crimson Petal and the White), Utopia will be produced by Kudos Film & TV for Channel 4. The producer is Rebekah Wray-Rogers (This is England ’88) and executive producers are Karen Wilson (Hustle, Spooks), Jane Featherstone (Spooks, Life on Mars, The Hour) and Dennis Kelly (Pulling).