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Flesh and Blood
A father's world is turned upside down when he discovers the truth about his origins.
Adopted at birth, Joe Broughton (Christopher Eccleston) is overwhelmed by an obsessive desire to trace his real parents after his daughter Marie is born. When he discovers that his mother and father have learning disabilities and never knew they had a child, his world is blown apart.
For Joe and his wife, Cath (Emma Cunniffe), it's the beginning of a rollercoaster journey which challenges not only his preconceptions about disability, but also his sense of identity.
The key roles of Joe's birth mother and father - Janet and Harry - are played by Dorothy Cockin and Peter Kirby from a local amateur dramatics group. They were cast after an extensive search among people with learning disabilities in the North-West of England.
Writer Peter Bowker spent 12 years as a special needs teacher before becoming a full-time writer. His writing credits include Undercover Heart (nominated for a BAFTA Award for Best Drama Series) and Blackpool.
"In Flesh and Blood I wanted to explore what it feels like to believe that you've got no history, that your history starts with you," he says. "How would it affect you, how far would it throw you?"
Executive Producer Laura Mackie adds: "Peter Bowker adapted his script in response to the casting of Peter and Dorothy to reflect elements of their own lives. They have no screen acting experience, but their life experience helped shape the film. It was an unusual but highly collaborative production process."
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