Julie Walters to star in A Short Stay In Switzerland
Julie Walters (Filth: The Mary Whitehouse Story; Mamma Mia!) is set to star in A Short Stay In Switzerland for BBC One, a drama inspired by the true story of Dr Anne Turner by award-winning writer Frank McGuinness.
Kate Harwood, Controller, Series and Serials, BBC Drama Production, says: "One of Ireland's foremost dramatists, Frank brings a lightness of touch, dark wit and a heart-wrenching humanity to this piece inspired by Anne Turner's story about life and death, love and family."
Having just witnessed the death of her husband Jack from an incurable neurological disease, Anne Turner (Julie Walters) is diagnosed with a near identical illness.
With determined rationality, Anne's answer is that once her illness has reached a critical point, she will take her own life. And she needs her children's support.
But the more her son and two daughters struggle to gain consensus over their mother's desire to die as they struggle to find another way through, the further they pull apart.
From Jessica's silent recriminations to Sophie's stubborn practicality, the magnitude of the situation threatens to tear the family to pieces.
Anne must also face the fury of her best friend Claire – whose opposing views bring them into direct and vocal conflict.
Writer Frank McGuinness adds: "As a doctor Anne Turner lived and worked by her principles, and she chose to die by them. This film recognises that rare courage."
Filming in London from August 2008 for transmission in winter 2009, A Short Stay In Switzerland is a BBC Drama Production for BBC One.
The drama is produced by Liz Trubridge (The Riff Raff Element; Sex Chips and Rock n' Roll).
The executive producer is Ruth Caleb (Last Resort, Bullet Boy, Learners and Red Dust starring Hilary Swank).
The director is Simon Curtis (Cranford, Five Days, Freezing).
Writer Frank McGuinness' credits include: Observe The Sons Of Ulster Marching Towards the Somme (which won a host of awards including London Evening Standard Most Promising Playwright); Henhouse; Carthaginians; and the film adaptation of Dancing At Lughnasa, which starred Meryl Streep.
Further casting is to be announced.
A Short Stay In Switzerland was commissioned by Jane Tranter, BBC Controller, Fiction.
Notes to Editors
BBC Drama Production is a world leader in producing much-loved and critically-acclaimed dramas including Criminal Justice starring Ben Whishaw; Cranford; Oliver Twist; Five Days; Waking The Dead; Silent Witness; Lark Rise To Candleford; Sense And Sensibility; BBC Four's recent Curse of Comedy season; the forthcoming drama for BBC Two, House Of Saddam; plus this autumn's highlights on BBC One – Survivors; Tess Of The D'Urbervilles and Little Dorrit.