Williams’ Fallout to become Channel 4 drama

Roy Williams’ play Fallout is to be adapted as a single drama for Channel 4.

The drama is being made by Company Pictures and directed by Ian Rickson, former artistic director of the Royal Court. It will mark the first time Rickson has directed for TV.

The production stars Lennie James, from the American series Jericho, as a policeman returning to an estate he grew up on to investigate the murder of a black teenager.

Channel 4 head of drama Liza Marshall said: “This is exactly what Channel 4 drama should be doing – shining light and hopefully greater understanding on the major issues facing contemporary society. Roy Williams captures this world with authenticity and passion and I am sure the result will be as gripping and involving as it is thought-provoking and powerful.”

The original play, staged at the Royal Court, was written as a reflection on race, law and order in the aftermath of the Stephen Lawrence and Damilola Taylor cases and has been rewritten in light of the recent escalation in youth violence.

Williams said: “I remember following the Damilola Taylor Case, and the feelings that I had. Anger with the killers, anger with whoever had let those kids down. I felt it was important as well as necessary to write a piece that allowed all my feelings, and the feelings of those kids and police, to be expressed.”

The drama will be broadcast in the spring of next year.

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The Orange Tree Theatre in Richmond, London. Photo: Noel Foster