Kara Tointon, Harriet Walter and Laura Aikman have joined the cast of Cary Grant biopic “Archie” alongside Jason Isaacs, who will play the matinee idol himself.
Aikman (“Bluestone 42”) is set to play Grant’s ex-wife Dyan Cannon, Walter (“Succession”) will play his mother Elsie Leach and Tointon (“Mr Selfridge”) will play a younger version of Elsie.
Also joining the cast are Henry Lloyd-Hughes (“Ragdoll”), Ian Pulston-Davies (“DI Ray”), Ian McNeice (“Doc Martin”), Jason Watkins (“McDonald & Dodds”), Lisa Faulkner (“EastEnders”) and Niamh Cusack (“The Virtues”).
Meanwhile Dainton Anderson (“Patrick Melrose”), Calam Lynch (“Bridgerton”) and Oaklee Prendergast (“Home”) will play young versions of Grant, whose real name was Archie Leach.
The series will follow Grant from his early life in Bristol, England, where he was born into extreme poverty in the 1900s, before auditioning for a music hall act, a move which would eventually change his life. The troupe went on tour to the U.S. where a chance meeting with comedian George Burns gave him a hoist up the career ladder and before long he had re-branded himself as Cary Grant and emerged a movie star.
His career success didn’t lead to happiness, however, especially after three failed marriages. That doesn’t stop him from going to bat for love a fourth time, and he soon finds himself wooing young actor Dyan Cannon, who would eventually become his fourth wife.
“Archie” is written by Jeff Pope and produced by his ITV Studios label Etta Pictures. Pope secured the blessing of Grant’s daughter Jennifer and his ex-wife Cannon before writing the series and both women are exec producers. Britbox International are co-producing. The series is set to air on ITV’s new streaming platform ITVX, later this year, followed by linear network ITV.
Paul Andrew Williams (“London to Brighton”) will direct while Rebecca Hodgson (“Sherwood”) produces. Production is already underway in the U.K.
Polly Hill, head of drama at ITV commissioned the series and will oversee its production for ITVX. ITV Studios are handling international distribution.