BBC confirms new Sheridan Smith drama

Sheridan Smith BBC One has confirmed the latest drama project to star Sheridan Smith, The Moorside Project – a drama we first listed on Production Intelligence back in April 2015.

The two-parter will explore the story behind the headlines of the disappearance and search for missing schoolgirl Shannon Matthews in 2008.

The focus will not be on the events themselves, but rather on the determination of a group of women behind the scenes who brought the community together in their search for the missing child. The series will also examine the repercussions and impact on the women when the truth about the crime was finally uncovered.

The Moorside Project comes from ITV Studios and the award-winning team behind Appropriate Adult: writer Neil McKay and executive producer Jeff Pope, the latter previously having worked with Smith on Mrs Biggs and Cilla. The director is Paul Whittington, and filming is set for spring.

McKay said of the production: “This drama takes us into the heart of a story and a community that was defined more by prejudice than genuine understanding. It has been a privilege to research and write. To have the story brought to life by such an outstanding cast, led by the extraordinary Sheridan Smith, is a truly thrilling prospect.”

We first listed the project and its producer, Ken Horn, on PI in April 2015. From 12 January, subscribers can find details of the line producer, casting director and production designer on PI, with more names and specific dates to follow.

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