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Friday, 27 August 2021

Channel 4 commissions 80’s crime-comedy The Curse

Channel 4 has commissioned the brand-new crime-comedy The Curse, written by the combined multi-BAFTA award-winning partnership of Tom Davis and director James De Frond (Murder in Successville, King Gary), along with Steve Stamp, Allan Mustafa, Hugo Chegwin (People Just Do Nothing). The Curse is a comedy caper set in London in the early 80's, following a gang of hopeless small time crooks who through their own stupidity and poor judgement find themselves embroiled in one of the biggest gold heists in history.  The series is produced by Shiny Button, a Banijay UK company.

The 80's saw the elevation of materialistic values, in a decade where the rich got richer (mainly at the expense of others). The same era saw a rise in armed robberies with local lads taking from the very people they felt were robbing them.

The comedy is a fictionalized tale loosely inspired by an infamous robbery from the early 80's, where six men raided a depot near one of London's airports thinking they'd walk away with £50,000 in cash, only to stumble across seven thousand bars of gold, with a street value of tens of millions!

The Curse stars Allan Mustafa (playing Albert Fantoni), Steve Stamp (playing Sidney Wilson), Hugo Chegwin (playing Phil 'The Captain' Pocket) and Tom Davis (playing Big Mick Neville), a group of hapless small-time criminals who become embroiled in the plot.  They are normal working-class men who just dabble in low level crime to make ends meet during the recession hit decade.  But the naïve gang royally bite off more than they can chew with the heist and subsequently are stuck with the impossible task of coming up with a plot to rid themselves of the loot before they get nicked or even worse, end up dead…

Emer Kenny (Pramface, Beaver Falls) plays Natasha, wife of criminal Albert, who narrates the tale. The series also stars Peter Ferninando (The Letter for the King) as Crazy Clive Cornell, a "proper" gangster that the gang become involved with during the heist, Ambreen Razia (This Way Up) as Detective Thread, Geoff Bell (His Dark Materials) as Detective Saunders and Michael Smiley (Luther) as Ronnie Gatlin.

The Curse is a tale of friendship. Can a group of childhood friends stick together when they find themselves transformed overnight from nobody's to somebody's and what are the sacrifices that they must make to survive…and ultimately is all the money in the world ever really worth it?

It's a story of trust, greed, ambition, class and in-equality.

Fiona McDermott, Head of Comedy at Channel 4, said: "It's been such a treat to see these mega comedy talents collide with The Curse. As gripping as it is daft, we're thrilled to have such an ambitiously funny show from these brilliant creatives coming to Channel 4."

Steve Stamp, added: "I've always wanted a mullet so really this is just an excuse to do that. But also an absolute privilege to work with such a talented group of people and to be making something with this level of scale and ambition. Really excited to start shooting."

Tom Davis, commented: "Ever since first meeting Allan, Steve and Hugo myself and James have been buzzing to work with them. Channel 4 has such an incredible history in bringing working class stories to life, we're excited to add this tale to the mix."

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