Martin Clunes reunites with Manhunt writer for new ITV drama Out There
Clunes will star in the new series about a farmer taking on county lines drug dealers.
ITV has announced the commission of a new six-part drama series, Out There, which will star Martin Clunes as a farmer confronted with dark forces seeping into his rural community.
The series, which comes from Manhunt writer and director duo Ed Whitmore and Marc Evans, will see Clunes play Nathan Williams, a man grieving the death of his wife two years ago.
He is now a single parent to teenager Johnny, and when his son and his livelihood are threatened by local county lines drug dealers, he finds himself embarking on a mission to protect his family, his homestead and his legacy.
As well as Clunes, the series also stars Louis Ashbourne Serkis as Johnny, Mark Lewis Jones as Caleb Williams, Natalia Kostrzewa as Eva, Carly-Sophia Davies as Sadie and Gerran Howell as Rhys. Filming is currently under way in Wales.
Clunes previously spoke about the series on The One Show while promoting the Doc Martin Christmas special, calling it "quite dark".
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Clunes has now said in a statement: "I’m very happy to be working with Marc Evans and Ed Whitmore again after the success of Manhunt. Out There couldn’t be more different from Doc Martin. It’s pretty dark, but definitely a story worth telling."
Meanwhile, ITV’s head of drama Polly Hill said: "Out There is a brilliantly compelling drama, from the team behind Manhunt, where county lines become very real for a father and son already dealing with the modern challenges of running a farm.
"Martin Clunes is wonderful as Nathan, in a drama full of surprises, as he tries to navigate the best way to save his son, in a world he doesn’t understand."
Writer and executive producer Ed Whitmore added: "County lines is a particularly vicious and ruthless wave of drug dealing that uses fear and violence to coerce, often vulnerable, young people into working as runners and dealers. It has become a serious and rapidly increasing problem across the whole of the UK, so it felt like an important and timely story to tell.
"I’ve always been fascinated by the notion of things being hidden in plain sight and the way in which different social worlds can co-exist cheek-by-jowl until, one day, they collide. The fundamental premise of Out There - a widowed farmer who discovers that his son has fallen foul of county lines - immediately spoke to me as a story I wanted to tell."
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