James McAvoy & Sharon Horgan To Star In Lockdown Film ‘Together’ From Dennis Kelly For BBC
Whilst restrictions continue to lift for the UK, James McAvoy & Sharon Horgan are set to head back into lockdown for ‘Together’, a funny and painfully poignant love story from Dennis Kelly (‘Utopia’, ‘Pulling’, ‘The Third Day’).
Directed by the Academy, Emmy and Bafta Award-winning director, Stephen Daldry (‘The Crown’, ‘Billy Elliot’, ‘The Reader’) the film is set in the UK from the first days of the Covid-19 lockdown in March 2020 until present day. This is the story of a family, like so many, who found a way to survive – together. It is the hilarious and heartbreaking story of a husband and wife who are forced to re-evaluate themselves and their relationship through the reality of lockdown.
“I think everyone who got involved in this film had no intention of doing a Covid drama but then we read Dennis’ script and changed our minds,” comments Horgan. “We shot this in 10 days so it was a beautifully stressful experience. Working with Dennis again – and Stephen Daldry and James McAvoy, both of whom I’ve admired for years, was a joy. But it also felt like we were making something important. And the fact that it feels like news means that the Covid death toll, the tragedy of so many lives lost unnecessarily has not been talked about enough.”
She, played by Horgan, is a charity worker, a coordinator for all of Europe at a refugee charity. She’s the daughter of a dentist father and an ‘old socialist’ mother – the only grandparent still around.
“Dennis writes so wittily for these characters and his script had me within the first few pages,” adds McAvoy. “When I heard Sharon was involved with Stephen Daldry directing it was a no brainer. It’s a hilarious, heartfelt, entertaining and unconsciously funny exploration of a relationship and a couple facing real tragedy across a year we have all lived through.”
He, played by McAvoy, is a self-employed, self-made man who runs a boutique computing consultancy. He’s been forced to furlough his staff and take up growing vegetables – something he’s very proud of.
There is also Athur/Arty, their 10-year-old son, who the one thing that has kept his parents relationship together… until lockdown.
“Together is about a couple who totally hate each other, but have somehow found a way of existing together by not talking to, thinking about, noticing, communicating with or being in the same room as each other – then lockdown happens,” said writer Dennis Kelly. “It’s about how humans negotiate their shared experiences when they think they have nothing in common other than staying alive, and it’s about how you can hate what you love and love what you hate. And Sharon Horgan and James McAvoy are brilliant in it.”
‘Together’, a Shoebox Films and Sonia Friedman Productions film for BBC Two and BBC Film, is written by Dennis Kelly, produced by Sonia Friedman and Guy Heeley and directed by Stephen Daldry. The executive producers are Dennis Kelly; Rose Garnett, Director BBC Film; and Gaynor Holmes for BBC.