Coming to UK TV screens (Channel 4) in November… a new four-part thriller titled Top Boy, starring Ashley Walters, whose name has come up a bit here on S&A, which usually means we probably should be keeping an eye on him; from the 2009 BBC adaptation of the award winning novel Small Island, in which he starred alongside a host of other shining UK black acting talent, like Naomie Harris and David Oyelowo; to Demons Never Die, the teen horror flick being produced by Idris Elba, girl gang retribution thriller SKET, and Dominic Savage’s dramatic/improvisational BBC serial Love Life, most recently.
Dude is busy across the pond. Although he’s appeared in some Hollywood flicks – notably Get Rich or Die Tryin’, alongside 50 Cent.
Back to Top Boy… synopsis:
Meet drug dealer and gang leader Dushane (Ashley Walters). He is charming, sexy, clever, and at 26 years old has ‘already run out of things to be – except this’. When he gets the attention of ex-convict and drug dealer Bobby Raikes (Geoff Bell) he seizes an opportunity to be more, to have more. With his friend Sully (Kane Robinson) at his side, Dushane is on track to becoming Top Boy. Dushane and Sully’s violent quest to take over the supply of drugs in the Summerhouse Estate impacts on the lives of a number of the residents. The emotional heart of the story lies with Ra’Nell (Malcolm Kamulete), a bright 13-year-old struggling to create a stable home environment for his mentally ill mother Lisa (Sharon Duncan Brewster). Ra’Nell’s best friend Gem (Giacomo Mancini) will do anything to be accepted into Dushane’s gang whilst Summerhouse resident Heather (Kierston Wareing), pregnant and penniless, is determined to give her baby the chances she never had – “even if it means doing one wrong thing to get to the right place”
I can hear some of you already – “groan, another movie about black drug dealers and gangs.”
Written by screenwriter and novelist Ronan Bennett, and directed by Yann Demange, Top Boy is said to be based on first hand extensive research by Bennett, who met with and interviewed local kids who gave candid accounts of drug and gang culture life on the estates.
No trailer yet though… but soon enough I imagine. November is just around the corner.