You will be redirected back to your article in seconds
Back to IndieWire

John Boyega To Headline BBC Drama On 2008 “Honeytrap Murder” Of 16-Year-Old

John Boyega To Headline BBC Drama On 2008 "Honeytrap Murder" Of 16-Year-Old

A rather sad, sad real-life story.

John Boyega (Attack The Block, Da Brick) will star in an upcoming BBC3 docu-drama production based on the on the 2008 murder of teenager Shakilus Townsend titled My Murder.

Also known as the “Honeytrap murder,” the production will tell the true story of how then 16-year-old Shakilus Townsend was lured to his death by a girl he really liked (Samantha Joseph, also 16), and whom he apparently thought felt the same way about him, but clearly didn’t.

The disturbing act by Samantha Joseph was all in an attempt to get back with her older ex boyfriend, Danny McLean. The story goes that she was dating both Townsend and McLean simultaneously, McLean eventually found out and dumped her. She wanted him back, and essentially made a pact with McLean that she’d bring Townsend to him for what was to be a thrashing.

Joseph lead Townsend to McLean, his brothers and friends (members of a South London gang), where he was beaten with a baseball bat. and stabbed in the chest five times; he later died from huge amounts of blood loss.

The group responsible for his death, including the young lady who willingly lead him to it, were all convicted of murder in 2009.

In the BBC3 project, John Boyega will play Shakilus Townsend, Simona Zivkovska as Samantha Joseph, and Malachi Kirby as the older Danny McLean.

Levi David Addai wrote the script, which will promarily follow those 3 three key characters.

Scheduled for a March 26th air date, the will “get behind the headlines of the murder using a hard-hitting script and documentary techniques.”

I found the below BBC News report on the real-life story:

This Article is related to: News and tagged



With the amount of care they have taken with this programme I suspect that it will be fair and balanced. Only she can adequately explain what she did and why she did it. The jury heard her give evidence yet still convicted her of murder to which there has been no appeal. The dynamic here was much more complex than Joseph being in the thrall of the not much older McLean.


Rose Leclerc you atually talk like you knew Danny, did you?

rose leclerc

I hope Louise Corley at the BBC didn't miss that Samantha Joseph was actually 15 at the time of the fatal attack on Shakilus – not 16 as reported here. So this drama involves sexual activity with a minor and not someone over the age of consent. And there is the issue of the threat against her of a beating if she didn't cooperate…and the history of sexual violence against teenage girls by Danny McLean. Yes, she contributed to the situation but did she know or suspect that the assault would escalate to murder? Hope this drama-docu is balanced and not just a rehash of the lurid and prurient media frenzy that usually happens when a pretty young girl is involved in serious crime…


congratz to john pleasure working wiv u


Oh. Another "TV role" for John. I guess those movie offers aren't pouring in for him like they do his fellow young Brit actors who get buzz after appearing in a film highly talked about within the film industry. Hmmmmm. I wonder why?


This story is so sad and horrific.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *