CBBC today announces it has commissioned another original new family drama, The Lost Christmas, for broadcast 2011/2012 on BBC One.
The Lost Christmas stars BAFTA, Olivier and two-time Emmy award-winner Eddie Izzard as Anthony, a mysterious man who appears on Manchester's snowy streets at Christmas Eve with a remarkable gift: the ability to find the lost.
LA-based feature film specialist Impact Film & Television will make 90-minute The Lost Christmas, in which Izzard plays the “strange, enigmatic” Anthony.
He wakes up in a Manchester street on Christmas Eve not knowing where he is or what he is there to do, and the drama follows him for 24 hours as he “transforms the lives of five ordinary people whose lives have been shattered by decisions of their past”.
The characters he helps include a young boy who lost his parents in a car crash, a couple who lost their child, and a man, played by Jason Flemyng, who has lost the book he used to read to his daughter.
John Hay, who wrote the 90-minute Christmas drama with Dave Logar, will also direct through Impact.
Hay told Broadcast: “Eddie and I always wanted to do something that happens in a single day, and we both love Christmas films. It’s going to be a very emotional piece and he [Izzard] is not going to do ‘funny Eddie’. It is structured like Crash, in that a string of apparently unconnected episodes piece together at the end, and has the feelgood factor of It’s A Wonderful Life.”
He added there was a “twist around the sense of self sacrifice”, in the vein of an Oscar Wilde fairytale.
Commissioned by Jay Hunt for BBC One and Anne Gilchrist for CBBC, the special 90-minute film, which also stars Jason Flemyng will be made and set in Manchester.
The drama follows hot on the heels of CBBC's other recent original family drama commissions – Ingenious by Jeanette Winterson starring Una Stubbs, and a Simon Nye adaptation of children's classic Just William.