Christopher Eccleston to Star in BBC Drama, Come Home

Christopher Eccleston is set to star in a new BBC One drama series, Come Home, where he will play a father forced to cope after his wife walks out on the family.

The three-part series has been written by Danny Brockelhurst and will be filmed in Northern Ireland. The Beeb promises a story that will examine “the messy realities of parenthood, marriage, and what happens when a mother switches the reset button on her life”. Starring as Eccleston’s wife will be Paula Malcolmson, a familiar face to viewers of US series such as Deadwood and Ray Donovan.

“What does it take for a mother to walk out on her family, leaving her children behind? What impact does it have and how do others judge her? This is a drama about how lives cannot just be walked away from. At the heart of the series is an emotional mystery; why did Marie flee?”

Writer Danny Brocklehurst, a winner of BAFTA and International Emmy awards and veteran of series such as Shameless, The Street, Clocking Off, and Exile, says:

“Chris and Paula are two of the UK’s finest actors and I couldn’t be more thrilled to have them in Come Home. The drama takes Greg and Marie on a hugely emotional journey as it explores the fallout from a mother leaving her children and it requires actors of their calibre to pull it off. I’ve been a fan of Chris Eccleston ever since I first saw him in Cracker and have wanted to work with him my entire career. Paula is a stunning character actress who brings credibility and depth to every role she plays. Their combination promises to be amazing.”

Eccleston is enjoying a fruitful relationship with the BBC’s drama department of late, with the second series of The A Word expected on BBC One this autumn.

Coincidentally, the news of this commission comes in the same week as the premiere of the second series of ITV’s Safe House. The drama, which starred Eccleston in its first run as an ex-police officer charged with protecting a vulnerable family in hiding, enjoyed a successful run and was swiftly recommissioned. But with production apparently underway Eccleston dropped out for unexplained ‘confidential reasons’, leading to a complete rethink which has resulted in a new cast and different location.

Come Home will be screened on BBC One next year – more details at the BBC Media Centre. Safe House series 2 starts on ITV1 on Thursday 7th September at 9:00pm. View the trailer at Radio Times.

  • Bob James

    I remember, to my own shame, when I ridiculed Eccleston when he refused to return for TDOTD. To be fair, I think if everyone had been honest (and to be equally fair, though Chris was evasive at the time, he actually did explain, without going into detail, why he left Doctor Who after one series), his initial departure could have been easily explained as “creative differences”, instead of the false narratives that were put out there. He seems, to his credit, to be an actor who goes where the substantial work is, and if it means staying on with a character, like in The Leftovers, or The A Word, because there is substance and purpose to it, he’ll stay. If not, nothing will keep him from going. Nick Briggs did put out the whisper of hope that Eccleston might someday participate in Big Finish. I certainly hope so, as this would give Chris the opportunity to tale the Ninth Doctor and explore the possibilities he didn’t get to on television.