‘This is such a special role and a challenge for any actor,’ Charlie Heaton expresses his excitement in joining the biopic.
Stranger Things star Charlie Heaton has signed on to play deformed Joseph Merrick in a new BBC version of The Elephant Man.
John Hurt previously portrayed the tragic character in David Lynch’s 1980 film adaptation of Sir Frederick Treves’ book, and now Heaton is tackling the role.
“I’m extremely excited and honoured to be given the opportunity to take on the portrayal of Joseph Merrick in the BBC’s adaption of The Elephant Man,” the actor says. “This is such a special role and a challenge for any actor. Joseph has such an incredible story and I can’t wait to go on this journey and bring him to life.”
Richard Laxton is directing the mini-series, which will be shot in Wales ahead of a 2019 air date.
Merrick, who suffered from a condition which left him with monstrous deformities, escaped the workhouses of Victorian England to perform as part of touring freak shows. Treves, a doctor, befriended him in 1884, and introduced him to high society while he lived at the London Hospital.
Merrick died in 1890, aged 27.
The Elephant Man has also been performed by David Bowie, Mark Hamill, and most recently Bradley Cooper in his West End theatre debut.
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