Sheridan Smith’s ‘Isolation Stories’ ITV Short Drops On Monday
Now, 'essential' live TV is filmed with a fraction of the cast and crew, and several dramas and soaps have had to cease production altogether.
But ITV's new show has found an expert way to adapt to our new normal, filming a series of short dramas from within actors' homes.
Landing on Monday (4th May) Isolation Stories is executive produced by Oscar-nominated writer and producer Jeff Pope and Tom Dunbar (A Confession), while Paul Whittington, Paul Andrew Williams, Louise Hooper and David Blair will take on directing duties.
The series is comprised of four 15-minute films based on life during quarantine, where stars will be self-filming in their own homes.
Written by a cast of award-winning writers and directors, ITV explains the dramas will be "assembled in conditions the production company has never faced before," and will involve actors recording their own scenes while directors look on and give feedback via their mobile phones.
The short stories are all centring around "funny, sad, heartwarming and poignant" moments during lockdown.
And the first episode, named Mel, features Cilla and Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps star, Sheridan Smith.
Sheridan is heavily pregnant IRL, and will be starring in the titular role as a pregnant woman isolating alone.
Mel faces the prospect of having to go through childbirth without the married father of her child, who has chosen to isolate with his wife and family.
Plus, to make matters worse, even her family have kicked her to the curb.
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Giving a picture of her bleak headspace, a summary of the episode reads: "She might be the only person in the country who doesn't mind isolation. At least everyone else will understand what it's like to be miserable..."
Sheridan - whose partner Jamie Horn helped film - said: "I am heavily pregnant and have been isolating at home so I jumped at the chance to make a drama about the massive drama going on all around us right now.
"I think it's really important to try and reflect what's happening to us whilst it is still actually happening."
The subsequent episodes will centre around various other characters as they struggle with the highs and lows of lockdown life.
Episode two, Ron & Russell, will star Robert Glenister and his actor son, Tom Glenister, as a father and son who are quarantining together. Father Ron (Robert) is ill with COVID-19 and is confused about where he is and what is happening to him. One of his sons, Russell (Tom) is trapped isolating with him and the pair find their relationship strained.
"Old wounds are reopened as they are forced to spend all their time together," ITV says, adding: "Russell becomes increasingly frantic as he tries to help Ron through the illness."
The third episode, Mike & Rochelle, will see Darren Boyd and Angela Griffin appear as Mike, a "paranoid, self-absorbed hypochondriac", and his psychiatrist Rochelle, respectively. Mike, who has found all his worst fears come true books in an online session with his shrink, who must try and talk him down from the precipice of a breakdown.
Finally, Eddie Marsan, his sons Blue and Bodie, and David Threlfall are set to star in the fourth episode, Karen. It will tell the story of a grandad (David Threlfall) who tried to bring his broken family back together by the limited means he has.
"Able to pass by his son-in-law's house on the way to the grocery store, he stops off outside their window to lark about and make his grandkids smile," reads the summary. "But his son-in-law (Eddie Marsan), still suffering after his wife Karen left him, doesn't welcome these daily visits."
The four episodes are written by Jeff Pope, Gaby Chiappe, Neil McKay and William Ivory.
These look set to be a must watch!
Isolation Stories begins with Mel on Monday 4th May at 9pm on ITV.
Ron & Russell will air at the same time on Tuesday 5th, Mike & Rochelle on Wednesday 6th, and finally Karen on Thursday 7th.
Featured Image Credit: ITV
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