The first trailer has been unveiled for Lenny Henry’s upcoming one-off fictionalised account of his life as a working-class teenager in 1970s Dudley.
Danny and the Human Zoo centres round Danny Fearon (played by newcomer Kascion Franklin), a talented impressionist, and his working-class Jamaican family, as he rises to fame as a stand-up comedian.
The 90-minute drama is described as “a high-energy, nostalgic period piece about the decade we love to hate, and its music, fashion and television”.
The cast includes Lenny Henry (The Syndicate) as Danny’s dad, Cecilia Noble (The Bill) as his mum, Arthur Darvill (Doctor Who) as Danny’s manager Jonesy, Richard Wilson (Merlin) as promoter James Broughton, and Mark Benton (Land Girls) as seasoned entertainer Syd Bolton.
Danny and the Human Zoo will air at 9pm on Monday 31 August on BBC One.
Watch the trailer…
The official synopsis reads: “Danny’s world is a series of complex minefields which he has to negotiate: his home life – which his ebullient mother rules with an iron fist in an iron glove; his love life – where the Irish girl he’s in lust with won’t give him the time of day until he wins his first competition; and finally the ups and downs of his emerging career.
“When Danny wins a talent competition at his local club it’s not long until he’s working the comedy circuit. Audiences can’t get enough, applauding as he effortlessly morphs into Mohammed Ali, Tommy Cooper and Frank Spencer, and eventually he hits the big time on TV – an unheard-of achievement for a young black boy.
“But an unscrupulous manager takes advantage of Danny and forces him to star in a show, the ‘Musical Minstrel Cavalcade’. Danny hits rock bottom. Having made his name by becoming other people, Danny has to save himself by finding out who he really is.”
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