Benedict Cumberbatch Melrose

While Benedict Cumberbatch‘s future on Sherlock is uncertain at the moment, the actor has locked up another part for television. The Doctor Strange star will star in Showtime’s adaptation of Edward St. Aubyn‘s Melrose novels, including Never Mind, Bad News, Some Hope, and Mother’s Milk. Cumberbatch will play Aubyn’s protagonist, Patrick Melrose, in the miniseries.

Below, learn more about the Benedict Cumberbatch Showtime show.

Variety reports each episode of Melrose will cover one of St. Aubyn’s books, covering a few days in the life of Patrick Melrose. One installment will show him living in the South of France during the 1960s, while another episode will have him in New York City in the 1980s. The character then spends the early 2000s in Great Britain.

Cumberbatch starts shooting the drama in August. The character he’s playing is described as “an aristocratic and outrageously funny playboy,” which sounds like the kind of role we’d like to see the very funny Cumberbatch play. The story isn’t packed with laughs from the sound of it, though. Melrose’s journey offers “a window into a world of utter decadence, amorality, greed, snobbery, and cruelty—welcome to the declining British aristocracy.”

Here’s the synopsis for the Melrose novels:

By turns harrowing and hilarious, these beautifully written novels dissect the English upper class as we follow Patrick Melrose’s story from child abuse to heroin addiction and recovery. Never Mind, the first novel, unfolds over a day and an evening at the family’s chateaux in the south of France, where the sadistic and terrifying figure of David Melrose dominates the lives of his five-year-old son, Patrick, and his rich and unhappy American mother, Eleanor. From abuse to addiction, the second novel, Bad News opens as the twenty-two-year-old Patrick sets off to collect his father’s ashes from New York, where he will spend a drug-crazed twenty-four hours. And back in England, the third novel, Some Hope, offers a sober and clean Patrick the possibility of recovery. The fourth novel, the Booker-shortlisted Mother’s Milk, returns to the family chateau, where Patrick, now married and a father himself, struggles with child rearing, adultery, his mother’s desire for assisted suicide, and the loss of the family home to a New Age foundation.

Edward St. Aubyn offers a window into a world of utter decadence, amorality, greed, snobbery, and cruelty—welcome to the declining British aristocracy.

Screenwriter David Nicholls adapted Aubyn’s four stories. Nicholls is the novelist and screenwriter behind One Day, director Thomas Vinterberg’s recent Far from the Madding Crowd adaptation, and both the novel and script for Starter for 10. I haven’t read Starter for 10, but the movie with James McAvoy, Dominic Cooper, and Rebecca Hall is absolutely delightful. See that Tom Hanks and Sam Mendes-produced film if you haven’t yet.

No premiere date is set yet for Melrose.

Cool Posts From Around the Web: