Kit de Waal’s 2016 debut nove: My Name Is Leon told the heart-wrenching but moving story of Leon a nine-year-old mixed-race boy who fights to reunite his family after being taken into care and separated from his blue-eyed, blond, baby brother Jake. Now, with an all-star cast including Sir Lenny Henry, Christopher Eccleston, Malachi Kirby, Monica Dolan, and Olivia Williams and newcomer Cole Martin starring as Leon, the story has been adapted by BBC2 for a one-off drama.
Set in Birmingham in the 1980s Leon’s struggle is pitched against the backdrop of the race riots, forcing the young boy to explore the notions of identity and belonging.
Mona Qureshi, Executive Producer, says: "We are absolutely delighted to be working with Douglas Road, Ringside and Vicarious on this very special adaptation of My Name Is Leon for BBC1. I can’t wait to see Lynette and our fantastic cast bring Shola’s take on Kit De Waal’s brilliant and utterly affecting story to life."
So here's all you need to know about My Name Is Leon on BBC2...
My Name Is Leon plot
The story of My Name Is Leon is told from the point of view of Leon, a nine-year-old boy who adores his golden-haired half-brother Jake and vows to look after him, no matter what. Despite his young age, Leon learns to take care of Jake whenever his depressed, painkiller-addicted mother Carol takes to her bed. But then, the pair are suddenly taken into care. As a white baby, Jake is quickly adopted but as a mixed-race nine-year-old the future doesn’t look as rosy for Leon who's determined to put his fractured family back together. With the help of his wonderful but ailing foster mother Maureen, and his favourite action figure Sergeant Smith by his side, Leon must navigate an uncertain world, racial tensions, a whole host of colourful characters and a system that is pitted against him.
Can be seen on: iplayer https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episodes/m00184br/my-name-is-leon