Jennifer Jason Leigh joins Benedict Cumberbatch in ‘Patrick Melrose’
The limited series is coming together
Showtime announced today that Academy Award nominee Jennifer Jason Leigh (The Hateful Eight) and Hugo Weaving (The Matrix trilogy) have joined the cast of “Patrick Melrose,” a limited series starring and executive produced by Oscar nominee and Emmy winner Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game, Sherlock).
Leigh and Weaving will star as the parents of “Patrick Melrose.” Anna Madeley, who also joins the cast, will play Melrose’s wife. BAFTA Award nominee David Nicholls (Far From the Madding Crowd, One Day) is writing all five episodes of the television adaptation, which will be directed by celebrated film director Edward Berger (Deutchland 83, Jack). Patrick Melrose will begin shooting in London and the South of France in August.
Based on the acclaimed Patrick Melrose series of semi-autobiographical novels written by Edward St. Aubyn, “Patrick Melrose” skewers the upper class as it tracks the protagonist’s harrowing odyssey from a deeply traumatic childhood through adult substance abuse and, ultimately, toward recovery.
With each episode devoted to one of the five novels, the series will encompass the saga of Patrick Melrose’s life, from his horribly abusive youth at the hands of his father (Weaving) and the mother who tacitly condones the behavior (Leigh), to the outrageous playboy he becomes and the struggles he endures to defy the damage of his own past. The limited series will be a true television saga, both gripping and humorous, from Nicholls’ adaptation, sweeping through the South of France in the 1960s, New York in the 1980s and Britain in the early 2000’s.
Leigh has received Golden Globe nominations for her work in The Hateful Eight and Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle, as well as four individual Film Independent Spirit Award nominations for her performances in Anomalisa, Margot at the Wedding, Georgia and Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle. Other memorable film appearances include LBJ, The Anniversary Party, The Hudsucker Proxy, Georgia, Miami Blues, Last Exit to Brooklyn, The Big Picture and Fast Times at Ridgemont High. She appears in the limited series TWIN PEAKS, currently airing on SHOWTIME and previously recurred on the SHOWTIME series WEEDS.
In addition to playing “Agent Smith” in The Matrix trilogy and “Elrond” in The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Weaving’s other notable film roles include Hacksaw Ridge, The Hobbit, The Cloud Atlas, Captain America: The First Avenger, V for Vendetta and his breakout performance in the award-winning Australian drama Proof.
Madeley has had an extensive career on the British stage and on television, performing with the Royal Shakespeare Company and with the BBC. Most recently, Madeley appeared in the television production of The Crown.
A native of Germany, Berger has won the International Emmy Award, two Adolf Grimme Awards for directing, most recently in 2016 for Deutchland 83, and a German Academy Award for his film Jack, which premiered in competition at the Berlin International Film Festival.