Mark Gatiss to direct Una Stubbs in MR James' festive ghostly story The Tractate Middoth
Thursday 05 September 2013
Mark Gatiss is to be reunited with his Sherlock co-star Una Stubbs when she takes a lead role in his directorial debut, a festive ghost story.
Horror fan Gatiss - who first found fame with dark comedy troupe The League Of Gentlemen - is adapting The Tractate Middoth, a short chiller written by MR James, for BBC2 this Christmas.
He has been a writer on BBC1's Sherlock, in which he also starred as Holmes's brother Mycroft, alongside Stubbs who has played landlady Mrs Hudson.
Gatiss - a regular writer of sci-fi series on Doctor Who - will also be directing a former assistant of the Time Lord in his new half-hour drama, Louise Jameson who played Leela in the mid-1970s opposite fourth Doctor Tom Baker.
Other stars in the cast of The Tractate Middoth include Sacha Dhawan - whose roles have included Last Tango In Halifax and The History Boys - and John Castle, famed for his performance in classic series I, Claudius.
Gatiss, who has also scripted the film, said: "The wonderful adaptations of MR James's tales that I saw on TV as a child have been a lasting inspiration to me.
"I'm delighted to restore the tradition of a BBC Ghost Story for Christmas and bring to life a personal favourite - The Tractate Middoth - one of James's most atmospheric, thrilling, and downright scary tales."
In the tale, terrifying spirits are brought to an academic library as a result of two men going through an ancient Hebrew text.
Mark Bell, the BBC's commissioning editor for arts, said: "In his ghost stories, MR James displays a beguiling mixture of dry wit, singular erudition and a joyful enthusiasm for the macabre.
"Mark Gatiss shares the same attributes and it is tremendously exciting to be working on both a new drama and a documentary investigation of what made this great British eccentric tick."
Gatiss will also host a documentary about the Victorian author which will also be screened during the festive season, with the working title MR James: Ghost Writer.
film Sex scene trailer sees a shirtless Jamie Dornan turn up the heat
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Three-year-old boy shoots pregnant mother and father in New Mexico
- 2 Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
- 3 Jewish community urged to boycott Cornwall village after residents vote for 'Hitlers Walk' sign to be reinstated
- 4 Gorillaz Phase 4: Cartoon supergroup is back as new artwork is unveiled
- 5 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Gorillaz Phase 4: Cartoon supergroup is back as new artwork is unveiled
Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
As Better Call Saul launches, here are the other spin-off shows we need to see
Game of Thrones season 5 trailer: The first full-length look is here
Sia apologises for 'Elastic Heart' music video that sees Shia LaBeouf wrestle 12-year-old Maddie Ziegler
Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse
President Putin is a dangerous psychopath - reason is not going to work with him
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia