Stephen: Everything to know about ITV’s new drama series about the murder of Stephen Lawrence

Three-part drama is a sequel to the acclaimed 1999 fact-based film

Louis Chilton
Thursday 26 August 2021 13:23
Trailer for ITV's new drama 'Stephen', starring Steve Coogan and Sharlene Whyte

More than two decades after the release of Paul Greengrass’s acclaimed 1999 film The Murder of Stephen Lawrence, ITV is releasing a follow-up.

Stephen debuts next Monday, and focuses on the legacy of the murder of Black teenager Stephen Lawrence in 1993.

Lawrence, an aspiring architect, was killed by a group of white men in a racially motivated attack near a south-east London bus stop.

The original film dramatised Lawrence’s murder, the fruitless police investigation that followed, and a subsequent cover-up. It was produced with the blessing and collaboration of Lawrence’s family.

You can read about the original film, and the case it was based upon, here.

Here’s a breakdown of everything you need to know about the forthcoming series…

When is it on TV?

Stephen is set to debut on ITV at 9pm on Monday 30 August. The series comprises three episodes in total.

The original film, The Murder of Stephen Lawrence, can be streamed on BritBox.

What is it about?

According to the official synopsis, Stephen “portrays events from 2006, thirteen years after Stephen Lawrence’s death on the evening of 22 April 1993 in a racially motivated attack whilst waiting for a bus in Well Hall Road, Eltham.

“Even though Doreen and Neville Lawrence knew the identity of their son’s killers, the original investigation had failed to convict those responsible, and their extraordinary campaign for justice led to a public inquiry which branded Metropolitan Police institutionally racist and brought about sweeping changes in the law and police practices and transformed thinking and understanding of racial inequality in the UK.”

Jorden Myrie, Sharlene Whyte and Hugh Quarshie as Stuart, Doreen and Neville Lawrence

Set six years after the inquiry concluded, Stephen follows the Lawrence family’s struggle for justice, and tracks police detective DCI Clive Driscoll’s investigation that eventually secured convictions for two of the gang who committed the murder.

Who is in the cast?

Steve Coogan is the most well-known of the cast; the I’m Alan Partridge and The Trip star plays DCI Driscoll.

The role of Doreen Lawrence, Stephen’s mother, is played by Sharlene White (Small Axe), having been portrayed in the original film by Marianne Jean-Baptiste.

Breeders star Hugh Quarshie, meanwhile, reprises the role of Neville Lawrence, Stephen’s father.

Richie Campbell, Jordan Myrie, Sian Brooke and Adil Ray also feature in the series.

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