Rafe Spall (Life of Pi, The Shadow Line, Prometheus) has been cast as Harry Price in ITV’s brand new film 'Harry Price: Ghost Hunter' written by Jack Lothian (Doc Martin, Death in Paradise, Ashes to Ashes) and produced by leading independent production company Bentley Productions. Joining Rafe will be Cara Theobald (Downton Abbey, The Syndicate, Last Tango In Halifax) who will play Sarah Grey, one of Harry’s team in his paranormal investigations; Richie Campbell (DCI Banks, The Frankenstein Chronicles) will play Albert Ogoro, Harry’s friend; and Lewis Reeves (Unforgotten, Uncle) will play journalist, Vernon Wall. Further casting includes Tom Ward (The Frankenstein Chronicles, Death in Paradise) as MP Edward Goodwin and Zoe Boyle ( Downton Abbey, Sons of Anarchy) as Edward’s wife, Grace.
The film is a spine chilling mix of real history and fiction and is based on the novel The Ghost Hunters by Neil Spring. Set in 1920s London at a time of rapidly emerging technology, the 1 x 120’ film is a stand-alone story about Britain’s most famous real life ghost hunter and sceptic, Harry Price, who investigated tales of the paranormal and supernatural.
An expert at sleight of hand and with a keen eye for identifying charlatans and tricksters, our story begins as Harry has fallen on hard times in recent years, professionally and ethically losing his way. He’s resorted to making his living as a fake medium and fraudulent ghost hunter, conducting séances for unsuspecting families who think their lives have been made a misery by ghostly mischief making.
Harry’s duplicitous lifestyle has also had serious consequences when, after conducting a séance for a soldier looking for solace, the young man later takes his own life on the doorstep of Harry’s home.
A couple of months later, Harry is offered the chance to investigate the haunting of a local MP’s home as the case threatens to ruin the politician’s reputation. With the prospects of leading his political party, Edward Goodwin can ill-afford the scandal as his wife Grace begins to hallucinate and act bizarrely, believing their family home to be haunted. There’s a possibility Grace may be committed to an asylum if Harry doesn’t take on the investigation. Ghosts from Harry’s past influence his decision to take the case and he begins to think it might be time to take a new path.
Together with the Goodwin family maid, Sarah Grey, whose own mother has fallen prey to con artist mediums in the past, their detection and investigative skills complement one another and they make a formidable partnership. Smart, driven and open-minded, Sarah is a strong-willed woman who can handle herself when unravelling the mysteries behind the hauntings, which are seriously affecting Grace’s health and well-being.
Harry also calls on the services of his old friend, Albert, during the investigation. An African pharmacist with a sideline in voodoo con-artistry, Albert has a keen interest in medical and scientific discoveries, which Harry exploits to the maximum.
Journalist Vernon Wall also finds himself in Harry’s orbit. Cynical and hard-bitten, although clever at winning the trust of the people he’s interviewing, Vernon is keen to learn about Harry’s techniques and sensing a political scandal sets out to inveigle his way into his life by extracting information from Sarah.
Rafe Spall said: “I’m delighted to be portraying Harry Price for ITV. It’s a fantastic piece of history that has mass appeal and I can’t wait to start filming”.
Harry Price: Ghost Hunter will be executive produced for Bentley Productions by Jo Wright (Midsomer Murders, The Sculptress, Othello), produced by Denise Paul (Doctor Who) and directed by Alex Pillai(Being Human, Da Vinci's Demons, Merlin).
“It’s a great thrill to be making Harry Price: Ghost Hunter for ITV,” said Executive Producer, Jo Wright. “Bentley Productions is developing a raft of new and exciting projects and this is one of my favourites. To be able to combine the book by Neil Spring with a script by Jack Lothian has been a delight, and we look forward to making this for our ITV audience.”
The film has been commissioned for ITV by Director of Drama Steve November and Controller of Commissioning Victoria Fea.
Filming will be commencing in London from the end of August and throughout September 2015.