The Child In Time Casts Kelly Macdonald As First Photo Unveils A Mournful Benedict Cumberbatch

Now that Sherlock has entered a state of stasis for the foreseeable future – indefinitely, perhaps? – Doctor Strange himself, Benedict Cumberbatch has reunited with the creative forces at the BBC and PBS’ Masterpiece for The Child in Time, a one-off 90-minute drama based on the somber novel by Ian McEwan.

Two months have passed since Cumberbatch agreed terms to headline the drama, and we now have confirmation of three new cast members: Black Mirror‘s Kelly Macdonald, Stephen Campbell Moore and Saskia Reeves. Filming is already underway in the English capital of London, with today’s official first-look photo unveiling a mournful Benedict Cumberbatch walking alone in the woods.

Set two years after the sudden disappearance of his daughter, Cumberbatch will executive produce and headline The Child in Time as Stephen Lewis, a “successful children’s book author whose daughter suddenly goes missing in the lyrical and heartbreaking exploration of love, loss and the power of things unseen.” Struggling to cope without his nearest and dearest, to make matters worse, his wife Julie (Macdonald) has left him, and his best friends Charles (Campbell Moore) and Thelma (Reeves) have made off to the countryside to battle demons of their own. Tackling harrowing, universal themes of love, loss, grief and that sliver of hope that pierces the darkness, The Child in Time offers up a lot of dramatic material for Macdonald, Campbell Moore and Reeves to sink their teeth into, but it is really Benedict Cumberbatch’s performance as the grieving father that will ultimately make or break the BBC drama.

Adapted by Stephen Butchard (The Last Kingdom) from Ian McEwan’s novel, The Child in Time will continue to lens over the coming months in anticipation of a release in early 2018.