Top Boy creator Ronan Bennett is in talks with Netflix over a potential spin-off.
Speaking to the BBC’s Nihal Arthanayake in the past hour, Bennett said the spin-off would focus on the character of Jaq Lawrence, who is played by Jasmine Jobson.
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He said he is in conversation with Netflix and production company Cowboy, and that EP Drake is on board.
“We are talking to Netflix about a spin-off, which will be around Jaq,” he said.
Bennett joked that Netflix will “probably be angry with me for mentioning it” and said “I’ve learned through bitter experience not to talk too much about shows that are in the future.”
“You just never know if they’re going to get made,” he added. “And in fact, most shows that are developed actually don’t get made. You can write the script and, for whatever reason, they don’t get made. So you end up looking like a bit of a fool for mentioning it. But I have hopes that this will work.”
Other conversations between the creative team have taken place over whether to pen a prequel, Top Boy movie or stage musical, he added, although these are in their very early stages.
“I think that the world of Top Boy, the world that we jointly created, is so rich, it’s so deep, and it has that fanatical following that it’s something that still has life in it,” added Bennett. “Some shows reach their end, and you kind of go, ‘Thank god they’ve ended, I love that show, but they’ve run out of steam’. But I do feel that there’s more juice to squeeze from Top Boy.”
Top Boy is one of Netflix’s most successful British shows of all time and Jaq’s critically-acclaimed character is central to that. Starring Ashley Walters, Kano and a young ensemble cast, Netflix resuscitated the show with Drake’s help after it was canceled by Channel 4 after two seasons, and three more aired on the streamer between 2019 and last year, attracting acclaim and strong ratings. Jaq plays a major role in Seasons 3, 4 and 5.
Jobson was BAFTA nominated for her role in Ben Whishaw-starrer Surge and played major parts in the BBC’s Noughts + Crosses and ITV’s Platform 7.
Bennett is writing Sky and Peacock’s big-budget Day of the Jackal adaptation starring Eddie Redmayne and Lashana Lynch.
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