One of Old Hollywood’s leading men is headed back to the big screen, but this time he’s the subject, not the star. ITV and BritBox International Drama are working on a new Cary Grant biopic Archie with Jason Isaacs playing Grant himself, according to an exclusive from Deadline.
Following one of the best-known Hollywood leading men, Archie will look at the Academy Award-nominated actor in-depth. Starting with his birth in Bristol in 1904, the biopic will follow Archibald Alexander Leach, later known as Cary Grant, through a childhood of extreme poverty and family struggles due to his father’s adultery and the loss of his older brother John. All of which led him to move to the U.S. with music hall act the Bob Pender Troupe at age 14, which would eventually lead to him becoming Cary Grant.
As an actor, Grant saw many successes. With a reputation for his unique accent, sense of comedic timing, handsome looks, and debonair demeanor, he put his name to over 70 films in his decades-long career. He even worked with some of the biggest stars, from Sophia Loren to Grace Kelly and Doris Day. Cary Grant was a household name.
Archie will follow Grant through his film career and also through his often less than happy life off-screen. With two failed marriages by 1961, Grant was at the height of his fame and yet wildly unhappy — something viewers will see for themselves. However, he did remarry again, this time to a TV star 30 years his junior in 1965, before retiring from acting altogether in 1966.
Jason Isaacs may be best known for his role as Lucius Malfoy in the Harry Potter franchise, but you can also catch him in the latest season of Netflix’s Sex Education and in the Anthony Fabian feature Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris. He also recently starred in the short-lived CBS medical drama Good Sam, opposite Sophia Bush Hughes.
Written and executive produced by Philomena and Stan & Ollie writer Jeff Pope, the four-part special will be a flagship premiere on the upcoming ITVX streamer. Grant’s daughter and former wife have both given Pope’s script their blessing, and fans of Cary Grant can look forward to seeing how Archie Leach became the iconic Cary Grant.