Peter Kay, beloved stand-up comic and mind behind Phoenix Nights and Max & Paddy’s Road to Nowhere, is to star in a new BBC Two comedy based on Danny Baker’s autobiography, Going to Sea in a Sieve entitled Cradle to Grave.
Set in 1974, Cradle to Grave will follow the real-life events of Baker and his family across eight 30-minute episodes. Co-written by Jeff Pope and Baker, the series is due to be broadcast on BBC Two later this year.
Kay will play Danny’s father, south London docker Fred ‘Spud’ Baker, alongside Lucy Speed as his long-suffering wife Bet Baker. Laurie Kynaston will star as a young Danny and Alice Sykes and Frankie Wilson as Danny’s siblings, the soon-to-be-married Sharon and her brother Michael.
“I am thrilled and honoured to be involved in a project of this scale,” said Kay. “I’ve never known anything like it before – eight period half-hour episodes, shot as feature films and written to an extremely high standard by Danny Baker and Jeff Pope.”
“Well [it]is weird and there’s no way around that,” added Baker. “To see your life played out by actors is always going to be peculiar and also, frankly quite tremendous.”
“I always knew these stories were thunderingly entertaining incidents and that I seemed to be hurtling through a particularly unpredictable, high velocity life peopled by extraordinary characters. Now here they are.
“This will be a fantastic, rich voyage back to a boisterous often maligned era,” he explained.
“True tales told large – a strong family in a magnificent working class community just getting on with life.”