This is Going to Hurt: Ben Whishaw to star in BBC’s new medical drama
BBC Two and AMC are in the process of developing a series adaptation of British comedian Adam Kay’s bestselling memoir titled This is Going to Hurt with Golden Globe winner Ben Whishaw attached for the leading role. This marks Whishaw’s first major TV project as the main star after appearing in 2018’s critically-acclaimed miniseries A Very English Scandal which earned him Best Supporting Actor awards in the Golden Globes, Emmys and BAFTA.
“I am proud to join this exciting adaptation of Adam Kay’s terrific book This is Going to Hurt based on his experiences working in the NHS.” Whishaw said in a statement (via The Futon Critic) “It’s an honest, hilarious, heart-breaking look at the great institution and the army of unsung heroes who work there under the most stressful conditions. The Covid-19 crisis has now shed even more light on their great work and underlines the necessity to support the NHS and its workers. I look forward to telling this story with director Lucy Forbes and the great team at SISTER to bring Adam’s words to life and I am really grateful to be a part of it.”
First published in 2017, This is Going to Hurt: Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor is a collection of diary entries written by Adam Kay during his previous time in the medical field before becoming as a comedian. Kay’s diaries, scribbled in secret after endless days, sleepless nights and missed weekends, tell the unvarnished truth of life as a doctor working in Obstetrics and Gynecology. Whishaw is set to play the fictional version of Adam, who we find wending his way through the ranks of hospital hierarchy – junior enough to suffer the crippling hours, but senior enough to face a constant barrage of terrifying responsibilities. The series sees Adam clinging to his personal life as he is increasingly overwhelmed by stresses at work: the 97-hour weeks, the life and death decisions, and all the while knowing the hospital parking meter is earning more than him.
This is Going to Hurt is a show about trying to be a good doctor in a system which can sometimes feel like it’s working against you. Like the book, the series will depict life on and off the hospital ward with frank and often shocking honesty. The series rejoices in the highs, while pulling no punches in its depiction of the gut-wrenching lows, and celebrates the everyday superstars of the health service who keep our hospitals running.
Blisteringly funny, politically enraging and frequently heart-breaking, Kay’s adaptation continues to be a stark reminder of the vital role played by the health service and is a clarion call to continue to support our medics, at a time when that message is more urgent than ever.
The series adaptation will written and executive produced by Adam Kay. Naomi de Pear and Jane Featherstone of SISTER are also executive producing along with Terrible Productions’James Farrell, BBC Two’s Mona Qureshi and AMC’s Kristin Jones and Dan McDermott. Lucy Forbes has also signed as the series’ lead director and is also producing with Holly Pullinger.
Whishaw has also appeared in a number of high-scale films such as Skyfall, Cloud Atlas, and Mary Poppins Returns as well as acclaimed films including The Lobster and The Danish Girl. He will next be seen in the fourth season of FX’s crime-anthology series Fargo and in Daniel Craig’s fifth and final Bond movie No Time to Die, which are both set to premiere later this year.