Inspired by Sir Lenny Henry’s mother’s journey to Britain in the late 1950s, THREE LITTLE BIRDS is a life affirming six-part drama series exploring untold stories of sisterhood, love, friendship, and the joys, laughter and struggles of making a new life in the so-called mother-country.
It follows, Leah Whittaker (Rochelle Neil – The Nevers, Guilt) who tussles with her conscience about what she has left behind in Jamaica. Running out on her abusive husband, Leah packs her three children off to live with her mother whilst she travels to Britain determined to make a new life for herself and to bring her children over once she has settled there.
Leah travels to England with her younger star stuck, glamourous sister Chantrelle (Saffron Coomber – Small Axe: Lovers Rock, Strike). The two chaperone their pious and Christian friend Hosanna (Yazmin Belo – What Just Happened) who they have chosen as a potential bride for their brother Aston (Javone Prince – Dodger).
Leah is a pioneer who wants to build a better future for her kids but every step of her journey is dogged by guilt, fear and fresh challenges in the hostile mother country. Spurred on by her determination to be reunited with her children, it is her journey of building a new home for all of them that’s truly transformative for Leah. In her new community in the West Midlands, Leah finds friendship, love, joy and the woman she was always destined to become.
Chantrelle dreams of stardom, and her job as a live in nanny to a respectable British family living close to the famous film studios in Borehamwood, is just the ticket to fame that she craves. As the scales fall from her eyes, Chantrelle discovers the devastating truth about this ‘respectable’ family and that the short-cut route to stardom is a million miles away from her reality.
Hosanna arrives in Britain full of high expectations for her potential husband but both of them are concealing secrets about their previous lives that threaten to derail any future they might have together.
As each of the three women start to find their feet they must navigate unexpected and sometimes shocking challenges. Will they hit rock bottom with a resounding thud, or will they finally fly?
Three Little Birds was filmed in The Midlands and has been commissioned for ITV by Head of Drama, Polly Hill, working alongside Nana Hughes who is overseeing production for ITV. The drama will premiere on ITV1 and be available for streaming on ITVX. Tiger Aspect Productions produces the six-part drama, written by Sir Lenny Henry and guest episode writers Carol Russell and Avril Russell, in association with his production company Douglas Road Productions. Both companies are part of the Banijay UK group. The series is co-produced by BritBox International, with Diederick Santer as Executive Producer. Banijay Rights handle international distribution.
Charles McDougall, Yero Timi-Biu and Darcia Martin will direct two episodes each and Sir Lenny Henry, Lucy Bedford, Kate Crowe, Russell T Davies, Charles McDougall and Angela Ferreira serve as Executive Producers with Stella Nwimo producing.