EXCLUSIVE: The BBC has halted work on an adaptation of Alex Wheatle’s book Crongton Knights after producer Noel Clarke was accused of sexual misconduct.
Deadline understands that Clarke’s Unstoppable Film & Television had the rights to the youth novel and was developing the project with the BBC.
The British broadcaster has now paused the adaptation after The Guardian published claims from more than 20 women about Clarke’s alleged inappropriate behavior. Clarke vehemently denies wrongdoing.
A BBC spokeswoman told Deadline: “We are not progressing any projects with Noel Clarke at this time.”
Crongton Knights centers on McKay, who has experienced the hardship of his mother’s death and his father working all hours to keep the bailiffs from the door.
Having strayed off his turf on a mission to help out a girl, McKay finds himself facing a friend’s crazy ex-boyfriend, a group of kids on a power trip, and a violent gangster with a vendetta close to home.
The book gave rise to a Crongton series, written by Wheatle, who was a subject of Steve McQueen’s BAFTA-winning Small Axe series after transforming his life following the 1981 Brixton riots.
The BBC is not alone in halting work with Clarke. Sky has done the same, canceling the fourth season of the hit drama series Bulletproof.
Unstoppable Film & Television continues to be investigated by All3Media, which owns a 21% stake in the company. All3Media suspended Clarke and business partner Jason Maza in April pending the outcome of the probe.