The glass house cast

GLASS Houses is a brand new drama which is set to show just how much damage a bit of gossip can cause.

With a stellar cast and script, we take a look at what you can expect from the show.

3 Credit: ITV

When does Glass Houses start on ITV?

Glass House is not set to hit TV screens until 2020.

But the show has started filming in South Devon and will have six, hour-long episodes.

Genial Production’s Managing Director and Executive Producer Sophie Clarke-Jervoise said: “We’re delighted to be making Glass Houses for ITV – it’s a cautionary tale for anyone wanting to gain popularity by passing on unfounded gossip and Mark Brotherhood’s scripts are packed full of intrigue, comedy and suspense.”

Dawn French said: “Sophie and I have been developing Glass Houses for some time and I can’t wait to finally get started in front of the camera. It’s such a good story with a fantastic funny, touching script by Mark Brotherhood.”

3 The show follows village gossip Maggie Connors, played by Dawn FrenchCredit: Rex Features

What is the Glass Houses about?

Glass Houses is set in a picturesque small coastal town with a close-knit community.

It follows the stories and fall out for village gossip Maggie Connors (played by Dawn French) who likes to ignore the cautionary adage that ‘those in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones’.

Maggie is a central figure in the town, who makes it her business to know a bit about everyone’s lives.

She gives a very revealing interview to a local radio interviewer that sets in train a series of dark happenings in the fictional town of Thurlbury.

ITV’s Comedy Controller Saskia Schuster said: “Glass Houses is a new drama in the tradition of Doc Martin and The Darling Buds Of May, full of warmth and intriguing characters.

“This new series will embrace its beautiful idyllic South Devon setting as we meet the villagers of Thurlbury and find out how an innocent afternoon spent indiscreetly gossiping has a domino effect on the whole village.”

3 Dawn said: ‘It’s such a good story with a fantastic funny, touching script.’Credit: Getty – Contributor

Who’s in the Glass Houses cast?

The new series will star Dawn French as the main character Maggie Connors.

Friday Night Dinner star Mark Heap has been cast to play her headmaster husband Peter.

Maggie’s best friend is being played by Coronation Street legend Julie Hesmondhalgh.

Getting On’s Vicki Pepperdine and The Bill’s Patrick Robinson are also part of the cast, with more to be announced.

What is Glass Houses on ITV about?

Glass Houses follows the community of the fictional of Thurlbury who are thrown into an unprecedented drama caused by nosy local resident Maggie Connors (played by Dawn French).

Maggie is a huge gossip and after speaking to a local radio journalist, she reveals too much about the local community and those close to her.

The synopsis reads: “Glass Houses is set in a picturesque small coastal town with a close-knit community.

“It follows the stories and fall out for Maggie Connors, who doesn’t pay attention to the cautionary adage that ‘those in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones’.

Glass Houses will follow the aftermath of Maggie’s revelations.

Saskia Schuster, ITV’s Comedy Controller said: “Glass Houses is a new drama in the tradition of Doc Martin and The Darling Buds Of May, full of warmth and intriguing characters.

“This new series will embrace its beautiful idyllic South Devon setting as we meet the villagers of Thurlbury and find out how an innocent afternoon spent indiscreetly gossiping has a domino effect on the whole village.“

Glass Houses is set in a picturesque small coastal town with a close-knit community. It follows the stories and fall out for Maggie Connors, who doesn’t pay attention to the cautionary adage that “those in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones”.

Maggie is a central figure in the town, who makes it her business to know a bit about everyone’s lives. When a radio journalist interviews her for a small reportage piece about local life she gives him far more detail (and embellishment) about the locals and their personal lives than he was counting on. In the days and weeks following the show’s broadcast, Maggie sees the butterfly effect of how her very public gossip-fest affects various figures around the town and disrupts their lives.

Maggie has been happily married to headmaster Peter for nearly 40 years, and their son Jamie and his wife Becka live nearby. Other notable residents include Maggie’s best friend Jill; Brian the publican; school secretary Karen; the town’s GP Carol; local shopkeepers Emil and Roxanna; and Kelly who works in the hair salon. Also part-time-resident is the handsome Marcus, who rents a cottage to write his best-selling novels.

ITV commissions six part drama series Glass Houses with Dawn French

ITV commissions six part drama series Glass Houses with Dawn French

ITV today announces the commission of brand new drama series Glass Houses from Genial Productions. The new 6 x 60” series will go into production on location in South Devon in Spring 2019.

The new series will star Dawn French, Mark Heap, Julie Hesmondhalgh, Vicki Pepperdine and Patrick Robinson, with more casting to be announced nearer transmission.

Glass Houses is created and written by Mark Brotherhood and is set in a picturesque small coastal town with a close-knit community. It follows the stories and fall out for Maggie Connors (played by Dawn French) who doesn’t pay attention to the cautionary adage that ‘those in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones’.

Maggie is a central character in town who makes it her business to know a bit about everyone’s lives. When a radio journalist interviews her for a small reportage piece about local life she gives him far more detail (and embellishment) about the locals and their personal lives than he was counting on. In the days and weeks following the show’s broadcast, Maggie sees the butterfly effect of how her very public gossip-fest affects various figures around the town and disrupts their lives.

Maggie has been happily married to headmaster Peter (played by Mark Heap) for nearly 40 years, and their son Jamie and his wife Becka live nearby. Other notable residents include Maggie’s best friend Jill (played by Julie Hesmondhalgh), Brian the publican, school secretary Karen (played by Vicki Pepperdine), the town’s GP Carol, local shopkeepers Emil and Roxanna, and Kelly who works in the hair salon. Also part-time resident is the handsome Marcus (played by Patrick Robinson), who rents a cottage to write his best-selling novels.

The series has been commissioned by ITV’s Comedy Controller Saskia Schuster. Glass Houses is produced by Genial Productions, which has a minority investment from ITV Studios. Sophie Clarke-Jervoise from Genial Productions along with Dawn French and Mark Brotherhood will serve as executive producers with Joanna Hanley as producer, Ben Gregor as director and Maya Sondhi as script consultant.

Saskia Schuster, ITV’s Comedy Controller said

“Glass Houses is a new drama in the tradition of Doc Martin and The Darling Buds Of May, full of warmth and intriguing characters. This new series will embrace its beautiful idyllic South Devon setting as we meet the villagers of Thurlbury and find out how an innocent afternoon spent indiscreetly gossiping has a domino effect on the whole village.“

Sophie Clarke-Jervoise, Genial Production’s Managing Director and Executive Producer said

“We’re delighted to be making Glass Houses for ITV – it’s a cautionary tale for anyone wanting to gain popularity by passing on unfounded gossip and Mark Brotherhood’s scripts are packed full of intrigue, comedy and suspense.”

Dawn French said

“Sophie and I have been developing Glass Houses for some time and I can’t wait to finally get started in front of the camera. It’s such a good story with a fantastic funny, touching script by Mark Brotherhood. Let me at it!”

Glass Houses will be distributed internationally by ITV Studios Global Entertainment.

The Glass House

‘The Glass House” brings skilled technique to a plot that’s a foregone conclusion. Since it’s clear from early in the film what must have happened and why, it’s a film about waiting for the characters to catch up to us. The movie’s trailer doesn’t help, with its comprehensive betrayal of the movie’s key secrets. It should even be a secret that this is a thriller–we should walk in thinking it’s about kids surviving the loss of their parents. No chance of that.

The film opens with one of those irrelevant shock buttons that have become annoying in recent years–five or 10 minutes that have nothing to do with the rest of the story, but fool us with misleading footage. In this case, there’s a horror scene, and then we see it’s a film, and then we see the heroine and her friends watching it–and, yes, they’re cute as they giggle at their own reactions, but openings like this are empty stylistic exercises. Once was a time when the well-made film used its opening scenes to dig in, not just spin its wheels.

The movie was directed by the TV veteran Daniel Sackheim, who worked on “ER,” “The X-Files,” “Law & Order,” and other series that are smarter than this. It stars Leelee Sobieski, one of the best young actresses, as Ruby Baker, who with her little brother, Rhett (Trevor Morgan), is orphaned when their parents die in a car crash. The family lawyer (Bruce Dern) explains that the parents had arranged for their close friends Erin and Terry Glass to be their guardians in the case of tragedy, and soon the kids are moving into the Glasses’ big glass house (uh huh), which is luxurious, although Ruby and Rhett are a little too old to be sharing the same bedroom. It’s a detail like that we find annoying. Why would the Glasses, who have acres of living space on their Malibu hilltop, put the kids into one room? Given the Glasses’ long-term plans, why not make the kids as happy as possible? There’s a kind of thriller in which the events unfold as they might in real life, and we have to decide which way to take them–and another kind of thriller, this kind, where the events unfold as a series of ominous portents, real and false alarms, and music stingers on the soundtrack. The first kind of thriller is a film, the second is a technical exercise.

What makes “The Glass House” sad is that resources have been wasted. Diane Lane and Stellan Skarsgard, as the Glasses, are so good in the dialed-down “realistic scenes” that we cringe when they have to go over the top and make everything so very absolutely clear for the slow learners in the audience. Sobieski is fine, too–as good an upscale Los Angeles high school student as Kirsten Dunst in the recent “Crazy/Beautiful,” but in a genre exercise that strands her instead of going someplace interesting and taking her along.

It’s good to see Bruce Dern again. He’s one of those actors, like Christopher Walken, who you assume on first glance has a secret evil agenda. Here he’s the family lawyer who the kids can or can’t trust, and is wise enough to play the character absolutely straight, with no tics or twitches, so that he keeps us wondering–or would, if Wesley Strick’s screenplay wasn’t one of those infuriating constructions where the key outside characters turn up at the wrong times, believe the wrong people and misinterpret everything.

Speaking of turning up, Sobieski’s character turns up at too many right times. How fortunate that she drops in on Mr. Glass’s office just at the right moment to eavesdrop, unobserved, on crucial dialogue. And how unfortunate that she seems to be proving the Glasses right and herself wrong when a social worker walks in on a crucial moment and, of course, misinterprets it.

If you want to see a great movie about a couple of kids endangered by a sinister guardian, rent “The Night of the Hunter.” Watching “The Glass House” has all the elements for a better film, but doesn’t trust the audience to keep up with them. Having criticized the Strick screenplay, I should in fairness observe that the way it usually works is, the writer puts in the smart stuff and then it comes out in the story conferences with executives who figure if they don’t understand it, nobody will.