Matt Smith to Lead Adaptation of Nick Cave's 'The Death of Bunny Munro'

Matt Smith as Daemon Targaryen in "House of the Dragon"

Matt Smith as Daemon Targaryen in "House of the Dragon"

(Photo: HBO)

Matt Smith is set to star in The Death of Bunny Munro, a six-part series from Sky Studios based on Nick Cave's sophomore novel of the same name. (Yes, it's the same Nick Cave who is the lead singer of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds and performed the Peaky Blinders' infamous "Red Right Hand" opening credits song.) Smith is, of course, known for his roles as the Eleventh Doctor on Doctor Who, the inaugural incarnation of Prince Phillip on The Crown, and, most recently, as Prince Daemon Targaryen on Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon

The dark comedy follows the story of the titular Bunny Munro, a middle-aged alcoholic, sex addict, and door-to-door beauty product salesman who finds himself forced to care for his young son after his wife's suicide. The pair embark on a wild road trip across south England as they each struggle to process their grief in very different ways. Self-professed lothario Bunny keeps busy attempting to seduce any woman who crosses his path, while Bunny Junior conducts conversations with the ghost of his dead mother and grapples with the realization that his father is actually a complete mess. 

Described as a "darkly comic and unflinching modern-day parable" and a "tender portrait of the relationship between father and son," the story features an array of memorable, occasionally sleazy supporting characters and also a whole thing about a serial killer stalking Brighton while wearing a Devil costume, which will all make a bit more sense when you realize that the producers behind this show were also the folks that brought us The End of the F***ing World. What I'm saying is that absolutely none of this weirdness handled in the way you expect. (In the best ways, of course.)

The six-part series is written by BAFTA winner Pete Jackson (Somewhere Boy) and directed by Isabella Eklöf (Industry). Adapted from Cave's sophomore novel, it is produced by Clerkenwell Films, who are wholly owned by BBC Studios, in association with Sky Studios. Smith, Cave, Jackson and Eklöf all serve as Executive Producers, alongside Manpreet Dosanjh for Sky Studios, and Petra Fried, Ed Macdonald, and Emily Harrison for Clerkenwell Films. 

“Finally, someone with the courage to take on this unholy tale," Cave said. "I am thrilled that Sky and Clerkenwell Films are bringing Bunny to life, in all his flawed glory, and I can think of nobody better than Matt Smith to play him."

Additional casting will be announced at a later date, but the search for an actor to play the young Bunny Junior is already underway, with the hope of uncovering an exciting new talent. 

To work alongside Nick Cave on The Death of Bunny Munro feels like a great honor," Smith said in a statement. "It’s a brilliant exploration of love, grief, and chaos. At its heart a deep, difficult, and tender story about a father and son, coping with loss and change. Clerkenwell Films and Sky feels like the perfect home to make such a bold story and Pete has delivered such wonderful scripts, both funny and heartbreaking in equal measure."

The series will begin filming in Spring 2024 across the south of England and will be available on Sky Atlantic and streaming service Sky Now in the U.K. NBCUniversal Global Distribution will handle international sales of the series on behalf of Sky Studios. 

Lacy Baugher

Lacy's love of British TV is embarrassingly extensive, but primarily centers around evangelizing all things Doctor Who, and watching as many period dramas as possible.

Digital media type by day, she also has a fairly useless degree in British medieval literature, and dearly loves to talk about dream poetry, liminality, and the medieval religious vision. (Sadly, that opportunity presents itself very infrequently.) York apologist, Ninth Doctor enthusiast, and unabashed Ravenclaw. Say hi on Threads or Blue Sky at @LacyMB. 

More to Love from Telly Visions