See Benedict Cumberbatch as a giant puppet in ‘Eric’
(Credit: BBC)

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See Benedict Cumberbatch as a giant puppet in 'Eric'

Ever the chameleon, Benedict Cumberbatch, is having a busy 2023. In addition to Wes Anderson’s The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar, Jeymes Samuel’s The Book of Clarence, and Mahalia Belo’s The End We Start From—which are all in post-production currently—The Power of the Dog actor is all set for new Netflix series Eric. No stranger to on-screen transformations, the British actor was spotted in a massive puppet suit on set, embodying a harried father who has lost his son.

Eric is a period drama set in New York in the 1980s. It follows the story of Vincent Anderson, a prominent puppeteer and creator of the popular in-show children’s TV series Good Day Sunshine. After his nine-year-old son Edgar goes missing, a distressed and guilty Vincent becomes increasingly convinced that clues in Edgar’s drawings of a blue monster puppet named Eric is what will help him find his son. Vincent starts believing that getting Eric on TV will help him reunite with Edgar. 

The giant puppet, a ‘delusion of necessity’, soon becomes Vincent’s only ally in his pursuit to bring Edgar home. Vincent’s obsession and substance abuse leads to violent behaviour, which only ends up isolating him further from his friends, family, and colleagues.

As per Netflix’s official announcement, creator and writer Abi Morgan described the show as a twisted tale. She said, “Eric is a dark and crazy journey into the heart of 1980’s New York, and the good, bad and ugly world of Vincent, a genius puppeteer on one of America’s leading kids TV shows. The chance to work with Benedict and the creative team at Sister and Netflix, is irresistible. With Lucy Forbes at the directorial helm, I feel fortunate to be working at a time of such great creativity in our industry. Fingers crossed Eric will be a welcome addition.”

Apart from Cumberbatch, the six-episode limited series will also feature Transparent’s Gaby Hoffman as Cassie Anderson, Brideshead Revisited’s Phoebe Nicholls as Anne Anderson, Ivan Morris Howe as Edgar in his debut role, Ozark’s McKinley Belcher III as Detective Michael Ledroit, The Walking Dead’s Dan Fogler as Lennie Wilson, The Wire’s Clarke Peters as George Lovett, The Office’s David Denman as Matteo Cripp, among others.

BAFTA-winning director Lucy Forbes (The End of The F***ing World, In My Skin, This is Going to Hurt) will be helming the series based on the script written by Abi Morgan (Brick Lane, The Iron Lady, Suffragette). Holly Pullinger (This is Going to Hurt, Don’t Forget the Driver) will be producing the series for SISTER (Chernobyl, This Is Going To Hurt, Landscapers), and it will be co-produced by Little Chick (The Split). 

Benedict Cumberbatch, who is also executive producing Andrew Garfield and Florence Pugh’s We Live in Time, will also serve as an executive producer on Eric.