Anthony Walker: TV drama imagines victim of racist murder’s future life

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Toheeb Jimoh as Anthony Walker

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Actor Toheeb Jimoh portrays Anthony Walker and the life he “might have led”

The life of Anthony Walker, who was murdered in a racist attack on Merseyside in 2005, is to be depicted in a BBC drama.

But writer Jimmy McGovern has not portrayed the life 18-year-old Walker lived up to the point he was killed.

The one-off film will imagine what might have happened had he not died.

Walker’s mother Gee approached McGovern with the idea to show “Anthony’s unfilled dreams, his potentials and the many lives he would have impacted on”.

Anthony Walker was killed after being racially abused while waiting at a bus stop in Huyton with his white girlfriend.

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Anthony Walker was chased into a park in Huyton, Merseyside, and killed in 2005

McGovern is an award-winning writer known for creating TV series including Cracker, and docudrama Hillsborough, about the 1989 football stadium tragedy.

Gee Walker said in a statement: “I went to Jimmy because I couldn’t think of anyone more suited who could depict, highlight and draw attention to the hard messages of a life not lived – Anthony’s unfilled dreams, his potentials and the many lives he would have impacted on – which now will never be realised.”

She and McGovern have known each other for a number of years, and he said he felt “a God-given duty to do it” after her request.

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Jimoh has previously appeared in Amazon’s The Feed

“We had to find a new way of telling the story,” he told The Guardian. “And that’s why I hit on this – to show the life that had been snatched away.

“The night of his death is the only factual stuff in that drama, but that is nailed-on factual. That’s word-for-word what happened.”

‘Wider story’

Cousins Michael Barton and Paul Taylor were jailed for Walker’s murder.

The feature-length film will be called Anthony, with the title role played by Toheeb Jimoh.

BBC drama controller Piers Wenger described it as “the story of a young man who tragically lost his life but also of a life he might have led”.

He said: “When commissioning drama linked to real life, we consider carefully the individual lives at the heart of the drama but also the wider societal story it might tell. Anthony is a case in point.”

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