Is ITV’s No Return based on a true story?

15 February 2022, 08:34

Is No Return on ITV based on a true story and what is it about? Here's what we know...

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

Sheridan Smith is back on our screens with another new drama called No Return.

Airing on ITV, the series follows a family of four who go on an all-inclusive holiday to Turkey.

While Kathy (Sheridan Smith) and Martin (Michael Jibson) were hoping to relax on their luxurious trip, things take a turn when their son Noah (Louis Ashbourne Serkis) gets into some serious trouble.

When he is then arrested, the family find themselves fighting for Noah’s freedom in a foreign country.

No return is airing on ITV
No return is airing on ITV. Picture: ITV

But is No Return based on a true story? Here’s what we know about the drama…

Is ITV’s No Return based on a true story?

No Return is not a true story, but it is based on events which happened to the executive producer Danny Brocklehurst.

“Inevitably in any creative work some things are a little bit closer to your heart than others,” he said.

“This originated from a friend of mine who had been tangentially involved in something of a similar nature where a relative of theirs had been caught up in a foreign legal system.

“He told me about the details of this event on a walk we were on one day. I just listened to it as a story that had happened to somebody.

Here's what No Return is about
Here's what No Return is about. Picture: ITV

“The story obviously stayed with me and percolated because quite a long time later I suddenly thought, ‘I’ve got two sons, we go on package holidays from time to time, this strikes me as a really good idea for a drama.’

“That you could go on a holiday with your kids and an accusation could be levelled at your child and they could get caught up in a system you don’t understand and is incredibly difficult to get out of.

“I see those ordinary mums and dads every day when I do the school run and I often think to myself about how would something I’m writing resonate with these people who are ordinary, everyday people. I think more than a lot of my shows, No Return has that resonance.

“It will have that connection. Because it’s just such an ordinary situation. We all go on holiday, be it to Scotland, Spain or Turkey. And the idea of that holiday turning into a nightmare and being caught up in a system you don’t understand is very tangible in people’s minds.”

No Return is based on a family the executive producer knows
No Return is based on a family the executive producer knows. Picture: ITV

Opening up about the themes behind the series, Danny said he wanted to explore themes of parenthood, justice and consent.

“From the word go the conversation about consent was a big one,” he said.

“One of the things that Nicola Shindler, Polly Hill at ITV and I wanted to explore. How certainly from the time when we were in our teenage years how things have become more complicated in the modern world.

“Including that thorny issue of where the line is. It’s complicated and something we wanted to talk about in the drama. Albeit through this thriller that is about the court system and about family.

“But it’s not a drama about consent. It’s more about being caught up in a system and how it affects all those different members of the family. But it was certainly something we wanted to explore within what we hope is a gripping drama. I think the themes of No Return are ones that people will connect with.”