THE THIEF, HIS WIFE AND THE CANOE: NEW DRAMA COMING TO ITV IN 2022

The extraordinary and compelling story of how John Darwin faked his own death to claim life insurance and avoid bankruptcy will be told in a new ITV drama, The Thief, His Wife and the Canoe written by acclaimed screenwriter Chris Lang.


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The Mirror reports that filming for the four-part ITV drama has been moved from the Dominican Republic in North America to Lisbon due to Covid restrictions.



The four part drama, relates how Anne Darwin’s husband, a prison officer, came up with the hare-brained scheme to defraud insurance companies, unbeknownst to their two sons. Renowned actors, Monica Dolan and Eddie Marsan, will play Anne and John Darwin.


The Thief, His Wife and the Canoe is based upon the unpublished manuscript written by journalist David Leigh. David was the first journalist to find and interview Anne in Panama.



The drama will focus on how Anne Darwin became complicit in her husband’s deception as she needed to convince the world, their family and friends, the police and insurance companies that he had gone missing in 2002 whilst canoeing off the coast of Seaton Carew in Cleveland where the couple owned two large houses with panoramic views of the sea.


ITV's Polly Hill said: “This is an extraordinary story of deception within a very ordinary family. Chris has written brilliant scripts about the heart breaking cost of this elaborate lie. I am so pleased to be working with Richard Laxton again and with Dave Nath and Story Films first drama for ITV.”