Stephen S. Thompson Dies: Writer Of Left Bank Pictures’ Bafta-Winning BBC1 Drama ‘Sitting In Limbo’ Was 56

Stephen S. Thompson, whose debut single drama BBC1 Sitting in Limbo won a Bafta in 2020, has died aged 56.

His family released a statement through his agent, Cassarotto Ramsay & Associates, announcing he had passed on May 26 after a short battle against cancer.

“He fought hard to beat the odds after being diagnosed just a month earlier and spent the last few weeks at home receiving end of life care.

“Stephen showed a characteristic determination to live but in the end the rapid progression of the cancer meant his body was unable to match the power of his indomitable mind. He passed away peacefully surrounded by love.”

Thompson, a novelist and screenwriter of Jamaican descent, came to attention in TV circles through Sitting in Limbo, which came from The Crown producer Left Bank Pictures. His powerful script was based on his brother Anthony Bryan’s fight against deportation from the UK as part of Britain’s Windrush scandal, during which the Conservative government attempted to deport many British subjects with Caribbean roots, often without cause or justification.

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The feature-length program won the Best Single Drama TV Bafta in 2020. “We are so sorry to hear of the passing of Stephen S Thompson — a brilliant of screenwriter who won a TV Bafta for single drama Sitting in Limbo and was nominated for Emerging Talent: Fiction in 2021,” said Bafta in a statement. “Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this difficult time.”

Bafta Chair Krishnendu Majumdar, who was close to Thompson, tweeted: “Absolutely devastated to hear about the loss of a blazing talent, a dear friend and colleague — gone far too soon.”

Thompson’s first novel, Toy Soldiers, was an acclaimed semi-autobiographical account of adolescence publishing in 2000. His latest book, No More Heroes, came out in 2015 and was about the 7/7 London terrorist bombings. It was in development at the BBC, with Left Bank attached, according to Cassarotto Ramsay & Associates.

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