Steve Coogan transforms into paedophile Jimmy Savile in first look at BBC series

The first pictures of Steve Coogan playing paedophile Jimmy Savile in a new BBC drama have been revealed as the actor donned a jester outfit on set in Bolton, Manchester, on Monday.

The comedian, 55, filmed scenes in fancy dress while wearing a wig to mimic Savile's trademark blond hair.

The Reckoning will detail the late presenter’s upbringing, early career and prolific child sex offences.

The snaps appeared to show Coogan shooting hospital scenes and standing next to an extra dressed in nursing gear from the Sixties – when child abuse allegations against Savile began.

Coogan, best known for playing comedy icon Alan Partridge, recently revealed his decision to play the prolific paedophile took time to consider, but said the story “needs to be told”.

"To play Jimmy Savile was not a decision I took lightly,” said Coogan.

"Neil McKay has written an intelligent script tackling sensitively a horrific story which, however harrowing, needs to be told."

The mini-series will detail the life of Jimmy Savile, a man who rose from a working-class background to become a beloved British TV star, only to be reviled in death following revelations of extensive and horrific abuse.

The story will trace Savile through his early years in the dance halls of northern England, his career with the BBC, to his twilight years when rumours about his secret life began to surface.

A BBC-led inquiry into his actions found he had molested at least 72 children, some as young as eight, over a four-decade campaign of sexual abuse with his first victim in 1959 and his last in 2006.

The decision to chronicle Savile's life has faced major backlash form the public, however the BBC has stated that they worked with his victims and will portray the stories 'with sensitivity and respect'

BBC Drama Controller Piers Wenger, said: “The story of Jimmy Savile is one of the most emotive and troubling of our times. We do not intend to sensationalise these crimes but to give voice to his victims.

“We will work with survivors to ensure their stories are told with sensitivity and respect and to examine the institutions which Jimmy Savile was associated with and the circumstances in which these crimes took place.”

A release date has yet to be announced with filming for the series expected to continue taking place in Manchester over the coming months.

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