BBC2 orders Curious Films & Hannah Fry cancer documentary

Hannah Fry

BBC 2 in the UK has ordered a one-off film following mathematician, author, and radio and television presenter professor Hannah Fry as she documents her treatment for cancer.

Making Sense Of Cancer With Hannah Fry is being produced by UK-based Curious Films and investigates whether current medical thinking about how to tackle the disease needs reassessing.

Having missed a smear test during the Covid-19 pandemic, Fry was diagnosed with stage three cervical cancer and told that she needed radical surgery to save her life. As a way of coping, she decided to document her experience from the run-up to surgery and throughout her recovery.

The 1 x 60-minute doc is directed by Harriet Bird and executive produced by Dov Freedman and Charlie Russell for Curious Films. It was commissioned for BBC Two and iPlayer by Jack Bootle, head of commissioning, science and natural history.

Fry said: “From the moment I was diagnosed, I’ve become obsessed with the data and statistics behind cancer, and it’s made me question all my assumptions about this disease. Through this documentary, I want to explore whether we – patients and specialists – are making the right choices in how we deal with cancer.

“Have we become so afraid of it, that we’ll do anything to fight it, no matter what the cost? And when we’re deciding whether to go ahead with terrible, life-changing treatments, how do we trade-off between the quantity of life, and its quality?”

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