'Baby Reindeer' creator and star Richard Gadd wants everyone to stop speculating about the real people in his stalker drama: 'That's not the point'

'Baby Reindeer' creator and star Richard Gadd wants everyone to stop speculating about the real people in his stalker drama: 'That's not the point'
  • Richard Gadd based "Baby Reindeer" on his experience of being stalked and sexually abused.

  • Gadd plays a version of himself in the show and concealed the identities of his stalker and abuser.

  • People are trying to deduce who the real-life people are, and Gadd has asked them to stop.

Netflix's latest hit series, "Baby Reindeer," written by and starring Richard Gadd, is a lightly fictionalized true story based on Gadd's actual experience of being stalked and sexually abused.

In the limited series, which Gadd adapted from his one-man stage show of the same name, Gadd plays Donny Dunn, a fictionalized version of himself. Donny is stalked by an older woman named Martha Scott (played by Jessica Gunning), who is based on Gadd's real stalker.

The show also deals with Donny's grooming and sexual assault by an older male comedy writer he admired named Darrien (Tom Goodman-Hill), and the resulting difficulty he had coming to terms with his bisexuality after his abuse. This, too, is based on what happened to Gadd in real life.

For legal reasons, Gadd hasn't revealed the real identity of his stalker, or the writer Darrien was based on. But that hasn't stopped viewers from trying to figure it out and speculating about the characters' real identities on social media. Now, the writer and actor is addressing the fans who are trying to play detective and telling them to quit it.

"Hi everyone," Gadd wrote in an Instagram story on Monday. "People I love, have worked with, and admire (including Sean Foley) are unfairly getting caught up in speculation."

He continued: "Please don't speculate on who any of the real-life people could be. That's not the point of our show."

Richard Gadd's statement about Baby Reindeer on Instagram
Gadd made a statement on Instagram Monday.Richard Gadd/Instagram

Sean Foley, a British writer, director, comedian, and actor, also addressed the rampant speculation that he was Gadd's abuser in a post on X (formerly Twitter) shared hours after Gadd's message.

"Police have been informed and are investigating all defamatory abusive and threatening posts against me," Foley wrote.

In the show, Gadd took pains not to portray Martha as merely a villain, stressing both within the show and in interviews about it his belief that she is severely mentally ill and a victim as much as he was.

"It would have been wrong to paint her as a monster, because she's unwell, and the system's failed her," he told The Independent.

"I really did feel quite confronted with just how much lack of resources there seemed to be — how the police have been gutted," he added. "Like, why wasn't she being helped in some way? I left with more questions than answers."

Gadd told GQ that he purposely concealed the identity of the real Martha within the series.

"We've gone to such great lengths to disguise her to the point that I don't think she would recognize herself. What's been borrowed is an emotional truth, not a fact-by-fact profile of someone," Gadd said.

He also told Variety that "due to where things ended in real life," he wasn't concerned about his real stalker attempting to contact him because of the show's popularity.

Read the original article on Business Insider