ITV’s popular Inspector Morse prequel Endeavour has been given a fifth serie commission and for the first time it will feature six feature length mysteries rather than the usual four.
The series is made by Mammoth Screen for ITV and production will begin later this year for broadcast early 2018.
The announcement follows the successful launch of the fourth series earlier this month, which received critical praise and impressive viewing figures despite strong competition on BBC1. Marking the 30th anniversary of Inspector Morse on ITV, the first episode, which aired on Sunday 8 January, pulled in a consolidated rating of 6.8m and 24% share, which is the biggest audience since 2014 and up on the year on year average by half a million viewers.
Charting the career of the young Endeavour Morse, the hit series has gone from strength to strength since its first outing as a one-off film to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Inspector Morse in 2012. The new series, which will be set in 1968 and continue to be written by creator Russell Lewis, will go into production this Spring.
Creator, Russell Lewis said: “The prospect of creating further chapters in Morse’s secret history is always exciting, but expanding our quartet of investigations to a sextet gives us the opportunity to deliver a truly epic year in the life of Colin Dexter’s immortal creation.”
Shaun Evans is set to reprise his role as the young Morse, starring alongside acclaimed stage and screen actor Roger Allam as Endeavour’s senior officer, Detective Inspector Fred Thursday. Also returning will be series regulars Dakota Blue Richards as WPC Shirley Trewlove, Anton Lesser as Chief Superintendent Reginald Bright and Abigail Thaw as Dorothea Frazil.
Executive producer, Tom Mullens said, “We’re delighted that Endeavour will return next year with another set of striking stories from Russell Lewis and once again it’s an honour to have Shaun Evans and Roger Allam on board, bringing Morse and Thursday exquisitely to life in the ‘revolutionary’ world of 1968.”
Produced by Mammoth Screen and filmed in and around Oxford, the new films will be executive produced by Damien Timmer, MD of Mammoth Screen, one of the UK’s leading independent production companies and an ITV Studios owned company. Writer and creator Russell Lewis will also executive produce, alongside former Endeavour producer Tom Mullens and Rebecca Eaton for WGBH.
Mammoth Screen is very much one of the guiding lights of the UK drama scenes it’s recent productions include THE WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION and POLDARK for BBC1, NW for BBC2 and VICTORIA for ITV. Upcoming productions also include NOUGHTS AND CROSSES for BBC1, THE CITY AND THE CITY for BBC2 and FEARLESS and NEXT OF KIN for ITV.
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