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James Graham’s Sherwood set to return for a second series on the BBC

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“The cleverest, most compelling show I’ve seen in years… a magisterial state-of-the-nation piece” ***** – The Guardian

“James Graham strikes gold” ***** – The Telegraph

“Sympathetic, vibrant storytelling” **** – The Independent

“Utterly compelling” ***** – The Daily Mail Weekend

“A whodunnit, a local love letter and a state-of-the-nation polemic, all at once. Just about perfect” – The Times

Sherwood launched to over six million viewers on the BBC (seven-day consolidated) and has been hailed by critics as one of TV’s greatest dramas of recent years. The drama, which follows a tense and heartwrenching investigation into two shocking and unexpected killings which shatter an already fractured community, is award-winning playwright and dramatist James Graham’s most personal work, having been inspired, in part, by real events that occurred in the Nottinghamshire mining village in which he grew up.

The drama has been recommissioned by the BBC for a second series for which Graham will once again look to take inspiration from the pit villages and surrounding towns of his home county. The new series will continue the themes of examining the lives and legacy of those governed by Britain’s industrial past with stories from communities of the ‘red wall’ towns, the controversial deployment of so-called ‘spycops’ and how seismic ripples from the past can come back to haunt the present.

James Graham says: “I’ve been so deeply moved by the response to Sherwood. These stories come from my home, and I want to specifically express gratitude to my community for whom I know these subjects can be difficult, but – I hope – important ones to explore.

The East Midlands and former ‘red wall’ areas like it are never just one thing – politically or culturally – and it’s been the honour of my life to give voice and character to a place I love. It’s a county of great stories and legends, past and present, and I can’t wait to show audiences more. It’s also a joy to see our incredible cast be so celebrated, along with lead director Lewis Arnold, who I owe a great debt, and Ben Williams. None of this would have been possible without House Productions championing and supporting me every step of the way, and without the public-service remit of the BBC.”

Ben Irving, Acting Director of BBC Drama, says: “We are thrilled that James Graham and the team at House have agreed to return to the world of Sherwood a second time. This series has been met with an incredible reaction from audiences on the BBC thanks to the amazing work of all involved.”

Juliette Howell and Tessa Ross, Executive Producers for House, add: “No single place is defined by just one story, and it was always our intention, and hope, that James would get to return to the wider community of Nottinghamshire to build on the world created in Sherwood and explore more characters and their stories, delving into the issues and relationships that have long shaped them.

“We couldn’t be more thrilled by the response to series one and are so grateful to the incredible team that has brought this show to life, including the brilliant Lewis Arnold and the phenomenal cast who have inhabited these beautifully complex characters which have so resonated with viewers. We can’t wait to return to Sherwood, with James, to start work on series two.”

Mark Linsey, MD of Scripted at BBC Studios, says: “James Graham and House as a team have a standout record of creating brilliant television, and it has been wonderful to watch the reception from audiences here in the UK to Sherwood. Ahead of series one launching globally across markets, including the US, Singapore and Australia, it is exciting to confirm that audiences can eagerly look forward to a second exploration of Nottingham once they have also been able to watch the all-star cast of series one deliver a powerful and gripping performance.”

Sherwood series two (6×60’) will be produced by House Productions. James Graham will write all six episodes and executive produce alongside Juliette Howell, Tessa Ross and Harriet Spencer for House Productions and Ben Irving for the BBC. The new series was commissioned by Charlotte Moore, BBC Chief Content Officer and Ben Irving, Acting Head of Drama. BBC Studios, which owns House Productions, is the international distributor.

Further information and casting details to be announced in due course.