Perez to return to Shetland

Douglas Henshall will return as DI Jimmy Perez in a third series of Shetland.
Douglas Henshall will return as DI Jimmy Perez in a third series of Shetland.

A new series of the crime drama Shetland has been commissioned by BBC One, it was announced today.

The decision follows the success of the recent six-part series, which finished last night and claimed more than a quarter of the Scottish audience.

Produced by ITV Studios through BBC Scotland, Shetland will be filmed next year and return to the TV screens in the same format, with six one-hour episodes.

It will again feature Douglas Henshall in the lead role of DI Jimmy Perez, with the drama being adapted from the successful Shetland-based crime novels of Ann Cleeves. Local actor Steven Robertson, who plays the policeman Sandy Wilson, is also expected to be back, with further casting to be announced in due course.

Ms Cleeves said: “I was delighted by the portrayal of my characters by Dougie Henshall and Steven Robertson. Dougie has just that mix of compassion and authority that I hoped to portray in the novels. It’s very unusual to see a central male character, who’s kind but also strong and decisive. And I love Tosh [who plays Perez’s sidekick but is not in the books]. I wish I’d created her!

“There will certainly be more books. Thin Air will be published in September and we’re planning something a bit special to launch that in the islands – more details nearer the time.”

BBC head of drama production Scotland Christopher Aird said: “Shetland is a really distinctive crime series that has proved hugely popular with audiences both here in Scotland and across the rest of the UK. I am thrilled it has been commissioned for a third outing and rest assured we have some really exciting plans for viewers from DI Perez and his team.”

ITV Studios Elaine Collins, executive producer with Christopher Aird, said: “I’m delighted that Shetland has been recommissioned and proud to have made a distinctive Scottish show that is enjoyed all over the UK. It’s also been a pleasure to work with outstanding actors like Douglas Henshall, Alison O’Donnell and Steven Robertson, who have made Jimmy Perez and his close-knit team a regular fixture in the homes of millions of viewers.”

Shetland, which in this recently-ended second series received 29.5 per cent of the Scottish audience for the first four episodes, was commissioned by BBC One controller Charlotte Moore and BBC drama controller Ben Stephenson.


Add Your Comment
  • Tarique Chowdhury

    • April 16th, 2014 14:58

    Loved both series of ‘Shetland’, the second being even better. We Yorkshire visitors look forward to the next! Get a move on!!

  • Laura Gil

    • April 16th, 2014 18:56

    As a spanish fan of this wonderful drama, I can not wait for the next season. I’ve been delighted all these Tuesdays watching a gem. Congratulations to all the team who made it possible.

  • Hans van Putten

    • April 16th, 2014 19:36

    We stayed late 70’s in Lerwick. Enjoyed those 2 1/2 years very much. So it is for me and my wife a “present” to see the beautiful nature of Shetland and thr great performance of the players. U til now we have all the Sshetland books of Ann Cleeves. Looking forward to see more.

  • Michael Wiseman

    • April 16th, 2014 22:15

    I liked it and watched all of it but being a shetlander notice none of them had a proper Shetland accent ie yuns no da why dae spick do kens

  • roy h chamberlain

    • April 16th, 2014 23:01

    shetland has shown us again what we know that we are missing the place

  • Harry Dent

    • April 17th, 2014 15:00

    My only real gripe, is how far the TV series strays from the books; the mucking-about with characters and settings robbed “Blue Lightning” of both its instensely claustrophobic drama and its truly shocking ending, which would surely have had TV audiences on the edge of their seats.

    That said, I’ve loved watching it and am delighted it’ll be back with a new series.

  • John Wilson

    • April 18th, 2014 12:39

    I caught the second set of two episodes of the latest BBC Shetland crime drama, set in Fair Isle. I watched one in the first series but completely ‘lost the plot’, as they say, i.e. I was too dim to follow the story line.

    This time, I followed the plot, more or less. However, my absorption in following the story was because of the views it afforded of the Fair Isle landscape. Three times in midsummer I’ve sailed from Aberdeen on the overnight ferry from Aberdeen and been mesmerised by the view of Fair Isle as the vessel sailed by in the wee hours. It was rewarding to see so much of the Isle close up. Maybe one day I’ll visit ??

    Is my memory of the 2009 investigation of the murder of a man in Sanday (Orkney) accurate? My recollection is that dozens of police officers from the mainland descended on Sanday to investigate the murder. Is Shetland too jealous of its autonomy to permit a similar ‘invasion’ of mainland investigators, or is it a case of understandable dramatic license in portraying the Lerwick police as being so self-reliant?

  • Mike perry

    • April 18th, 2014 15:54

    Loved the entire series , I hope in the next series that socks can be incorprated in to one or two of the scenes,

  • Bill Smale

    • April 19th, 2014 10:07

    According to Dougie Henshall in the newspaper version of this article, there are 55 million people in the UK. According to the Office of National Statistics, there were nearly 64 million at the last count (mid 2012). Sounds like a job for D.I. Perez !

  • James Trench

    • April 25th, 2014 9:09

    Having ancestors from Shetland (I live in Canada) and seeing the series has made me want to visit. It is a great series and all the cast and crew are to be commended. I will also be buying the books to see the differences that another poster talked about. Curious to read the “shocking” ending to Blue Lightning now.

  • Elizabeth Morewood

    • April 25th, 2014 20:00

    I certainly enjoyed the second better than the first It seemed in the plot clearer and the scenery was better although it was nice to see Sandra Voe . Couldn`t there have been a place for her in the second?


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