Acorn TV is bringing back one of its most popular original series. The network announced its first series commission – a new season of mystery series Agatha Raisin for premiere in 2018 — as part of Monday’s TCA winter press tour.
Based on MC Beaton’s best-selling novels, Agatha Raisin follows a London PR whiz turned amateur sleuth, who becomes entangled in mischief, mayhem, and murder when she opts for early retirement in a small village in the Cotswolds. Series 2 begins production in April 2018 for a late 2018 premiere. Series 2 will adapt three of MC Beaton’s novels, The Wizard of Evesham, The Curious Curate and The Fairies of Fryham and will be available internationally as three 90-minute television movies or six 45-minute episodes.
Ashley Jensen (Catastrophe, Extras, Ugly Betty), who can currently be seen in Acorn TV’s Love, Lies & Records, returns in the lead role.
Agatha Raisin was created for television by Free@Last TV. Barry Ryan and David Walton will continue to produce the series with Michele Buck from Company Pictures remaining on board as executive producer and Guy Hescott as producer. Acorn Media Enterprises, the UK-based development division for the Acorn brand of RLJ Entertainment, has partnered with Free@LastTV and Company Pictures to co-produce the new season along with Acorn Media International distributing in all English-speaking territories and International distributor all3media International distributing in the rest of the world.
Shane Murphy, Managing Director, Acorn Media Enterprises, said, “After our success with co-producing several critically-acclaimed Acorn TV Originals including Love, Lies & Records, Striking Out, and Agatha Christie’s The Witness for the Prosecution, we’re thrilled to bring back our first Original Series as our first commission. When the UK broadcaster chose not to renew it, Acorn decided to step in and fully commission the show itself in-order to keep this terrific series going for our subscribers. We’re ecstatic to make it our first official full commission. We look forward to announcing several more commissions in the coming months.”
“After another record year and ending 2017 with our biggest month of acquisitions yet in December, we’re thrilled to announce our first commission, adds Acorn TV General Manager Matthew Graham. “Agatha Raisin remains one of Acorn TV’s most popular series and the fans have been clamoring for new episodes since its premiere in August 2016.”
Graham notes, “2018 is shaping up to be our best year yet with even more exclusives and Originals for our subscribers. Acorn TV will feature ten Acorn TV Originals including BBC comedy Detectorists, new ITV drama Girlfriends and the return of Irish legal drama Striking Out, as well as exclusive new seasons of A Place to Call Home, Delicious, The Heart Guy, The Good Karma Hospital, The Brokenwood Mysteries, 800 Words, and Murdoch Mysteries, among many other much-loved series. As an independent SVOD, we’re passionate about curating the very best in British television as well as amazing series out of Ireland, Canada, New Zealand, Australia and more.”
Acorn TV premiered the pilot movie Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death and its follow-up eight-episode first season in August 2016. In the first season, Agatha found her hopes of a quiet life dashed when more murders started occurring in her village. Drawn into their mysteries, Agatha attempted to solve the crimes… often in rather unorthodox ways.
Returning for Series 2 are Agatha’s former assistant, Roy (Mathew Horne); eager Detective Constable Bill Wong (Matt McCooey); and her cleaner, Gemma (Katy Wix).