ITV has confirmed that crime drama DCI Banks will return for a new six-part series starring Stephen Tompkinson, Andrea Lowe and Caroline Catz.
Produced by award-winning indie Left Bank Pictures, the new series will comprise 6 x 60’ episodes based on three of the internationally successful novels from the pen of author and Banks creator Peter Robinson. Two episodes will be devoted to each of the three stories entitled Wednesday’s Child, Piece of My Heart and Bad Boy.
Filming will take place in Yorkshire and begins in August 2013. The series will see the return from maternity leave of DS Annie Cabbot, played by Andrea Lowe (Love Life, Monroe), immediately thrown into a harrowing case for a new single mother. Having acknowledged their feelings for one another in the last series, the new episodes will focus on whether a romantic relationship between Banks and Annie can ever be a reality. However, there are inevitable complications as the pair come to acknowledge their own unique and challenging roles as colleagues and parents.
Caroline Catz (Doc Martin) will also return to the series playing DI Helen Morton, the disarmingly blunt and often socially inept detective who joined Banks’ team when Annie left for maternity. Helen must confront her inflexible approach to both her home and work life; can her relationship with Banks help her to understand when to bend the rules? With both Helen and Annie working under Banks, will he successfully be able to juggle the opposing views of these two strong willed independent women? How far will Banks go to keep both these women at his side?
This series will also see the surprise introduction of Banks’ university dropout daughter, Tracy. Although on the surface, Banks and Tracy have a good relationship, it becomes clear that neither father nor daughter really know each other as well as they pretend. The distance between the pair means Banks cannot see the real danger Tracy soon throws herself into until it is too late…
The first story, Wednesday’s Child, which revolves around a strange and sinister child abduction undertaken by a man and a woman claiming to be social workers, will be written by lead writer Robert Murphy (Strike Back, Cape Wrath) and Rob Williams (Eastenders, Holby City). Robert Murphy will also adapt Piece of My Heart, where the body of a journalist in a remote village connects Banks to a death in the 1980s revolving around the surviving members of a cult band. In the final story Bad Boy, which will be written and adapted by Cath Tregenna (Lewis, Law & Order: UK), a terrible chain of events is set in motion by the discovery of a loaded gun in a young girl’s bedroom, that ultimately puts Banks’ daughter in mortal danger.
DCI Banks will be produced by Emma Kingsman-Lloyd (Life of Crime, Lip Service), who was also responsible for the last series. Left Bank Pictures Chief Executive Andy Harries, Gabriel Silver and Robert Murphy will executive produce the drama.
The series has been commissioned for ITV by Director of Drama Commissioning, Steve November.
“DCI Banks has become a firm favourite amongst the ITV Drama audience and I’m very pleased we have commissioned a third series,” said Steve. “The new stories will pose searching questions for Banks as ultimately he’s forced to take extreme action to keep his team together,” added Steve.
Executive producer, Andy Harries said: “I’m delighted by the continued success of DCI Banks. Stephen Tompkinson and the whole team have turned a hit series of novels into an international success story that began, like so many of the great TV detectives, on ITV.”