BBC AMERICA’s highly-acclaimed series, Broadchurch, returns with a new case on Wednesday, June 28 at 10/9c. Featuring a strongly-talented cast, spearheaded by recent Golden Globe®-winner Olivia Colman (The Night Manager, Fleabag) and Emmy®-winner David Tennant (Jessica Jones, Doctor Who), the third and final chapter from writer, creator and executive producer Chris Chibnall, sees the detective duo Detective Sergeant Ellie Miller (Colman) and Detective Inspector Alec Hardy (Tennant) investigate a serious sexual assault that shocks the tight-knitted seaside town to its core.
Executive Producer Jane Featherstone on the new case: “We start the final season in the trilogy three years on from the last season, five years on from the start. There is a bold, new crime story, which forces us to ask whether the town has a crack running through it caused by Danny Latimer’s death; is this new crime somehow the long-term legacy of that dark moment? Our central characters must contend with this possibility as they battle to make hope, friendship and love triumph over fear and suspicion, as a host of new suspects present themselves. The great privilege of long-form storytelling is building a meaningful relationship between our characters and the audience, and I am excited for the audience to see how Ellie, Hardy and the Latimers have fared in the last few years. It is a fond farewell for those of us involved in the series for so many years, but as far as I am concerned, the community of Broadchurch will carry on living long after we’ve gone.”
Sarah Barnett, President of BBC AMERICA, commented: “Broadchurch is a remarkable and ingenious crime mystery that ups the ante with complex characters brilliantly articulated by actors at the top of their game. This new mystery is as compulsively riveting as ever. It is simply first rate television.”
Broadchurch is part of BBCA’s robust scripted slate with upcoming premieres including Orphan Black (returns for its fifth and final season on Saturday, June 10), Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency (currently in production), the Doctor Who Christmas Special, and Killing Eve.
A FOREWORD BY CHRIS CHIBNALL, WRITER, CREATOR AND EXECUTIVE PRODUCER
Welcome back to Broadchurch, and our third and final story.
It’s been an extraordinary journey: from tiny beginnings inspired by a walk in 2011 along the Jurassic Coast where I live, to a global success in 180 territories, with two international remakes, a novel adaptation and Broadchurch walking tours that take a similar route to my first walk. It’s been quite a ride. We’ve kept a lot of secrets, had a lot of fun and hopefully given people another reason to stay in on Wednesday nights.
The world we live in now feels some distance from the world I was writing about when we started. The state of the UK and its preoccupations are different. Each story has deliberately tackled a new area. For the final story, Ellie Miller and Alec Hardy conduct a new investigation, into a serious sexual assault.
We’ve spent the time since the series was last on air researching and developing this story. Myself and Script Executive Samantha Hoyle have worked closely with support organizations in the Dorset area who work with victims of sexual assault. We’ve spent time with the amazing support workers who run referral centers. We’ve developed relationships with and talked in depth with Independent Sexual Violence Advisors, as well as police who investigate these crimes, and survivors of these crimes. These extraordinary people have advised us every step of the way: from storylining, to scripts, on set during production (some of our advisors even appear in one sequence later on in the season) and through the post production process.
I wanted to tell this story because these crimes are increasing. In the UK, recorded sexual offences have been increasing year on year for the past decade: the most recent annual statistics showed an increase of 41% in reported rapes, compared to the previous year.Representations of, and attitudes to, sex have become more oppositional and confrontational. Sexualized images are all around, access to porn is easier and seemingly more common. It’s an issue for couples, for parents and families, for individuals and for communities. And amidst all this, the gender divide often feels more polarized than it has in decades.
To explore this, I needed to call on DS Ellie Miller and DI Alec Hardy one last time. This story begins three years after we were last in Broadchurch. Lives have moved on. Some people have left, some have arrived – and there’s a new case to test this old partnership. There are new suspects, new revelations and fresh truths to be confronted in the lives of Broadchurch’s residents.
You can expect to meet old friends, and new faces. You’ll see more of Broadchurch than ever before: new locations, and more extraordinary Dorset landscape.
What hasn’t changed is the amazing array of acting talent in the show. Our cast, led by the incomparable Olivia Colman, David Tennant, Jodie Whittaker and Andy Buchan, are joined by a host of brilliant new recruits: including Julie Hesmondhalgh, Sarah Parish, Lenny Henry, Mark Bazeley, Georgina Campbell, Charlie Higson and Roy Hudd.
Broadchurch has been a life-changing experience for me, and for many of us who make it. It’s been a strange, mad honor to experience the passion of audiences for this story and these characters. It’s been wonderful to film in (and showcase) the South West of England – the people of Bridport, West Bay and Clevedon have done us proud across all three seasons. But all good stories come to an end. I hope this one has enough twists and turns, laughter and tears to go out in style.