By Sahil Patel
It looks like Amazon is in the business of saving TV shows, too.
The company has ordered a third season of the critically-acclaimed BBC crime drama “Ripper Street,” while also acquiring exclusive subscription streaming rights in the UK for the show’s first two seasons.
Set in the late 1880s London, shortly after the infamous Jack the Ripper crime spree, the period drama follows the detectives and policemen at the Whitechapel H Division who investigated those murders as well as new ones that are beginning to turn up. The show is created by the BAFTA-nominated Richard Warlow and stars Matthew Macfadyen (“Pride & Prejudice”), Jerome Flynn (“Game of Thrones”), and Adam Rothenberg.
The third season will be produced by Tiger Aspect Productions and Lookout Point. In the US, BBC America will serve as a co-producer. BBC’s involvement with the continuation of the series means that after the third season has been made available on Amazon Prime Instant Video in the UK*, it will air on BBC One a few months later.
BBC Worldwide will handle worldwide distribution rights. Filming is set to begin in May.
With this third-season commission, Amazon joins SVOD competitor Netflix in reviving a critically-acclaimed TV franchise. Netflix famously resurrected “Arrested Development” for an exclusive fourth season, and has been responsible for bringing back a US-based one-hour crime drama, “The Killing” (which originally aired on AMC), multiple times.
* Amazon has rebranded its LoveFilm streaming service in the UK as Amazon Prime Instant Video.