Premiere dates announced for 'The Hour,' 'Luther'

BBC America will launch six-part crime drama “Whitechapel,” in which modern-day killers copycat infamous crimes of the past, beginning Nov. 2.

The cabler also announced that “The Hour,” starring Dominic West, Romola Garai and Ben Wishaw, will premiere Aug. 17, while the second season of “Luther,” starring West’s former “The Wire” compatriot Idris Elba, will bow Oct. 5.

The three series will be part of the newly branded BBC America drama franchise “Dramaville,” which Elba is hosting and producing through his Headshell Prods. shingle. All three series under the “Dramaville” banner will air at 10 p.m. Wednesdays. “British drama has long been a standard bearer of great scripted television and ‘Dramaville’ will showcase the very best of British creativity in a clear destination drama fans can easily find,” BBC Worldwide America g.m. of channels Perry Simon said. “It’s a real pleasure to welcome Idris back to the BBC America family as the host of ‘Dramaville.’ “

“Whitechapel” stars Rupert Penry-Jones and Phil Davis as detectives challenged by the bizarre increase in murders in East London. Steve Pemberton co-stars. Written by Ben Court and Caroline Ip, “Whitechapel” is exec produced by Sally Woodward Gentle for Carnival Films. ITV premiered “Whitechapel” in Blighty in 2009.

Spy thriller “The Hour” is set in the 1950s London newsroom of the BBC, with the characters of West, Garai and Whishaw also caught up in a love triangle. Jane Featherstone, Derek Wax and Abi Morgan exec produce for Kudos Film and Television, Lucy Richer for the BBC. Shine Intl. distributes.

“Luther,” for which Elba was nominated for a Golden Globe, brings back writer Neil Cross, with Philippa Giles exec producing. In Britain, it will premiere on BBC One this summer.

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