Production has begun on a second season of Starz and BBC One’s mystery drama “The Missing,” Variety has learned. The thriller will return with a new case, new characters and a new location, and will star “The Walking Dead’s” David Morrissey, “The Casual Vacancy’s” Keeley Hawes and season one alum Tchéky Karyo, reprising his role as Julien Baptiste.
The eight-part anthology series is produced by New Pictures in association with Two Brothers Pictures and Playground for BBC One and Starz. “The Missing” will once again be written by Harry and Jack Williams, with the new installment being directed in its entirety by Ben Chanan (“The Last Kingdom”).
The new series follows Sam (Morrissey) and Gemma (Hawes), whose daughter Alice went missing in 2003. In 2014, a young British woman stumbles through the streets of her German hometown and collapses. Her name is Alice Webster (Abigail Hardingham), and she has been missing for 11 years. Alice’s return sends shockwaves through the small community. Told in dual timelines, flitting between 2014 and the present day, we follow Alice’s family as they are thrown back into a turmoil that threatens to tear them apart at the seams. When French missing persons detective Julien Baptiste (Karyo), races across Europe to pursue a 12-year-old case that he never let die, we begin to explore the murky morality and emotional complexity of what happens when the missing child you’ve been longing to return actually comes back.
The lead trio are joined by Roger Allam; Laura Fraser; Anastasia Hille; Lia Williams; Abigail Hardingham; Jake Davies; Florian Bartholomäi and Daniel Ezra. Season 1 starred James Nesbitt and Frances O’Connor alongside Karyo, and scored two Emmy nominations and two Golden Globe nods.
“While we were writing the first series, we began talking about what the show would have been had Oliver Hughes been found. This story grew out of that discussion. It’s the other side of the coin to series 1 – an exploration of loss, of freedom, of how the past can shape the present in myriad ways that we cannot fully understand,” said Harry and Jack Williams in a statement. “It’s bigger, more ambitious, and we’re delighted to have such a brilliantly talented cast joining Julien Baptiste for a new case.”
“I am so proud to have such a high calibre of cast attached to this project and, with the genius of Harry and Jack Williams’ scripts, I know the audience will be gripped to this series just as much as they were to the first. And the beloved Julien Baptiste is back!” said Willow Grylls, executive producer for New Pictures. “I am also thrilled to have the wonderful Ben Chanan as director leading the charge, telling the story as it twists and turns over two time frames. ‘The Missing’ series two will be just as thrilling, heart wrenching and character driven as you’d hope it to be.”
“The success of series one and response from the audience was incredible, and I am extremely excited for what the second series holds,” added Polly Hill, Controller, BBC Drama Commissioning. “Harry and Jack Williams have delivered compelling original scripts yet again, this time with a completely new case from a different perspective. David Morrissey and Keeley Hawes are two of the finest actors in the country and we are thrilled to have them on board.”
Starz Managing Director Carmi Zlotnik said, “The talented Williams brothers take us on a thrilling journey in this next installment with a new story, characters and locations that ultimately explores what happens when the missing child you’ve been searching for comes home. We are thrilled to continue this limited series and collaboration with the BBC, New Pictures and Playground.”
Executive producers include Harry and Jack Williams, Hill, for the BBC, Willow Grylls, Charlie Pattinson and Elaine Pyke for New Pictures, Colin Callender for Playground, Eurydice Gysel for Czar TV, and Jan Vrints, with Julian Stevens producing.
“The Missing” is produced by New Pictures in association with Two Brothers Pictures, co-produced with Czar TV, VRT, and BNP Paribas Fortis Film Finance and is filmed with the support of the Belgium federal government’s Tax Shelter scheme. Starz retains home video and EST rights in the U.S. and Canada and limited SVOD rights in the U.S. All3media international retains all U.S. rights not obtained by Starz. All3media International handles overseas sales for the show.