ITV’s ‘Morse’ prequel ‘Endeavour’ goes into production

Endeavour Morse back in Oxford.

The first full series of the ‘Morse‘ prequel, ‘Endeavour‘ has begun production following the impressive ratings of 8.2m for the one-off episode that commemorated the 25th Anniversary at the start of the year – making it the most popular single film on any channel in the last 5 years.

Shaun Evans (The Last Weekend, Silk), who won over critics and viewers alike with his portrayal of young Morse, will return for four new films written by ‘Lewis‘ creator and ‘Morse‘ writer Russell Lewis.

Acclaimed stage and screen actor Roger Allam (The Jury, Parade’s End, The Thick of It) returns as Endeavour’s senior partner, Detective Inspector Fred Thursday. Stage actor Sean Rigby takes on the role of a young PC Strange – the character who appeared in the original Morse series, played by James Grout.

James Bradshaw will return as Dr Max Debryn and John Thaw’s daughter Abigail will make further guest appearances as Dorothea Frazil. Supporting cast include Anton Lesser (The Hour, Garrow’s Law, The Scapegoat) as Chief Supt Reginald Bright and Jack Laskey (Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows) as DS Peter Jakes.

The new series will be produced by Dan McCulloch (Endeavour, 10 Minute Tales) and executive produced by Mammoth Screen’s Joint Managing Directors, Michele Buck and Damien Timmer (Monroe, Lewis, Marple), writer Russell Lewis and Rebecca Eaton for co-producers Masterpiece.

The first film is directed by Ed Bazalgette (A Mother’s Son, Vera) and the second by Tom Vaughan (Starter for Ten, What Happens in Vegas). Acclaimed novelist Colin Dexter, whose first Morse story was published in 1975, will act as consultant for the series.

Mammoth Screen will produce the 4 x 120 episodes, which have now begun filming on location in Oxford.