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The prospect of a visit to Oxford by HRH Princess Margaret, who is to unveil the British Imperial Electric Company’s latest weapon of mass destruction – the ‘Standfast’ Mk II missile – at a Cowley factory, has put a spring in the step of Chief Superintendent Bright. Endeavour, still languishing on General Duties, is excluded from the event. But no sooner has the ceremony drawn to a close than he finds himself deeply embroiled in the affairs of the factory and its owners, the darkly dysfunctional Broom family. For an unpopular worker, Percy Malleson, has been found murdered in a secluded area of the shop floor.
One of his Malleson’s colleagues, Lenny Frost, falls suspect – there is bad blood between them resulting from industrial accident. Bright, under pressure from above, is eager for the case to be resolved as quickly and quietly as possible. But Endeavour, brought into the intoxicating orbit of Alice Vexin, who carries a torch for him from their student days, remains unconvinced this is such an open-and-shut case. Endeavour’s dogged pursuit of justice offends both Bright and the factory’s top brass; as he exhumes secrets that many would rather have remained long buried.
Shaun Evans (The Take, The Last Weekend, Silk), who won over critics and viewers alike with his portrayal of young Morse, has returned to film 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.
Consolidated ratings for the first Endeavour film - which transmitted in January to mark the 25th anniversary of the very first episode of Morse - were 8.2m with an impressive audience share of 30%. This makes it the most popular single film on any channel in the last five years.
The new series is produced by Dan McCulloch (Endeavour, 10 Minute Tales) and executive produced by Mammoth Screen’s Joint Managing Directors, Michele Buck and Damien Timmer, writer Russell Lewis and Rebecca Eaton for WGBH.
Directors are Ed Bazalgette (A Mother's Son, Vera), Tom Vaughan (Starter for Ten, Extraordinary Measures, What Happens in Vegas), Craig Viveiros (The Liability, Ghosted) and Colm McCarthy (Ripper Street, Doctor Who, Injustice). Acclaimed novelist Colin Dexter, whose first Morse story was published in 1975, acts as consultant for the series.