Line of Duty

Anatomy of a Hit: Line of Duty

The critically acclaimed second series hit our screens in 2014 and realising they had a hit on their hands, the BBC commissioned two more that year. Having become the most popular drama series broadcast on BBC Two in the multi-channel era, Line of Duty made the jump to BBC One.

 With filming for series five underway and fans eagerly anticipating the return of the AC-12 team in 2019, Line of Duty is widely recognised as the decade’s best British drama series.

Top writers discuss their craft: “First drafts don’t have to be perfect, they just have to be written"

Reece Shearsmith, Jed Mercurio, Melvyn Bragg (Chair), Heidi Thomas and Steve Pemberton (Credit: Paul Hampartsoumian)

Melvyn Bragg was talking at a special live edition of The South Bank Show, featuring four of the UK’s leading TV writers – Jed Mercurio (writer and creator of hit police corruption thriller Line of Duty); Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith (black comedy anthology Inside No. 9); and Heidi Thomas (period drama Call the Midwife) – discussing their craft.

Gurinder Chadha: The relationship between Britain and India didn’t just start in the 1960s

Gurinder Chadha (Credit: Rex Features)

It’s 4pm on a Friday afternoon, a time of the week when most of us are preparing to wind down the working week. Not Gurinder Chadha, co-creator and director of ITV’s new period drama, Beecham House, otherwise known as “Downton in Delhi”.

She’s at work in a Soho edit suite, putting the finishing touches to another project, her latest movie, Blinded by the Light. The film is based on journalist and broadcaster Sarfraz Manzoor’s memoir, Greetings from Bury Park.

Line of Duty’s Martin Compston joins new drama Traces

Martin Compston as Steve Arnott in Line of Duty (Credit: BBC)

Molly Windsor (Cheat), Laura Fraser (The Loch) and Jennifer Spence (You Me Her) are set to join Line of Duty’s Martin Compston in Amelia Bullmore’s (Scott & Bailey) new drama as three forensic scientists who aim to discover the truth behind an unsolved murder.

The crime thriller follows Emma Hedges (Molly Windsor), a new lab assistant who joins the Scottish Institute of Forensic Science and Anatomy (SIFA) and discovers a fictitious case of a murder scene that bares a striking resemblance to memories from her past.

Stephen Graham discusses his career and what advice he'd give to aspiring actors

Stephen Graham (Credit: Paul Hampartsoumian)

Over the past couple of decades, Stephen Graham has become increasingly hard to avoid on both TV and film. The variety of roles he’s taken on is extraordinary. He can play cops and robbers, modern and period drama, ordinary and larger-than-life characters. He is convincing in all of them.

Lennie James: taking television to new places

(Credit: Sky)

There is a scientific way to calculate how much a television audience appreciates a show. An “appreciation index” involves panels, scores out of 10, and demographic weighting. Now, however, there is another way: just take note how quickly an audience comes back for more.

When Sky released Lennie James’s drama Save Me (the possessive apostrophe is because he created, wrote and starred in it) as a box set on the last day of February, it took a week for 700,000 viewers to watch all six episodes.