Gentleman Jack to return for a second series, following its hugely successful debut on BBC One
I'm utterly delighted that we've been recommissioned, because there are so many more big, bold stories to tell about Anne Lister and Ann Walker. A massive thank you to the BBC and HBO and to everyone at Lookout Point.Sally Wainwright
Episode one of the drama, starring Suranne Jones as the remarkable Anne Lister, aired on BBC One last Sunday night to widespread acclaim from critics and viewers alike. The episode was the most successful launch for a new BBC drama this year, winning its 9pm slot with an average overnight audience of 5.1 million viewers, and a peak of 5.6 million.
Gentleman Jack is a Lookout Point production for BBC One, co-produced with HBO, and written by Sally Wainwright (Happy Valley, Last Tango in Halifax, To Walk Invisible). The second series will again use the real life diaries of Anne Lister - part of which were written in code - as its source, with every part of Lister’s story based in historical fact and the five million words she wrote in her journals.
On news of the recommission, Sally Wainwright says: “It's so exciting that so many people have had such a positive response to Suranne's exuberant performance as the brilliant, life-affirming Anne Lister and to Sophie's beautiful performance as her courageous partner, Ann Walker. I'm utterly delighted that we've been recommissioned, because there are so many more big, bold stories to tell about Anne Lister and Ann Walker. A massive thank you to the BBC and HBO and to everyone at Lookout Point.”
Suranne Jones says: “I’m so thrilled that I will be joining Sally Wainwright on the second part of Anne’s journey. We always dreamed there would be more and now we get to play it all out. A huge thank you to the BBC, HBO and Lookout Point for giving us our second series. It’s such amazing and positive news. I love working with the brilliant and talented Sophie Rundle and can’t wait to create some more Lister and Walker moments with her too.”
Piers Wenger, Controller of BBC Drama, adds: “Gentleman Jack exudes sass and originality, and has been a huge hit with our BBC One audience. We look forward to continuing Anne Lister’s journey with Sally, Suranne and the rest of the team.”
Faith Penhale, executive producer for Lookout Point, says: “I’m thrilled that viewers have embraced Anne Lister with the passion and positivity that she deserves. Sally and Suranne’s achievement in bringing this remarkable and inspirational figure back to life has been quite incredible and we can’t wait to create the next chapter in Anne’s story.”
Francesca Orsi, executive vice president, HBO Drama Programming adds: “We’re thrilled that Anne Lister’s story has resonated so powerfully with audiences in the U.S. and abroad, and we’re grateful to Sally Wainwright and the entire Gentleman Jack family for bringing her story to life.”
Gentleman Jack also stars Sophie Rundle as Ann Walker, Gemma Whelan as Marian Lister, Gemma Jones as Aunt Anne Lister and Timothy West as Jeremy Lister. Series one’s ensemble cast also includes Stephanie Cole, Peter Davison, Amelia Bullmore, Vincent Franklin, Shaun Dooley, Joe Armstrong, Rosie Cavaliero, Thomas Howes, Katherine Kelly, Sofie Gråbøl, Derek Riddell, Lydia Leonard, Jodhi May, George Costigan, Sylvia Syms, Brendon Patricks, Jessica Baglow, Albane Courtois, Ben Hunter, Tom Lewis and Anthony Flanagan.
Further details of the second series, which will again consist of eight episodes, will be announced in due course.
Gentleman Jack was recommissioned by Charlotte Moore, Director of BBC Content, and Piers Wenger, Controller of BBC Drama. Executive Producers are Sally Wainwright, Faith Penhale and Laura Lankester for Lookout Point, and Ben Irving for BBC One. The first series was directed by Sally Wainwright, Sarah Harding and Jennifer Perrott, produced by Lookout Point for BBC One, and co-produced with HBO. The producer is Phil Collinson.
Series one of Gentleman Jack will continue with its second episode this Sunday at 9pm on BBC One. The first episode is available to watch now on BBC iPlayer.