BBC1 commissions new drama from The Hour’s Abi Morgan

The recent Emmy award-winner has created a new six-part crime series called River which will air in 2015

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It’s been a good week for British TV writer Abi Morgan. 

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On Sunday her period newsroom drama The Hour – despite being axed by the BBC earlier this year – won her the outstanding drama writer accolade at the Emmy awards. Now the Beeb have decided they want her back – and on BBC1, too. 

Morgan, whose CV includes Oscar-winner The Iron Lady, Shame, Birdsong and Brick Lane, has created a six-part drama for BBC1, following brilliant yet troubled police officer John River. 

The series will see River struggle to put the murder victims he comes across to rest, while ensuring that his fragile mental state doesn’t cost him his job. 

BBC1’s Charlotte Moore said: “Abi’s one of Britain’s most distinctive and original storytellers, and her ability to push the boundaries of the genre in surprising ways makes River her perfect debut on BBC1.”

BBC drama commissioning controller Ben Stephenson added: “It was amazing to see Abi winning the Emmy in LA on Sunday night – it shows what a world-class talent she is. I am delighted that she will now be turning her attention to her first series for BBC1. It’s a corker with all Abi’s unique qualities – smart, moving, warm and full of huge surprises.”

Morgan’s award-winning series The Hour, which starred Ben Whishaw, Dominic West and Romola Garai, ran for two series on BBC2 before being axed at the beginning of this year. The BBC said at the time: “We loved the show but have to make hard choices to bring new shows through.”

River will film in London next year and air on BBC1 in 2015.


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