The Last Kingdom's upcoming sequel film Seven Kings Must Die tells a standalone story, according to executive producer Nigel Marchant.
Based on the novels by Bernard Cornwell, the semi-fictional drama series chronicles the violent events that led to the formation of England in the 10th century from the perspective of fictional character Uhtred of Bebbanburg (played by Alexander Dreymon).
The show is coming to an end after five seasons but the saga will continue for one last hurrah, with a feature-length special headed to Netflix that is currently filming in Hungary.
Dreymon has said that the creative team had always planned a five-season arc, based on the ten The Last Kingdom books that had been published at the time of the first season's premiere.
However, since then Cornwell has written a further three entries which serve as the inspiration for Seven Kings Must Die, with the film being an epilogue of sorts existing independently from the main storyline.
As a result, Marchant has said that Seven Kings Must Die will be accessible even to people who have never seen an episode of the television series, describing it as a "standalone" story.
He began: "In terms of season 5, we felt these two central strands of the story were coming together and it was the natural point to finish the TV series. Over the five seasons there was a very definite beginning, middle and end, so it was a group decision that we came to.
"However, we did know there were a few more books (not to spoil anything!) following on from where we get to at the end of season 5. So we did start to talk to Netflix fairly early about whether we could tell that end piece of the jigsaw so that it would feel complete."
The cast of Seven Kings Must Die has been kept under wraps to avoid spoiling which characters survive the events of season 5, but Dreymon is confirmed to be leading an ensemble of new and returning faces.
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Marchant added: "And it was felt that the movie version was the right format to do that. Season 5 does feel like the end of the TV series, and the movie will be much more standalone. It’ll be an extra treat for the fans of the TV series, but you could also watch it even if you’ve never seen the TV show."