Luther creator preparing big-screen version of the Idris Elba drama

Neil Cross has plans to end the hit BBC1 series and make the leap to cinemas

The character of DCI Luther, the maverick cop played by Idris Elba in the hit BBC1 drama, could well be making the move to cinemas.


Creator Neil Cross stated: “We’ll wrap up Luther as a TV show, but I think we’ll then probably make the leap to the big screen with John Luther.”

Speaking about how the series will end, the writer added: “The final scene of the final episode is great and we wouldn’t want to continue. I love an ending. I have a weakness for a powerful and moving ending. We’ll go out big and leave it at that.”

Cross, who was interviewed last night on BBC Radio 4’s Front Row, also discussed the origins of the character and whether he was always intended to be black:

“It was cast as a character, purely and simply, which is one of the aspects that attracted Idris to the role. I have no knowledge or expertise or right to try to tackle in some way the experience of being a black man in modern Britain.

“It would have been an act of tremendous arrogance for me to try to write – and you have to try to imagine the quote marks around the words – a black character because I don’t know what a black character is and we would have ended up with a slightly embarrassed, ignorant, middle-class, white writer’s idea of a black character, which would have been an embarrassment for everybody concerned.

“I suspect that there’s a dearth of decent roles for black actors because most writers are white and they try to write their idea of black and it’s an embarrassment.”


On Tuesday, series two of Luther picked up the prize in the drama series category at the Royal Television Society Programme awards. BBC1 controller Danny Cohen announced in August 2011 that a third series had been commissioned, while a prequel story written by Neil Cross – The Calling: A John Luther Novel – was recently published in paperback.