Channel 4’s recent documentary about Richard III, The King in the Car Park, proved such a hit with viewers that the broadcaster has commissioned a follow-up to air on More4 later this month.
The first programme told the tale of the network of amateur historians whose collective work led to the discovery of Richard’s remains, and its sequel Richard III: The Unseen Story will focus on the archaeologists and scientists who oversaw the Plantagenet monarch’s exhumation.
Chronicling five months of intense archaeological detective work, the programme will feature new interviews with leading scientists to tell the story of the investigation in unprecedented detail.
Richard III: The Unseen Story will take viewers inside the lab at the University of Leicester and explain how scientists studying Richard’s skeleton were able to tease out clues about the king’s diet, social status and the injuries that led to his death.
It’ll explain how doubts about the authenticity of the remains were dispelled and reveal how the king’s relatives were traced and the DNA match with Richard was made.
The documentary will also explore the archaeological dig’s other major finds and explain how the king’s final resting place, Greyfriars Church, was uncovered in Leicester.
C4’s commissioning editor John Hay, who commissioned the follow-up, said of the new film: “The more detail you get on this story, the more extraordinary it gets, so we wanted to give viewers the chance to appreciate and enjoy the University of Leicester’s amazing scientific detective work in full.”
Aired the same day as the bones were authenticated, Monday 4 February, Richard III: The King in the Car Park was seen by over 4m viewers and referenced in 60,000 tweets (many of them jokes).
Richard III: The Unseen Story will air on More4 on Wednesday 27 February at 9:00pm.