Based on the autobiographical novels of the real-life Gerald Durrell, including an adaptation of his best-known work, My Family and Other Animals, The Durrells stars Keeley Hawes and explores the lives and loves of the family as they try to adapt to a life so very alien to the one they had in Britain.
But what can we expect in the fourth and final series? Here’s everything you need to know.
The Durrells’ fourth and final series will begin on Sunday 7th April at 8pm on ITV.
A fourth series has been on the cards for quite some time, with Bafta nominee Simon Nye expressing his desire to keep penning adventures for the family. “The viewing figures have been pretty good, and there’s been a lot of love for the show,” he previously told RadioTimes.com.
Callum Woodhouse returns as Leslie Durrell, with Milo Parker back as youngest son Gerry Durrell.
Taxi driver Spiro Halikiopoulos (played by Greek actor Alexis Georgoulis) returns to the cast after an eventful third series. Also returning are Miles Jupp as Louisa’s hapless cousin Basil, Anna Savva as the Durrells’ maid Lugaretzia, and Elli Tringou as Leslie’s ex-girlfriend Daphne.
Yorgos Karamihos plays Theo, with Lucy Black as his wife Florence.
What will happen in The Durrells series four?
While series three of the ITV drama was set in 1937, the fourth and final series will speed through the Durrells’ remaining time on the island and take us all the way to 1939 – and according to Keeley Hawes, things will get “dark” as the family’s idyllic life on Corfu is interrupted by the outbreak of World War Two.
“It gets a little bit dark for the Durrells, which has always been a light and lovely show,” Hawes told RadioTimes.com at the Radio Times Covers Party. “The war is approaching, and they have to deal with that – as indeed the Durrells themselves did.”
She added: “I think this series – I really think it’s the best yet. Everything was thrown at it because we knew it would be the last, so I’m really excited for everyone to see it.”
Speaking on set, Hawes told press: “There’s a lot of darkness on the horizon and Louisa is sticking her head in the sand because she doesn’t want things to change. She doesn’t want the kids to get any taller either! She doesn’t want to lose them. She has built this wonderful life and they’re very happy and then all of a sudden there’s this massive spanner in the works.
“Really right to the very last minute she’s saying there’s not going to be a war, and then finally she has to face the facts and then it takes a darker, very sad turn… Inevitably it is dramatic, but it’s a very Durrells ending.”
Is this the end of Louisa Durrell and Spiro’s relationship?
In series three, romance finally bloomed between English widow Louisa Durrell and Greek taxi driver Spiro (Alexis Georgoulis) when the two admitted their feelings for each other. Alas, things soon went awry for these star-crossed lovers when Spiro’s wife ended their estrangement and returned home with their children, killing the fledgling love affair between Spiro and Louisa.
In series four we’ll see how Spiro and Louisa’s friendship survives.
“Spiro and Mrs Durrell, yeah – their friendship has to – well, we’ll have to wait and see what happens at the end of the series,” Hawes teased.
Addressing the future of their relationship she said: “It is awkward because they’ve sort of declared themselves, so it’s inevitable really that it’s a little bit awkward and they’re wondering how to get their friendship back on track and if it’s possible to do that, which I don’t think it really is!”
What’s next for Leslie, Larry, Gerry and Margo Durrell?
Novelist Larry Durrell (Josh O’Connor) is back at his typewriter trying to get some peace and quiet, while also enjoying the attention of two ballet dancers who are staying at the house.
Leslie remains “stuck on Daphne,” according to Callum Woodhouse – and while he was fired from the police last series, he is now the self-appointed “policeman of the Durrells house.” After the events of series three where Leslie believed he was going to be a father only to have that future snatched away from him, he goes back “to his more basic self” – so expect plenty of guns and dangerous antics.
Louisa’s only daughter Margo is still in search of her life’s purpose, and series four will take her temporarily back to England to “find herself a bit,” Daisy Waterstone said. As for a love interest? “You can guarantee there’ll be a few.”
As for Gerry, he’s growing up – quite literally, as Milo Parker has had a massive growth spurt since we last saw him. But his interest in fellow nature-lover and local girl Galini will not distract him from his determination to build his own zoo on Corfu.
“Gerry continues to extend his menageries, so we had two lemurs this year, we had a barn owl – well, two, called Twit and Two,” Parker revealed.
Keeley Hawes said, “It’s a bittersweet thing. I’m so pleased that we have had the opportunity to do this series and finish it off properly, to tell their story and give them a proper send off feels like the right thing to do. And it feels like the right thing to do for us because we are like a little family.”
But there has been talk of a spin-off, with executive producer Sally Woodward Gentle saying it’s something she “would love” to do in the future.
“[The Durrell family] did go on and do extraordinary things, so I’d love to,” she said. “There’s so many more stories to tell. It was just the beginning of Gerry’s adventures with animals, Margo went off and set up a boarding house in Bournemouth and Louisa lived just across the road. It did just continue. We’d love to do it again. We’ve always wanted to do a Durrells Easter and Christmas.”
Hawes also said the cast would be “all be up for” another round of the show, explaining: “It’s not like they left Corfu and were really boring in front of the telly: they all went off and had even more interesting lives. I know we’d all be up for something like that, and I think people who love the show would be keen, but it’s one of those things…”
Where is The Durrells filmed?
The Durrells is filmed in Corfu, with the exception of certain scenes and interiors which are created at the comparatively less glamorous Ealing Studios in London.
The majority of filming takes place in a village named Danilia, a replica of a traditional 1930s Corfu village.
When filming, the cast stay at the nearby Corfu Imperial Luxury Resort.