Ralf Little (Two Pints of Lager…) has replaced O’Hanlon as the lead detective and will make his debut in the ninth series, alongside names including Nina Wadia, Steve Pemberton and Ade Edmondson among others.
Comic Edmondson will be playing a man called Charles Crabtree who witnesses an attack but may not be telling the whole truth about what happened.
Edmondson is best known for his slapstick sitcom Bottom which aired on BBC Two in the early 90s before continuing as a stage show, but has recently taken on more dramatic roles in Eastenders and Strike Back: Revolution as well as Leo Tolstoy adaptation War and Peace.
Joining him on Saint Marie will be Wadia as new character called Anna, who it is implied could have a relationship with series lead D.I. Jack Mooney (Ardal O’Hanlon). A tweet announcing her role suggests that their meeting could lead to “new things on the horizon,” particularly notable given that this is O’Hanlon’s last series of the show.
Wadia became a well-known face on British television after her six year stint on Eastenders, where she played Post Office owner Zainab Masood. She has since appeared on Holby City and has a regular role on David Jason comedy series Still Open All Hours.
Inside No.9’s Pemberton has also joined the cast, and said signing up was a no-brainer as he got to work with his “old pal Ralf”.
“Death in Paradise is such a well-loved and established show and it was a pleasure to be part of series nine,” he said. “The cast and crew were brilliant and with the bonus of filming in Guadeloupe with my old pal Ralf, it was an opportunity that I couldn’t miss.”
Other names include Javone Prince (PhoneShop), Jade Anouka (Cleaning Up), Alexander Vlahos (Versailles), Nell Hudson (Victoria), Samuel West (Mr Selfridge) and Samantha Bond (Downton Abbey).
The series will see the DI attempting to uncover a mysterious masked attacker who strikes twice at a family rum distillery as well as investigating a survival camp trip that goes wrong.
A 10th series has already been ordered by the BBC, so fans of the tropical crime drama have plenty to look forward to.
Death in Paradise is set to return to screens in 2020