The BBC and the makers of Death in Paradise have decided to treat fans to something very exciting – by announcing a surprise Christmas special. This will be the show’s first-ever festive special, and it’ll air in December 2021 before season 11 hits our screens in January 2022.
The 90-minute episode sounds action-packed, with the return of old favourite Danny John-Jules as Officer Dwayne Myers and the promise that when it comes to Neville and Florence’s relationship cliffhanger, “all will be revealed in the Christmas special”. We’re also told that it “stretches from a grey damp drizzly London all the way to the warm sparkling beauty of idyllic Saint Marie” – so we’re intrigued to see what part of the story takes place in London, and who the story might feature on the UK side!
Death in Paradise has been going strong for a decade already, as we explored in our in-depth feature about the story of Death in Paradise and its enduring success, and this is the perfect way to finish off the 10th anniversary year.
And the future is looking bright for the BBC crime drama. Executive Producer Tim Key told RadioTimes.com that the show could “just run forever”, and that there was no danger of running out of new ideas any time soon.
But what about the next series? Here’s what we know about Death in Paradise season 11.
Death in Paradise Christmas special release date
The exact date has yet to be announced, but the Christmas special will – of course – air in December 2021.
We have exciting news… there’s a #DeathInParadise Christmas special coming your way to continue our tenth anniversary celebrations!@RalfLittle addresses some of the rumours 🕵️ pic.twitter.com/28L2GwK5xL— Death in Paradise (@deathinparadise) July 21, 2021
When is Death in Paradise season 11’s release date?
If all goes well, Death in Paradise series 11 is expected to arrive on BBC One in early January 2022.
The cameras began rolling in early June 2021 in Guadeloupe, with the production team sharing pictures of Ralf Little and new cast member Shantol Jackson holding clapperboards with the words: “We have started filming!” Production is expected to continue across the summer.
Of course, there is still the pandemic to reckon with – so delays can’t be entirely ruled out. But the team who make Death in Paradise are a pretty determined bunch. In 2020 they had to postpone filming for series 10 (planned for April), but production company Red Planet Pictures was able begin the shoot Guadeloupe several months later – working against the clock to deliver the series in time for its usual BBC One broadcast in January.
Has Death in Paradise been renewed?
Yes! In January 2021, the BBC announced that Death in Paradise had been renewed for another two series: season 11 and season 12.
Season 11 is now in production for 2022, and season 12 is set for the following year.
Death in Paradise series 11 cast: Who’s returning?
While the full Death in Paradise cast has not yet been officially confirmed for series 11, we do know a few things about who’s coming back – and who’s not.
For one thing, Ralf Little will definitely be returning as DI Neville Parker. The actor tweeted: “See you for series 11!”
Then there’s DS Florence Cassell (Joséphine Jobert), who arrived back on Saint Marie at the beginning of season 10 after an S.O.S. from Commissioner Selwyn Patterson (Don Warrington). She took up her old job with the Honoré Police, but it wasn’t immediately clear whether she would stay for good. As we reach the end of the series, though, Florence seems to have settled back in on Saint Marie – and she has now been confirmed for season 11.
Also returning are Officer Marlon Pryce (Tahj Miles), the young serial offender who joined the police a part of a rehabilitation programme at the start of series 10; Mayor Catherine Bordey (Élizabeth Bourgine), who narrowly escaped becoming a murder victim in series 10 when she was strangled in her own home – but now seems to have made a full recovery; and Commissioner Patterson (Don Warrington).
And Shantol Jackson joins the cast as Sergeant Naomi Thomas.
Has JP Hooper left Death in Paradise for good?
Yes, JP Hooper’s time in Saint Marie is up – as the character has moved to a neighbouring island to take charge of the police training programme, following on from his success in turning Trainee Officer Marlon Pryce around from a criminal troublemaker into a promising young officer.
JP was written out of the show following actor Tobi Bakare’s decision to exit Death in Paradise after seven seasons.
And in an exclusive interview with RadioTimes.com, Tobi Bakare revealed why he’s leaving Death in Paradise.
Meet JP’s replacement, played by Shantol Jackson
Commissioner Patterson needed to fill the vacancy left by Sergeant JP Hooper’s departure at the end of season 10 – and by the start of season 11, he has recruited Sergeant Naomi Thomas, played by Shantol Jackson.
The newcomer is described as an “ambitious young sergeant” and a “gifted officer” who has arrived from a neighbouring island to join the Saint Marie Police. But, as the BBC teases, “Having come from a smaller police force, will her lack of experience get the better of her?”
Jackson has previously appeared in Yardie and Sprinter, but this is her first major TV role. She said: “I’m so grateful for this amazing opportunity to join the cast of this fun-filled, entertaining series. I used to watch Death in Paradise with my dad in Jamaica years ago when it just started and to now be in the show, knowing that he’ll be watching me, it’s truly a surreal moment. Looking forward to adding to the magic!”
Guest stars for Death in Paradise Christmas special
The most exciting guest star for the Christmas episode will be Danny John-Jules, who is back as Officer Dwayne Myers for the one-off special.
Also joining the cast as guest stars are Mathew Baynton (Ghosts), Juliet Stevenson (Riviera), Stanley Townsend (Informer), Jocelyn Jee Esien (Jack & The Beanstalk: After Ever After), Anthony Calf (Poldark), Tessa Bonham Jones (The Trial of Christine Keeler), Elizabeth Tan (Emily in Paris) and Tariq Jordan (Law and Order: UK).
Death in Paradise season 11 guest stars
Guest stars for series 11 will be confirmed nearer the time. We’ll keep you updated with the latest news.
Death in Paradise season 11 plot
Here’s what we’ve been officially told: “Series 11 will see even more mysterious murders, guest stars galore, huge surprises and plenty of twists. How will Marlon cope without JP? Will Neville disclose how he really feels about Florence and how will she respond to this bombshell? If that’s not enough, could the return of familiar faces to the island cause trouble in paradise?”
Hold on… “the return of familiar faces to the island”?! That’s a phrase to spark a thousand rumours. We wondered: is this a former Detective Inspector, like DI Humphrey Goodman (Kris Marshall) or DI Jack Mooney (Ardal O’Hanlon)? Or maybe Officer Ruby Patterson (Shyko Amos) has returned from France?
Or perhaps that was an allusion to Officer Dwayne Myers (Danny John-Jules), who has since been confirmed for the Christmas special. He said: “It’s always a pleasure going back to the Caribbean. And after four years away, fitting back into the fold should be seamless as I know all the new leading cast members already. I look forward to bringing Dwayne and this tenth anniversary special script to life.”
Speaking of which, here’s the synopsis for the 90-minute Christmas episode: “As Florence (Joséphine Jobert) leaves the island to spend Christmas with her family, the team welcome Dwayne (Danny John-Jules) with open arms to help solve a murder case. Dwayne comes to realise he’s not only met Officer Marlon Pryce (Tahj Miles) before, but he once arrested him! How will the team of old and new faces come together to unravel this murderous crime?
“Meanwhile, after vexed fans were left hanging in suspense after the cliff-hanger ending of series ten earlier this year, will they finally discover whether Neville told Florence about his feelings for her? Viewers have watched Neville and Florence’s relationship develop over the course of series 10 and all will be revealed in the Christmas special with more surprises to come in series 11.”
- For the latest news and expert tips on getting the best deals this year, take a look at our Black Friday 2021 and Cyber Monday 2021 guides.
Death in Paradise cliffhanger explained
Series 10 left us on a massive cliffhanger, as DI Neville Parker (Ralf Little) tried to confess his love to DS Florence Cassell (Joséphine Jobert). Standing on her doorstep, trying to calm his nerves and summon his courage, he managed: “What I wanted to say was…” – and then the credits rolled.
Executive Producer Tim Key told Metro: “All I can tell you is when the show comes back viewers will absolutely find out what happens next, when it’s back we will let everybody know. With situations like Neville and Florence’s it’s very hard, if you get people together it can be the end of a partnership in dramatic terms, but at the same time you can’t stretch things out for too long because the audience get frustrated. We’ve got a really cool plan, we know where it’s going and the audience will be very satisfied with it, there’s a story to tell and I think we needed the time to tell it.”
He added: “We’re being a bit devilish hooking how we’ve hooked but it’s not because we don’t know where the story is going, we know exactly where it’s going and it’s really cool.”
Is there a trailer for Death in Paradise season 11?
There’s no trailer yet, but keep checking this page as we will bring you the first look at the next series as soon as it’s revealed.