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Gentleman Jack creator says BBC "up for" renewing show but needs new partner

BAFTA-winning writer Sally Wainwright has spoken about her "surprise" at HBO's decision to cancel Gentleman Jack.

Sally Wainwright on Gentleman Jack
BBC
Published: Wednesday, 13th July 2022 at 3:27 pm
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Gentleman Jack creator Sally Wainwright has revealed that the BBC "certainly [is] up for" continuing with the show, but would need a new streaming partner after HBO recently cancelled the period drama.

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Last week, HBO announced that it would not be moving forward with Gentleman Jack – which is a co-production between the American channel and the BBC – while the BBC said that it was "in discussions" with Wainwright about "what's next".

In an exclusive interview with RadioTimes.com, the writer said that HBO's decision to cancel Gentleman Jack was "a surprise" – however, the BBC is wanting to continue with the show.

Sally Wainwright with Gentleman Jack stars Suranne Jones and Sophie Rundle.
Sally Wainwright with Gentleman Jack stars Suranne Jones and Sophie Rundle Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images

"Well, I think we all are [gutted]. It's been a bit of a surprise really because it's been doing really well, certainly in this country. We were ready to go again, the BBC certainly [is] up for going again."

She continued: "I think if HBO had been up for it, there'd have been no question. It's been a very successful show in all areas for them – it's had fantastic reviews, it's had a very respectable audience and on top of that it's had an impact on the community of gay women. We have the most extraordinary fanbase, they organise all sorts of events."

When asked whether there's a chance the BBC could continue on with it as a solo production, Wainwright said: "I think [it] wouldn't want to continue with it without it having the same production values.

"So we would need to find another partner who would stream it globally. You know, I think all those other options are being explored at the minute given that there is a desire to go on with it amongst quite a lot of people – the BBC, Lookout Point, myself, you know."

Gentleman Jack stars Suranne Jones as the titular Anne Lister, a real-life landowner who lived in 1830s Yorkshire and kept a diary which documented her various lesbian relationships.

Rosie Cavaliero, who plays Elizabeth Cordingley, told RadioTimes.com at the South Bank Sky Arts Awards in an exclusive interview that she was "really surprised" by HBO's decision to cancel, adding that it was "the last thing [she] thought would happen".

Looking for something else to watch? Take a look at the rest of our Drama coverage or check out our TV Guide to find out what's on tonight.

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