World War Two drama World on Fire is returning to the BBC for its second season this Sunday, after the first season landed four years ago in 2019.


Despite the long wait, many of the show's original stars have returned for season 2, including Jonah Hauer-King, Lesley Manville and Blake Harrison. However, one major star who won't be back is Sean Bean.

The Game of Thrones and Lord of the Rings star played bus conductor and pacifist Douglas Bennett in the first season, but was notably absent when the cast for season 2 was announced.

Now, Julia Brown, who plays Douglas's daughter Lois, has explained what happened to Bean's character off-screen and, unfortunately, it isn't good news.

Lois Bennett (Julia Brown) in World on Fire
Lois Bennett (Julia Brown) in World on Fire. BBC/Mammoth Screen/Steffan Hill

Brown revealed: "I think it will be a massive shock for viewers to see that Douglas, the committed pacifist, is no longer with us. He was killed when their house in Manchester was hit by a bomb in the Blitz. Luckily, Lois was out working on a shift at the time, so she survived.

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"It's a horrible thing to have happened to a very peaceful man who strongly believed that the war was unjustifiable and wanted to put an end to violence - in the end, he was killed just sitting quietly at home."

This makes Douglas one of many characters that Bean has played to have died - his characters Ned Stark, Boromir, Alec Trevelyan and many more have all bit the dust, with the star saying in 2019 that he had started turning roles down because the character died.

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He told The Sun: "I’ve turned down stuff. I’ve said, 'They know my character’s going to die because I’m in it!' I just had to cut that out and start surviving, otherwise it was all a bit predictable."

The new season of World on Fire will once again tell the story of World War Two through the eyes of ordinary people, taking viewers from the war-torn streets of Britain deep into Nazi Germany, the resistance within occupied France, and the brutal sands of the North African desert.

World on Fire returns to BBC One and iPlayer on Sunday 16th July 2023. Check out more of our Drama coverage or visit our TV Guide and Streaming Guide to find out what's on.


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