'Mars' Sequel Lifts Off at BBC
Action shifts to '80s in 'Ashes to Ashes'
The British broadcaster has ordered a show called "Ashes to Ashes," which will follow DCI Gene Hunt (Philip Glenister) and his shoot-first, ask-questions-if-we-get-around-to-it style of law enforcement from the 1970s to the '80s. Set in 1981, the show will find Hunt working in London with a female detective from the present day who finds herself stuck in the past.
The finale of "Life on Mars," which aired Tuesday on BBC1, resolved the question of how 21st-century cop Sam Tyler (John Simm) was transported to 1973 Manchester. Simm will not be part of the new show.
BBC America aired the first season of "Life on Mars" last summer and will have the second season later this year. Producer David E. Kelley is also working on an adaptation of the show for ABC, though casting difficulties have pushed the show back to midseason.
Jane Featherstone, an executive producer of "Life on Mars," says "Ashes to Ashes" will be "a touch of 'Moonlighting' teamed with a measure of 'Miami Vice,'" the BBC reports.
The female lead hasn't been cast yet, but filming is scheduled for this summer with an eye toward a premiere in early 2008. There's no word on whether the new show will cross the pond to BBC America.