Friday, 6 April 2018

THE LAST KINGDOM cancelled by the BBC but saved by Netflix

The BBC has decided not to continue with its Saxon-era historical drama The Last Kingdom, based on author Bernard Cornwell's Saxon saga which currently runs to ten novels. However, Netflix have stepped in and will continue the series, with the third season due to air later this year.


The first season of The Last Kingdom was a co-production between the BBC and BBC America, but BBC America dropped out after the first season, citing disappointing ratings in the US, although UK ratings were strong. Netflix took over as international distributor and co-funder of the series. The BBC has decided not to continue the series, so Netflix have taken over production completely.

The news does make sense, as The Last Kingdom has received good critical notices since debuting. In addition The Last Kingdom gives Netflix a toehold in the historical drama field without the monstrous price tag of some of their other shows, like The Crown and the cancelled Marco Polo. By Netflix standards, The Last Kingdom's budget is very modest and even with a moderate budget increase (which would be helpful to sell some of the bigger action scenes) it would still be one of their cheapest programmes.

Season 3 of The Last Kingdom will air before the end of 2018, with Netflix to make a decision on continuing the programme based on how it fares as a Netflix original.

Slightly paradoxically, the BBC have cited competition from Netflix and Amazon TV as reason why they can't continue production of drama programmes like The Last Kingdom, and have even advised that in the future, predicted budget shortfalls for British broadcasters may threaten shows like Doctor Who and Sherlock.

19 comments:

Silent said...

I think this show is better than Game of Thrones in some ways. Glad it's still going forward.

Anonymous said...

The Last Kingdom is a brilliant programme. Very well written, directed and acted. Much better than Game of Thrones! Looking forward to many more episodes.

Ja D said...

Great news.

Unknown said...

Cancelled? Huge mistake BBC, huge.

Joyce Summes said...

I just so happy I have been waiting for the next episode. Cant wait to see it

David said...

Love this series both in book and on TV. It's my favorite in both forms.

Anonymous said...

I was wondering what happened to this show. Glad to hear Netflix picked it up

Anonymous said...

Just got done watching season 2 and thrilled there will be season 3.....

Unknown said...

Better than Game of Thrones? Get serious.

Unknown said...

Love this show even watching series from beginning again...go Netflix for going alone on this series.

joedj said...

Glad I'm still supporting Netflix via streaming AND DVD service, allowing great series like this to be afforded/picked up! Cheers!

Unknown said...

Very sad. I've been watching every episode linking the events and pleasantly looking the beautiful places where they filmed and the first class of actors and actresses.

Unknown said...

Previews never did it justice.I passed while continuing with a lessened "Vikings"(RIP Ragnar)& the ever quickened GoT rushing to finish as fast as they can.This is a very good show,it just got unnoticed by many early on and that's always sad for the work obviously put into this by everyone involved.

Anonymous said...

Just finished watching on netflix.... not usually a fan of historical tv shows but absolutely now a fan of THIS
show...hope netfix continues to do it justice...go netflix!!

Unknown said...

Nice series, but for some to say it's better than GoT, then they must be dreaming. It's not even as good as Vikings. But I'm glad it will get a third season, beyond that I doubt it will go to a fourth.

Unknown said...

I love the last kingdom it is so much better than game of thrones

Anonymous said...

I'm so looking forward to this! Go on Uthred!

Anonymous said...

For big broadcasting companies like BBC, I have to wonder at their total lack of VISION. I am in the Cayman Islands and cannot wait for this series to return. Cancel it? Really? Well, between Lucifer and The Last Kingdom, Netflix will get my money. Hope it has Harlots too!

noggy said...

So y is bbc tv licence still expensive if there saying this. Stop paying starts too much and stop reality rubbish. Tlk is a superb show more interesting than vikings