Popular BBC drama Death in Paradise is to once again see a change of lead with the news that Ardal O’Hanlon is bowing out of the series.

The Beeb are staying tight-lipped on his sleuth alter-ego D.I Jack Mooney will leave the show, but have noted that it will play out in the forthcoming ninth series.

Replacing Kris Marshall’s DI Humphrey Goodman at the fore of the drama, Mooney first appeared when the Carribean police team pursued a lead to London. They took him back to the island of Saint Marie (Guadeloupe in actuality) with them where he has to date solved 20 fictional murders.

“It’s time to move on and explore other opportunities – preferably nearer the Arctic Circle. I’m confident that Death In Paradise will go from strength to strength and viewers will share my enthusiasm for Jack’s successor!” – Ardal O’Hanlon

The programme’s Executive Producer Tim Key paid tribute to Ardal, noting that working with him had disproved the adage ‘never meet your heroes’ adding that he is a ‘fantastic actor and a lovely man’. Ardal, stand-up comedian and actor is best known for his comedy roles in Channel 4’s Father Ted and BBC One’s My Hero.

The ninth series of DIP will air on BBC One from January 2020. The Beeb have already commissioned a tenth series of the high-rating Red Planet Pictures production.

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