‘Moonflower Murders’ preview: ‘Magpie Murders’ returns for new season

We’ve got some more details on the follow-up series to Magpie Murders!

The crime drama premiered in the UK on BritBox last February, adapted by Foyle’s War creator Anthony Horowitz from his acclaimed 2016 novel.

Magpie Murders then became a huge hit in the US too when it finally debuted on PBS in October 2022 and was watched by 5.5 million viewers.

The show aired as part of Masterpiece’s Sunday night crime line-up, alongside Nicola Walker’s Annika and the return of Miss Scarlet and the Duke.

Watch the trailer here:

There had been some doubts over the show’s future due to the hectic schedule of star Lesley Manville – she’s been very busy filming the final season of The Crown and the second season of World on Fire!

Luckily, the producers of Magpie Murders have persuaded Manville to fit in time to reprise her role as editor turned sleuth Susan Ryeland.

It was announced in January that an adaptation of Moonflower Murders, Anthony Horowitz’s 2020 follow-up to his Magpie Murders novel, had been commissioned by the BBC and PBS.

Eleventh Hour Films boss Jill Green revealed: “We had the best reviews ever for an Eleventh Hour Films drama, which was hugely satisfying given the creative attention given over to every aspect of the series, by every member of cast and crew.

“So, it is wonderful to be all returning again with the equally complicated and riveting Moonflower Murders.”

The second novel in Horowitz’s Susan Ryeland series, Moonflower Murders picks up where Magpie Murders left off.

We find that Susan has left the cut-throat world of publishing and is living in Crete with her longtime boyfriend, Andreas.

However, she soon ends up returning to London when she is asked to investigate a mystery relating to Alan Conway, the author of the best-selling Atticus Pünd mysteries, whose death changed her life in Magpie Murders.

The six-part adaptation is set to begin filming later this year, with Atticus Pünd actor Timothy McMullan returning alongside Lesley Manville.

Screenwriter and author Anthony Horowitz said: “I can’t wait to get started on the scripts of Moonflower Murders. We had a fantastic response to Magpie Murders and, speaking personally, it was a joy bringing Susan Ryeland and Atticus Pünd to life on the screen.”

He teased: “There are lots of surprises in the second book, including something I’ve never done before in a murder mystery. It’s going to be great fun.”

Executive producer Susanne Simpson added: “We’re delighted to partner with Eleventh Hour Films on another ingenious mystery from Anthony Horowitz. Magpie Murders was a hit with our audience, who loved its clever storytelling of a mystery-within-a-mystery.”

Moonflower Murders will premiere in 2024 on the BBC in the UK, and on PBS in the US as part of their Masterpiece Mystery strand.

Having previously only been available in the UK on BritBoxMagpie Murders is set to air on BBC One and stream on BBC iPlayer very soon.

“I’m very happy that Magpie Murders is going to be shown on BBC – its natural home,” said creator Anthony Horowitz.

In the meantime, the makers of Magpie Murders will start shooting a new version of Rebus in Edinburgh in April!

Based on Sir Ian Rankin’s series of crime novels, the six-part crime drama revealed its new Inspector Rebus actor last week, and Outlander fans will be very happy with the casting choice.

Anthony Horowitz’s Magpie Murders novel is available on Amazon.