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Being in Oxford is a joy, says new Morse
ENDEAVOUR star Shaun Evans is hoping the show will prove a hit with viewers when it returns tomorrow.
The detective drama – a prequel to Inspector Morse – airs on ITV1 and features scenes shot on the roof of Trinity College and in Oxford streets.
The drama, set in 1965, follows the police detective in his early career.
Its pilot attracted 6.5m viewers on ITV1 in January 2012 and that popularity saw four new episodes commissioned, which were filmed in the city at the end of last year.
Ahead of the broadcast, Liverpudlian actor Mr Evans spoke of his love for Oxford and said: “I am excited, I think they are good stories.
“I love Oxford. I think it’s a good place, it was a joy to be there.
“People are always so accommodating so I am really grateful we could find time there.
“It is unusual to get access to the colleges. I’ve been before as a visitor and tourist. I think it’s a great city.”
Mr Evans added: “We did a lot in all of the different colleges, it is hard to pick one highlight.
“But there are a few scenes on the roof of the Trinity College and that was beautiful.”
But he kept schtum about exactly what happened on the roof and said: “It is the climax of that particular story.”
On whether another series will be commissioned, Mr Evans said: “I’m really pleased with the story that we’ve got and I’m really pleased with the evolution so far, so who knows.”
About 80 crew and 20 cast and extras descended on Oxford when they shot the second episode at the end of October.
Crews also filmed along Catte Street and filmed a scene involving a black Jaguar in Merton Street and eagle-eyed passers-by spotted a dramatic stunt scene being filmed on the roof of Trinity College.
Of the first episode, Mr Evans added: “The main story is about this girl who child has been taken from a very wealthy family in Oxford.
“I tell you, Oxford is a dangerous place.”
Inspector Morse creator Colin Dexter, who helped the producers with the development of the episodes, is predicting big things for the new series and its star.
The crime writer told the Oxford Mail: “I think it will be very successful because we spend a lot of time on it.
“Shaun Evans is going to be in my opinion a big star on the TV. I think he’s an excellent choice.
“He is a first class act.”
Detective dramas Inspector Morse and Lewis were also filmed in Oxford and have attracted fans to the city.
Jo Butler, Visit Oxfordshire’s head of tourism and marketing, said: “In terms of Morse and Lewis, particularly Morse, we have seen such an interest in them.
“We have brought in new product ranges in our retail office for Inspector Morse and we run tours for Inspector Morse.
“So we can see Endeavour will have an impact and will hopefully see a resurgence of Morse fans coming to Oxford as well.”
- The first episode is on ITV1 tomorrow at 8pm.
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