Rebus | BBC adaptation to premiere on 18th May

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The BBC adaptation of Ian Rankin’s Rebus will premiere on the 18th May, with Richard Rankin (no relation) in the lead role.

A new adaptation of Ian Rankin’s detective novels, Rebus, is set to air later this month. Gregory Burke, who previously wrote Scottish drama Six Four, wrote all six episodes, which were directed by Niall MacCormick and Fiona Walton.

The new series of Rebus will be a prequel which focuses on the detective in his younger years, as he rises up the ranks in Edinburgh.

Richard Rankin (no relation to author Ian) stars as Rebus, alongside Lucie Shorthouse, Brian Ferguson, Amy Manson, Neshla Caplan, Noof Ousellam, Stuart Bowman, Caroline Lee Johnson, Sean Buchanan, Thoren Ferguson and Michelle Duncan.

The synopsis reads as follows:

Set in Edinburgh, the six-part series reimagines John Rebus as a younger Detective Sergeant drawn into a violent criminal conflict that turns personal when his brother Michael, a former soldier, crosses the line into criminality. Rebus finds himself torn between protecting his brother and enforcing the law to bring Michael to justice. This epic series explores family, morality and class through an emotionally-charged story, set against the Scottish landmarks that Rankin’s readers know so well. Filming took place in Glasgow and Edinburgh last year.

Rebus is one of the most successful characters in contemporary fiction. Appearing in over 24 novels since 1987, with the 25th, Midnight & Blue, set to be published in October (and he’s featured in over a dozen short stories), Rankin’s dour detective has made an indelible impression on readers the world over.

It wasn’t long before he made his way to the screen. The first iteration starred John Hannah, who played the role for one series in 2000 to 2001. Hannah failed to win over fans of the books, and he quit the role soon after.

For three series, Ken Stott stepped into the role of the detective. His portrayal was extremely popular, and he became inextricably linked with the role, so much so it has taken well over a decade for a new version to be made.

Rebus will premiere on BBC One on the 18th May, with all six episodes also available to stream on iPlayer.

You can see photographs of the new series here.

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