• Fri. Dec 9th, 2022

Shetland confirm Douglas Henshalls replacement as Ashley Jensen

Nov 23, 2022

Shetland: Douglas Henshall on show's future after his exit

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Ever since the final episode of Shetland wrapped up, BBC fans have been sharing their thoughts about who could replace Douglas Henshall as the lead detective Jimmy Henshall. However, BBC bosses have now confirmed Douglas will be replaced by female detective Ashley Jensen, who will play the role of DI Ruth Calder.

Ashley, who will be a familiar face to viewers, has starred in the likes of American comedy Ugly Betty and After Life with Ricky Gervais.

Ruth will join DS Alison ‘Tosh’ McIntosh (played by Alison O’Donnell) for its next series in 2023.

The new detective will arrive as a native Shetlander who returns to the isles after 20 years working for the Met in London.

Originally based on award-winning novels by crime writer Ann Cleeves, the next series of Shetland will see Ashley join series regulars Sandy (Steven Robertson), Billy (Lewis Howden) and Cora (Anne Kidd).

Speaking about her new role, Ashley began: “I am absolutely thrilled to be joining Shetland as DI Ruth Calder.

“It’s such a hugely successful show and I am aware I have very big boots to fill since the departure of DI Perez, who was very much loved by fans of the show.

“There will be a different dynamic with Ruth amongst the regular characters and a few more new interesting characters to enjoy.

“However the integrity of the show and the world that has been created will remain very much in the same tone as the last seven seasons.

“It’s a real privilege to be asked to lead this show into a new chapter. I can’t wait to be working in Scotland again. I have missed it!”

Gaynor Holmes, Commissioning Editor for the BBC, said: “I am absolutely delighted that Ashley is joining the stellar cast of Shetland.

“Ashley is an immensely accomplished and well-loved actress who is known internationally and we can’t wait to welcome her into the Shetland family when filming begins in the spring.”

“We’re so thrilled that Ashley is going to be leading this new series of Shetland, alongside Alison O’Donnell as Tosh,” Kate Bartlett, executive producer for Silverprint Pictures added.

“They will be an exciting duo in Paul Logue’s compelling new version. It is wonderful to have the opportunity to make another series with such incredible Scottish talent.”

In a recent TV interview, Douglas also opened up about his replacement and whether he would ever return to the show.

When asked by Alison Hammond and Dermot O’Leary about whether he would like to see Tosh replace Jimmy, Douglas nodded in agreement.

“Yeah, I mean, that’s what I would like to see,” he told the hosts. “I don’t know if it will happen or not, but that would be my preference.”

“Do you feel protective over it now?” Alison asked. “If you know it’s going to carry on without you, do you feel protective over how they’re going to do it?”

“Well, I don’t know to be honest,” Douglas replied. “I try not to think about it too much.

“I think, well, I love what we all did together, and I’m very happy with that.

“I mean, it’s going to be a different show now. So, I mean, I wish them all every success, but I don’t know that I’ll be able to watch it.”

Shetland expected to return to BBC One in 2023.

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