Poldark – What’s in store for Series 4… and beyond?

As the third series comes to an end, there is little sign of slowing down for this new cult BBC classic.  But what could possibly be in store for Poldark in a fourth series and beyond?  We share a few educated thoughts (without spoilers) about the prospect of further series.


​It’s official!  Mammoth Screen (the Poldark production company) have confirmed a fourth series of Poldark will start filming in September 2017.

On the right is the tweet that confirms the news.

But what next for our tricorned Cornishman?

Last year, when star Aidan Turner spoke to press he certainly seemed optimistic;

“You never know how long TV shows are going to last these days… the standard on Poldark is so high and you need to keep it high, but if it continues to be where it’s at, I can’t see a reason why we wouldn’t continue.”

The third series has neatly carried us through books 5 and 6 (The Black Moon and The Four Swans), so out of the 12 total original books, there is still plenty of future material, right?

Unfortunately, it’s not so simple.  The next series will be based on the 7th book (The Angry Tide) – that’s just one book for the whole series (unlike the previous series that have covered more). 

However, after that point, all bets are off.  In a recent interview with WWD, Aidan teased us by saying “Four was green-lit, five hasn’t been yet, and it wouldn’t be fair of me to green light it, but it’s probably looking like it may happen.” (Link to the interview)

The final 5 books in the series take place in a different time period, more than a decade after events from the previous books.  Consequently, although most of the main characters we’ve grown to love are still around, they are older and are not the focus of most of the narratives. 

Series 2 and 3 have been populating the series with baby characters, so there would be plenty of familiar names at least.

As Aidan Turner himself put it; “There’s a big time jump between two of the books and Ross gets older – and I can’t pull off mid-50s – so I don’t know what will happen!”

However, more recently he said I think we run out of things to do after series 5, I think that would be our last one.”

So it sounds as if there may well be a Series 5 – in which case, they seem to have 3 options:
Firstly, as Aidan has hinted, maybe the same actors will return with a few layers of make-up and a few grey wigs, and bring in some new adult actors to play the characters who are currently just children.  For example, we could expect to see a lot more of Jeremy Poldark.
Secondly, doubtless an unpopular choice, perhaps they will recast the characters we know using some of the excellent array of older actors available.  This seems a little unlikely – from recent interviews, it looks as if Aidan Turner will be tied in to a fifth series if it happens.  However, his Poldark character does receive less attention as the series continues, so for how long can the series retain a name like Aidan Turner?

An Older Poldark?

Thirdly, the wildcard option;  it’s possible that another series will part ways with the original literature.  The fan-base now heavily identifies with the current line-up, so producers may think it wiser to develop brand new storylines with the existing cast, providing they can get permission from the literary estate of Winston Graham.  This isn’t uncommon – for example, the BBC’s The Night Manager was based on a single John Le Carre novel, but due to its popularity is coming back for a new and original second series.
The third series of Poldark has already shown us that it can change the source material, killing off some key characters unexpectedly while building originally fairly insignificant parts, so it may be happy to plough its own furrow.
 Who knows?  Perhaps even the producers aren’t yet sure.  We’d love to know your thoughts on what the future will hold.

​For the time being we shall just have to content ourselves with the prospect of one more guaranteed series.