Christopher Eccleston, Billy Jenkins Return for Three ‘Dodger’ Specials

“Dodger,” the high-octane family drama based on Charles Dickens’ “Oliver Twist,” is set to return to the BBC for three specials.

Production has just wrapped in Bristol on the three one-off episodes, which include a Christmas-themed offering, with Christopher Eccleston (“Doctor Who”) returning as Fagin and Billy Jenkins (“Peaky Blinders”) returning as the eponymous child pickpocket.

Also returning for high jinks in Victorian London are Ellie-May Sheridan (“Call The Midwife”), Aabay Ali, Connor Curren, Mila Lieu, David Threlfall (“Shameless”), Alex Kingston (“Doctor Who”), Rhys Thomas (“The Fast Show”), Javone Prince (“No Time To Die”), Lucy Montgomery (“Disenchantment”), Saira Choudhry (“Life”), James Fleet (“Vicar of Dibley”), Lenny Rush (“A Christmas Carol”) and Sam C Wilson (“Hanna”).

They are joined by newcomers to the series Anita Dobson (“EastEnders”), Robert Lindsay (“My Family”), Mark Benton (“Waterloo Road”), Rufus Jones (“Home”), Matthew Holness (“Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace”) and Jane Horrocks (“Absolutely Fabulous”).

“Dodger” will air on CBBC and iPlayer in the U.K. It is produced by Universal International Studios, a division of Universal Studio Group.

Rhys Thomas and Lucy Montgomery have written the specials, which Thomas will also direct. Amy Buscombe commissioned them for CBBC.

“We are thrilled to be back for three exciting specials and even more thrilled to assemble such an amazing cast,” said Thomas and Montgomery. “We had great fun taking these characters on more adventures and we thank the BBC for giving us the platform to do so.”

Buscombe, commissioning editor for BBC Children’s said: “We’re delighted that ‘Dodger’s’ first outing was enjoyed by so many children and their families, and can’t wait to see what rip-roaring adventures Dodger and the gang have in store for us next!”

Mark Freeland, executive producer for Universal International Studios, added: “It’s so great to see the rag-tag ‘Dodger’ gang back so soon for three specials on the BBC. We’re aiming to give families some really thrilling, feel-good and downright funny entertainment.”

Freeland exec produced for Universal International Studios. Rhys Thomas and Lucy Montgomery also serve as executive producers, with Marcus Collier as producer. NBCUniversal global distribution is repping global sales.

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