Following strong ratings for the show’s first season, Channel 5 has sealed a deal with FremantleMedia International to acquire the exclusive first run UK broadcast rights to the upcoming second season of Wentworth Prison (known simply as Wentworth in its native Australia), which was ordered by Foxtel’s SoHo channel earlier this year.
A reboot of Australian drama series Prisoner Cell Block H, Wentworth Prison is set in the violent dangerous environment of the Wentworth Correctional Centre and follows struggles with inmates and provides insights into their fractious personal lives. The series is produced by FremantleMedia Australia and stars Shareena Clanton, Celia Ireland, Kate Atkinson, Robbie Magasiva, Aaron Jeffery, Catherine McClements, Kris McQuade, Danielle Cormack and Nicole Da Silva.
The pick up of the show’s second season comes as season one is still airing on Channel 5. The series, titled Wentworth Prison for the UK market, premiered on Channel 5 to a consolidated audience of 2.4 million viewers and a 13% share, almost doubling the Wednesday night 10pm slot average of 1.3 million viewers/7% share.
“The drama has proved a great success with our viewers”, said Katie Keenan, Channel 5’s Head of Acquisitions. “We’re very proud to bring the women of Wentworth Prison back to Channel 5 later next year.”
While Justin Hatfield, FremantleMedia International’s Senior Vice-President of Sales for the UK, Eire & Scandinavia, added: “Following in the footsteps of the Australian premiere where it has become the most watched non-sports programme in subscription television history, Wentworth Prison has equally engaged and gripped UK audiences. In the light of the continuing success of the first season, I’m delighted that Channel 5 is rewarding its loyal audience with the second season – which threatens to be even more gritty than the first.”