The cast of Line of Duty, including Kelly McDonald

Line of Duty series six: Writer Jed Mercurio spills secrets about show’s return in 2021

We need Ted Hastings, Steve Arnott and Kate Fleming back in our lives ASAP to catch more bent coppers!

| Updated:

TV writer Jed Mercurio has given fans a much needed update on Line of Duty series six, which is set to air next year.

Appearing on Lorraine this morning (Wednesday November 18 2020), creator Jed teased viewers with a few juicy nuggets of information.

Here’s everything he said about the next series of Line of Duty.

Line Of Duty
Line of Duty has to be one of THE best TV shows of all time (Credit: BBC)

Read more: Gogglebox viewers beg Channel 4 to make Line Of Duty stars series regulars

When will Line of Duty return?

Line of Duty series six will air in early 2021 – which is NOT soon enough!

All we know is that it will air before the end of March 2021.

The sixth series of LOD was sadly affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

The cast and crew were forced to postpone filming during lockdown, so the show will air later than originally planned.

How has Covid-19 affected filming?

Speaking on Lorraine, Jed Mercurio admitted that filming during the pandemic had been “tough”.

He told the Scottish TV presenter: “It’s been pretty tough, to be honest with you.”

Thanking the “brilliant cast and crew”, he added: “We’ve been diligently and rigorously wearing masks the whole time, social distancing, sanitising any objects that pass between people, fogging spaces that we go into as well as having to take other steps such as changing scenes from interior locations to exterior locations.”

He also revealed that some of the on-location shoots were moved into the studio, so that they were able to ventilate the spaces.

He said: “We hope that these changes will be invisible to fans when they watch the series.”

Line of Duty
Stephen Graham starred in Line of Duty series five in 2019 (Credit: BBC)

Read more: Line Of Duty series six: Fans spot Steve Arnott plot ‘clue’ in new photos

Who guest stars in the new series of LOD?

Jed also teased some more details about the upcoming sixth series, and specifically about the identity of guest star Kelly Macdonald.

We know that Trainspotting actress Kelly will play a character called DCI Joanne Davidson.

But is she a bent copper?

Jed said: “Kelly plays DCI Joanne Davidson, who is the Senior Investigating Officer on a high profile murder that remains unsolved over a year after the killing.

“AC-12 get involved because there are question marks over her involvement in the investigation.”

Kelly Macdonald follows a long line of awesome actors who have previously guest starred in the show.

These include Keeley Hawes, Thandie Newton, Anna Maxwell Martin, Daniel Mays and Stephen Graham.

Ted Hasting’s famous sayings

When probed by Lorraine, Jed also revealed that Ted Hastings’ mannerisms came from Jed’s own dad!

One fan was thrilled to discover the source, tweeting: “@jed_mercurio talking @Line_of_duty on @lorraine and the source of The Gaffer’s great phrases. Now we’re sucking diesel!”

Other popular Ted sayings include “I didn’t float up the Lagan in a bubble” and “we do our duty to the letter of the law”.

And we’ve lost count of the times he’s called someone “fella” or mentioned “bent coppers”.

Jed Mercurio appears on Lorraine
Line of Duty creator Jed Mercurio appeared on Lorraine (Credit: ITV)

Will there be a second series of Bodyguard?

Showrunner Jed Mercurio revealed there was no update on a new Bodyguard series.

He explained: “We are still in discussions about that.

“We would love to do more Bodyguard but there is no news as yet.”

Bodyguard, also written and created by Jed Mercurio, aired in 2018 and starred TV faves Richard Madden and Keeley Hawes.


Lorraine airs on weekdays from 9am on ITV.

Are you looking forward to the return of Line of Duty? Leave us a comment on our Facebook page @EntertainmentDailyFix.

Helen Fear
TV Editor