Deadline understands that conversations are taking place between the Paramount UK network and the producers of Ross Kemp: 72 Hours In … following an incident, as they try to revive the show. The crew was just about to head out on the next leg of filming, which would have taken them close to Christmas, and had been preparing to journey to Colombia before filming was paused, it is understood.
A spokeswoman for Channel 5 said: “Filming had begun on the series, but due to unforeseen production challenges, we have made the practical decision to halt filming at the moment.”
Produced by Kemp’s Freshwater Films and Vardy v Rooney: A Courtroom Drama indie Chalkboard TV, the eight-part series, which was unveiled over the summer, follows the daredevil former EastEnders star as he “goes behind bars in some of the world’s most high-security, high-risk prisons housing gang leaders, serial killers, violent criminals, drug lords and mass murderers,” according to the logline.
At time of commission, Kemp said he would be going “even further than before” by fully immersing himself in the prisons for his first Channel 5 project.
The actor and On Gangs presenter has made his name in recent years helming shows including Ross Kemp Behind Bars and Ross Kemp & the Armed Police, mostly for ITV. Along with 72 Hours In…, he also landed his first Channel 5 drama this year, police thriller Blindspot, a return to acting after 15 years.
The Channel 5 project is Kemp’s second botched series of the past year. Following the OceanGate sub disaster in June, his agent told press that he had planned to to make a show in which he travelled to the wreck of the Titanic in the sub – before rejecting it as “unsafe.” He has also made shipwreck shows for A+E Networks UK.