The stars of Gentleman Jack have opened up about the series’ cancellation in heartfelt statements.
Since its debut in 2019, the show has become an instant classic amongst LGBTQ+ viewers and critics due to its queer storylines and outstanding acting performances.
The show, which is based on the diaries of LGBTQ+ icon Anne Lister, follows the historical figure (Suranne Jones) and her romantic relationship with Ann Walker (Sophie Rundle).
However, despite receiving critical acclaim for its two seasons, HBO announced its cancellation on 7 July.
“HBO will not be moving forward with a third season of Gentleman Jack,” the network told Deadline.
“When we began this journey more than five years ago, we knew the series’ creator Sally Wainwright had a uniquely compelling vision, and it’s been tremendously gratifying to see how Anne Lister’s journey has resonated with viewers.
“We are incredibly grateful to Sally, to the impeccable Suranne Jones and Sophie Rundle, and to the entire cast and crew for bringing Anne and Ann’s story to life.”
Shortly after the news was announced, Jones and Rundle took to social media and expressed their disappointment in the show’s cancellation.
“While it is sad news Gentleman Jack will not be renewed, this show has brought so many together, enabled people to share their stories, brought joy, emotion and creativity and gave me a real connection to you as its audience,” Jones wrote in a lengthy Instagram post.
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Jones went on to highlight the recent recognition Anne Lister has received – including her statue in Piece Hall, her blue plaque in Holy Trinity churchyard and the college named after her at the University of York.
“I have never been involved in a show that has made such a huge impact and touched my heart like this one has. It wasn’t always the easiest job I’ve had… but it was always worth it to see the response it got. THANK YOU for all your support. Thank you to Sally Wainwright for bringing us this amazing story and passion.”
Rundle echoed similar sentiments in her own Instagram post, writing: “What a privilege it has been to play Ann Walker and bring her and Anne Lister’s extraordinary love story back to life. I am so proud to have been a part of reclaiming their place in history.
“And I will be forever grateful to have been allowed to spend time in the eye-wateringly talented orbits of Sally and Suranne, and the incredible team of people who brought this story to your screens.”
Even though HBO cancelled the show, there still may be hope for a third season on the BBC – which co-produced the first two seasons.
In an interview with Metro, a BBC spokesperson revealed that a new season on the network is being discussed.
“We are tremendously proud of Gentleman Jack, a show which has made a huge cultural impact, and we are in discussions with Sally about what’s next.”
You can watch the first two seasons of Gentleman Jack on HBO and BBC iPlayer.