File this under “that was quick.”
The morning after its sophomore return, BBC America surprised the Killing Eve stars on Monday with an early third-season renewal. The news was announced at a summit for AMC Networks (including BBC America and IFC) by group president Sarah Barnett.
In keeping with its new tradition of handing off the showrunner reins to a new female writing voice, British writer Suzanne Heathcote (Fear the Walking Dead) will take over for Emerald Fennell, who in turn took over for creator Phoebe Waller-Bridge.
“I’m very excited that the Killing Eve baton is being passed onto another incredible writer for season three. We can sleep soundly knowing these characters are safe in Suzanne Heathcote’s hilariously murderous hands,” said Waller-Bridge.
Executive producers on season three include Sally Woodward Gentle (who served as co-showrunner on season two), Lee Morris, Waller-Bridge, Gina Mingacci, Damon Thomas and Emmy-winning star Sandra Oh. Jeff Melvoin (Designated Survivor, Alias) also joins the team as executive producer for season three. Fiona Shaw co-stars.
“We love having this show and the brilliant Sandra Oh, Jodie Comer and Fiona Shaw on our networks,” said Barnett. “Phoebe Waller-Bridge and Emerald Fennell have delivered two addictively entertaining seasons. As we did last year, we’re renewing Killing Eve right out of the gate, now with Suzanne Heathcote as lead writer, as a sign of confidence — we adore this show as much as our fans do. Killing Eve doesn’t do anything in a templated way; we love giving opportunity to three genius women to make their mark.”
Season one bucked the downward ratings trend and rose week to week — a rarity in the era of DVR and streaming. The series, which stars Oh and Jodie Comer as an MI6 operative and psychopath assassin, respectively, wrapped with weekly ratings growth in both the adults 25-54 and 18-49 demos — a feat no other series has done since Nielsen launched the live-plus-3 ratings measurement. Season two returned Sunday and was simulcast on both BBC America and the wider-reaching AMC in a bid to bring more viewers to the critical darling drama from Sid Gentle Films and distributed by Endeavor Content.
“It’s been such an exciting year for me on Killing Eve. I think it’s cool that this tradition has been built into this untraditional show. Inheriting some of Phoebe’s characters was a treat — I can’t wait to see what Suzanne does next,” Fennell said.
Added Woodward Gentle: “We are overjoyed at this show of love and passion for the show. And delighted to have another fierce woman at the writing helm. We have been so lucky.”
Heathcote is repped by ICM Partners, Circle of Confusion and Jackoway Austen.