The opening episode of the new series of Line of Duty will be a “head-wreck” for the audience, according to Adrian Dunbar.
The Co Fermanagh actor, who plays Superintendent Ted Hastings in the BBC crime drama, tells an episode of the Graham Norton Show, to be shown tonight, that the initial instalment of the sixth series would have fans on the edge of their seats.
The action picks up a year-and-a-half after the events of the fifth season, with the anti-corruption unit AC-12 having picked up a new recruit in DC Chloe Bishop, played by Shalom Brune-Franklin.
Dunbar, who appears on the Graham Norton Show with co-star Vicky McClure, explains: “Eighteen months have passed, so the landscape has completely changed. We’re starting from a place the audience will probably find a bit shocking at first.
“Things and people have been moved around, so the first episode is going to be one of those head-wrecks for the audience.”
While McClure tells Norton that the success of the cult show has been “mad”, Dunbar adds: “It was a slow-burn. The first series was great, but we didn’t know we would get a second one.
“Then we got a second one. Halfway through that, the numbers built and since then it’s just taken off. It’s big and the anticipation is massive. It’s intense.”
McClure, who put off booking her wedding because of the pandemic, also talks about being in a bubble with her co-stars while filming in Belfast.
She says that if she could choose anyone to be holed up with, it would be Dunbar and their Line of Duty colleague Martin Compston, both of whom she describes as “like family”.
McClure and Compston also discussed the show in the latest episode of That Gaby Roslin Podcast, released last Monday.
Compston said there was a lot of corpsing (laughing while filming) on set, particularly in the “huge interview scenes”.
“There’s always a point (where) somebody says something and we’re gone,” he added.
“It takes a good 20 minutes and we just laugh it out and then get back to it.”
He told Roslin that the “righteous rants” of Adrian’s character usually set them off.
“Dunbar (once) shouted ‘There’s a herd of elephants coming for you’, (but) it wasn’t in the script,” he said.
“It came out when he was on a rant. We all tried to keep it together and then somebody went and we were all gone. It’s a release. What’s funny is people trying to hold it together. “
The Graham Norton Show is on BBC One on Friday at 10.45pm. It will also be available on the iPlayer. Line of Duty returns on March 21.