Rebecca Gibney in ‘Halifax f.p.’

Rebecca Gibney will return to the Nine Network next year as forensic psychiatrist Jane Halifax in the miniseries Halifax: Retribution, which looks at the character 20 years after the original series.

Roger Simpson, who created and was the lead writer on Halifax f.p., which ran for seven seasons and ended in 2002, returns as writer and producer, together with writers Mac Gudgeon and Jan Sardi, who both worked on the series.

Produced by Beyond Lonehand, a JV between Beyond and Simpson, with Mikael Borglund as executive producer, the new version will see Halifax hunting for a killer who is terrorising an entire city, potentially putting herself and her family in danger. Beyond Distribution has the worldwide sales rights outside Australia/NZ.

“I’ve had people asking me for years if we could bring Jane Halifax back,” Gibney told 9Honey Celebrity. “I loved the character – Roger Simpson created her especially for me, so I’ve often wondered whether we would bring her back or not.”

Simpson came up with the concept, they met last year and earlier this year he wrote a treatment, devised plot lines and started writing episodes.

“It’s a fantastic idea so I couldn’t say no,” she said. “The chance to re-team with Roger is such a wonderful opportunity. He’s one of the best producers Australia’s ever produced. So I’m just really excited about re-teaming with him.”

Simpson has said the original series of telemovies sprang from his desire to create a crime show where the central character didn’t use guns so the protagonist solved crimes by psychologically sleuthing her way to the truth.

They featured stellar names including Hugh Jackman, Jacqueline McKenzie, Richard Roxburgh, Hugo Weaving, Guy Pearce, Essie Davis, Deborra-lee Furness, Frances O’Connor and Ben Mendelsohn.

Gibney, who starred in and co-produced Wanted for the Seven Network, said she hopes some will be lured back for the miniseries.

Michael Healy, Nine’s director of TV, said: “We are delighted to welcome Rebecca back to Nine. She is a legend of Australian television and we are honoured that she will bring back one of Australia’s most iconic characters in the exciting new chapter of this renowned franchise.”

The revival is another back-to-the-future move by Nine, which has commissioned ITV Studios Australia and Every Cloud Productions to make eight episodes of SeaChange, updating the show created by Andrew Knight and Deborah Cox for the ABC.

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