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Axed BBC detective drama 'Ripper Street' rescued through deal with Amazon

FILE - In this undated publicity file photo released by BBC shows, actor Matthew Macfadyen stars as Detective Inspector Edmund Reid, in a scene from

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FILE - In this undated publicity file photo released by BBC shows, actor Matthew Macfadyen stars as Detective Inspector Edmund Reid, in a scene from "Ripper Street" on BBC America. The Victorian detective drama was canceled by the BBC earlier this year after two seasons because of poor ratings. But after an online campaign by fans, it is returning for a third series through a deal between the British broadcaster and online retailer Amazon. (AP Photo/BBC, Tiger Aspect, Jonathan Hession, File)

LONDON - "Ripper Street" has been rescued.

The Victorian detective drama was cancelled by the BBC earlier this year after two seasons because of poor ratings. But after an online campaign by fans, producers announced Wednesday that it will return for a third series through a deal between the British broadcaster and online retailer Amazon.

Filming begins in May on the new series, which will be shown first on Amazon's Prime Instant Video service, before airing on BBC television.

Matthew Macfadyen and Jerome Flynn return as 19th-century police fighting crime in the sordid streets of London's East End in the years after the notorious Jack the Ripper murders.

Amazon's move into TV production follows the model of video streaming service Netflix, which produced the hit political thriller "House of Cards." Netflix also revived comedy "Arrested Development" after it was cancelled by network Fox.

BBC drama boss Ben Stephenson said the Amazon deal was "an exceptional opportunity" to bring the show back that would please fans while freeing up BBC money for new drama series.

"Ripper Street" writer Richard Warlow said the partnership between the BBC and Amazon would allow him "to make the show that I always imagined from the very beginning — with slightly more bells and whistles, actually."

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