Neil Cross, the creator of the acclaimed BBC series Luther, starring Idris Elba, has announced plans for a big-screen movie version following the success of the show's third season.

LutherIdris Elba as DCI John Luther

"I've written the script and we hope to get the film made next year," he told the Edinburgh Television Festival. "Idris is a brilliant leading man and we've hoped to turn Luther into a movie for a long time. It will follow his career in the earlier days, when he is still married to Zoe, and the final scene in the film is the first of the initial TV series."

Cross is likely to have been buoyed by the success of The Inbetweeners and Alan Partridge movies in recent years. Although both represent totally different genres from his gritty crime-drama, they show that British audiences are willing to stump up at the box-office to see continuations of their favourite TV shows.

A prequel certainly seems like a good idea, and should see Warren Brown return as DS Ripley, who was dramatically killed off in season three. 

Idris Elba LutherIdris Elba Is Returning as John Luther in a Movie

The show followed the fortunes of Detective Chief Inspector John Luther, a dedicated police officer who demonstrates an obsessive and often dangerous method of bringing criminals to justice. 

Cross told the Edinburgh International Television Festival that the TV show finished because Elba is now an established movie star. He is actually the bookmakers' favorite to win best actor at the Oscars for his portrayal of Nelson Mandela in the biopic Long Walk to Freedom.

Earlier this year, at the BAFTA preview for the third season of Luther, Elba said he wanted to make a Luther film. "We do want a new audience, but we also want to keep the fans interested, so we have to tread very carefully," he said.

The 40-year-old won a Golden Globe for best actor in a mini-series for Luther, which made its debut on BBC One in 2011.

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