Late last year, BBC ordered a fourth season (series) of Merlin. It looked like there would be just 10 episodes this time around but the order was increased to a regular season of 13 installments. Colin Morgan has indicated that they will start airing in the UK in the fall.
Here in the states, Syfy finished airing season three a few months ago, registering a series high of 1.87 million total viewers. The cable channel hadn’t made any official announcement about whether or not they’d be licensing the latest round of episodes — until now.
Syfy is hosting a Merlin panel at next week’s Comic-Con in San Diego. In addition to members of the cast and producers speaking, the presentation will also feature a special preview of season four. Slipped into the press release about the panel is confirmation that Syfy will be airing season four episodes some time next year.
Here are the details of the panel:
MERLIN returns to Comic-Con with advance look at enthralling 4th season
Anthony Head, Colin Morgan, Bradley James & Katie McGrath join co-creators Johnny Capps and Julian Murphy for revealing panel on Sunday, July 24
San Diego, CA – July 13, 2011 – A contingent of core cast members, armed with exclusive revelations about the highly-anticipated fourth season, lead global sensation MERLIN back to Comic-Con International for a special panel Sunday, July 24 at 1:00 p.m.
Anthony Head (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Free Agents) and Colin Morgan, who play King Uther and Merlin, respectively, and Merlin executive producers and co-creators Johnny Capps and Julian Murphy, return to San Diego with Comic-Con rookies Bradley James and Katie McGrath, who play Prince Arthur and the villainous Morgana.
The hour-long panel will include Comic-Con exclusive “first look” footage of the upcoming fourth season of MERLIN, as well as inside information from the cast and co-creators. There will be Comic-Con exclusive goodies for all fans in attendance, as well as extremely limited edition prizes awarded to some lucky audience members. Jenna Busch, host/writer for Moviefone, Screen Junkies, She Knows and more, will moderate the panel in the 2,000-seat Room 6BCF.
Currently filming their fourth season in Wales and France, the MERLIN crew recently made an appearance at Comic Con Paris, and will travel some 6,000 miles to San Diego to spend time with their American fans. In addition to the presentation, all six panellists will be present for an autograph signing from 2:30-3:30 p.m. in the Sails Pavilion. Anthony Head is particularly enthused about returning to San Diego.
“It’s such great fun to be in the midst of such a passionate crowd who celebrate the genre I’ve done in such a proportionate amount, and I really hope to see more than usual – I want to go spend time on the convention floor!” Head emphasized. “It’s an amazing gathering of fans and creators and actors, and I do love getting the chance to see so many of my friends like Seth Green, Joss (Whedon), Nathan (Fillion). Last year, Colin, Johnny and Julian and I had a wonderful experience, and I’m looking forward to seeing the impressions the Con makes on Bradley and Katie. Comic-Con is truly a fun reward for the actors and the fans alike.”
Head will also be available for autographs during a special signing Sunday from 10:00-11:00 a.m. in the BBC America booth (#3629).
MERLIN’s success and popularity continues to flourish across the globe – the series is now broadcast in 183 countries across the world. FremantleMedia Enterprises (FME) has invested in the fourth season of MERLIN alongside UK broadcaster BBC One. The show is produced and created by Shine TV and Season 4 will be broadcast in the UK this fall and in the US in early 2012. In the United States, Merlin has enjoyed solid ratings on Syfy, where its third season concluded in May 2010.
Launched in 2008, MERLIN tells the story of young Merlin in Camelot as he comes to grips with his powers and destiny. The epic fourth season of MERLIN sees Camelot on the brink of a Golden Age as the familiar blend of magic, mystery and action adventure returns. With Morgana now a dangerous outcast, Merlin must use all his power to ensure that Arthur fulfils his destiny as the once and future king.
MERLIN stars Colin Morgan as Merlin, Bradley James as Prince Arthur, Anthony Head as King Uther, Katie McGrath as Morgana, Angel Coulby as Gwen, Richard Wilson as Gaius and John Hurt as the voice of the Great Dragon. The series’ third season saw a host of high-profile guest-stars including: Emilia Fox, Tom Ellis, Miriam Margoyles, Warwick Davies and Pauline Collins. Nathaniel Parker has also been announced as guest star in season four.
FremantleMedia Enterprises holds the exclusive distribution rights (excluding UK), home entertainment and licensing rights to The Adventures of Merlin. FME has secured licensing rights to produce numerous multi-territory brand extensions including a publishing and figurines range, experiential events and consumer promotions.
What do you think? Are you looking forward to season four of Merlin? How long do you think the TV series should continue?
Image courtesy Syfy.