The BBC had a run of hit programming during the 2021-2022 TV season, with Vigil, The Tourist, Time, and The Responder all received as critical darlings with high viewer ratings. All four were renewed in a batch drop announcement in May 2022, despite both Time and The Tourist being designed to be one-and-done limited series. In the case of Time, the BBC announced it would expand the show’s brief into an anthology series to continue the program. The Tourist’s Season 2 plot was not confirmed, though with the same writing team; it seemed likely to continue the story of Elliot Stanley (Jamie Dornan), who woke up after a car crash in the Outback with no memory of who he was.
It took almost a year, but in March 2023, the BBC finally confirmed that Dornan was signed on to do another season, continuing his role as the Northern Irishman desperately seeking himself before someone else finds him first. Dornan will again be joined by Danielle Macdonald (Dumplin’) as PC Helen Chambers, who helped keep Elliott alive, though not always of her own volition. The series creators, Jack and Harry Williams, have completed six new scripts, which have been approved with production moving forward, and plan to start principal photography in April 2023.
In a statement from the BBC about the approaching start of filming, the Williams brothers said, “The Tourist was unlike anything we’d written before, and we’re hugely grateful for the incredible response to series one.” The statement continues: “It’s been an exciting journey getting stuck into that world again with the quirky characters that were so loved, and seeing where we could take them next whilst continuing to deliver a tonally unique and off-beat drama.”
Season 2's synopsis promises the series will pick up directly after the events of Season 1.
Deciding that it’s finally time for Elliot to rediscover his roots following the car crash that left him with severe memory loss, the pair find themselves dragged into the dangerous whirlwind of his past life. Whilst Elliot fights with his own demons, Helen is left to pick up the pieces of a larger mystery; forcing them both to confront foes, old and new.
Dornan and Macdonald are the only cast confirmed to return at this time. Season 1's other leading lady, Shalom Brune Franklin (Great Expectations), did not make it out of the first series alive, nor did most of the rest of the cast. Of those who did, the most likely to be back is Damon Herriman as Detective Inspector Lachlan Rogers. However, with filming set to begin in a few weeks, more names are expected to follow soon.
Also of note, Season 1 of The Tourist was one of the many British series scooped up by HBO Max and then deeply under-marketed in the U.S., despite Dornan's career hitting a significant peak with Belfast right around the time of release. Since then, its parent company, Warner Media, has been acquired by Discovery Networks, which seems more interested in farming out content than loading HBO Max up with it, and the recent press announcement for The Tourist Season 2 heavily hints All3media International, which is handling international sales, is planning to shop the series elsewhere.
The Tourist Season 2 does not yet have a release date on either side of the pond.