Underbelly: articles

Nine to produce new series of Underbelly

THE Nine Network is understood to have approved a new series of Underbelly, its smash hit TV show which reveals the graphic details of Melbourne's gangland wars.

Underbelly star Les Hill announced the approval of a new series to a packed Logies TV awards audience in Melbourne last night.

Hill, who played slain gangster Jason Moran, told the crowd that Nine CEO David Gyngell had given the green light for a new batch of Underbelly programs.

In photos: Take a look at how the actors in Underbelly compare to the real thing

Ironically, many of the stars in the Melbourne audience have not even seen an episode of the hottest Australian program in years - the series remains banned in Victoria while court actions related to the gangland battles continue.

The 13-part Underbelly covers the Melbourne gangland wars between 1994 and 2004.

The program's finale is on Sydney TV on Wednesday night and the release of an Underbelly DVD set - being promoted as containing scenes too hot for the television program - is expected to go close to being the biggest selling TV DVD in Australian history.

Pre-sales of the DVD have been estimated as much as 60,000.

Details of what could be involved in a new Underbelly series remain unclear today.

But it is believed a new series could be essentially a prequel, that is dealing with more stories of the gangland wars before the arrest of Carl Williams which marks this week's first series finale.

One aspect of the story being speculated about is whether a new series could feature more detail about the life and crimes of Alphonse Gangitano, who was killed off in the first episode of Underbelly.

His character was played by actor Vince Colosimo and there is speculation the program producers would want to make more of Colosimo's sex symbol popularity in the future.

The stars of the program certainly showed last night how much they are enjoying their moment of fame when they arrived at the Logies in a Hummer with full gangster-look on display.

Their arrival was one of the highlights of the night - both at the event and during the televised broadcast.

May 05, 2008
The Courier-Mail