Why Death in Paradise actors quit – from marriage saving to Caribbean fears

Getting a role in Death in Paradise can often be a death sentence.

The inhabitants of the fictional paradise of Sainte Marie don’t tend to stay too long due to all the stabbing, shootings and deaths associated with the ice pick.

But that’s what prompts viewers to watch popular BBC drama about a collection of out of the water detectives fighting crime on a tropical island by the millions.

Over the 11 seasons, there have been over 70 murders, including one of the main characters, which makes him almost as deadly as Midsomer Murders.

Four different actors took on the roles of the lead detective – Ben Miller, Kris Marshall, Ardal O’Hanlon, and current star Ralf Little.

Here’s a look at where the former main cast is now and why they left.

Ben Miller – Richard Poole

Ben Miller played DI Richard Poole


BBC / Red Planet / Denis Guyenon)

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It all started when a sweaty, red-faced detective, Richard Poole, arrived on the tropical island in a suit and tie.

He hated living in Sainte Marie during the first series, but eventually began to put up with island life.

But he came to an untimely end early in Series 3 when he was murdered at a Cambridge University reunion as he threatened to expose identity theft – with an ice pick.

Ben Miller decided to quit the role in 2014 because he wanted to save his relationship – and he was close to becoming a father.

“Two weeks after I arrived in the Caribbean, Jessica found out she was pregnant,” he revealed.

“I just got divorced and finally met someone and now I’m halfway around the world and we’re having a baby. Had to do to get my wife back – leave Death in Paradise!”

Ben Miller lasted two sets and a little


Daily Mirror)

The actor rose to fame alongside Pointless host Alexander Armstrong in their Armstrong and Miller comedy sketch.

Since then he has appeared in films by Johnny English, Primeval, Doc Martin and Upstart Crow.

Most recently, Ben played Lord Featherington in the Netflix series Bridgerton, which gambled all of his family’s money and then got it back.

However, it looks like he won’t be returning for a second season, as Featherington walked into a room with some unsavory characters before his death was announced.

Despite his fairly successful ending on Death in Paradise, Ben actually made a comeback for the 10th anniversary celebrations.

The actor jumped at the chance to return to the series as he has “an unfinished business” with the character, which appeared as a hallucination in the last series.

Kris Marshall – Humphrey Goodman

Kris Marshall had three series in the series



My Family star Kris Marshall took over from Ben Miller at the start of Series Three.

The forgetful and disorganized DI Humphrey Goodman loved the Caribbean life and fell lovingly in love with DS Bordey.

After solving a special case in London, DI Goodman decided to stay with new lover Martha.

In real life, Marshall chose to quit the show in 2017 due to the pressure the role put on his young family.

He told Radio Times he had an agreement with his wife Hannah that he would only do the show for “a few years.”

“This is something my wife and I discussed about three or four years ago,” Marshall said.

“When I was first offered the job, my son was six months old and my wife was not working, so it was a very easy decision. We decided that I would do Death in Paradise for a few years until that it becomes impossible.

“It was always a pretty limited thing. I certainly didn’t hide it from anyone I work with. I will miss it terribly. There have been times when I’ve been like, ‘Did I do it. good decision? ‘”

Kris Marshall had a funny reason to leave


BBC / Planète Rouge Pictures / Denis Guyenon)

The actor has since appeared in the historical drama Sanditon and the American comedy-drama Better Things.

In June of last year, Kris admitted he had to leave because his son was “getting too Caribbean”.

He told Lorraine Kelly on Good Morning Britain: “I realized I really had to bring my son to school.

“He was getting a little too Caribbean – he refused to wear shoes and only drank coconut water and ate pineapple”

He added: “He was very good on the beach but not so good with math and English so I decided it was time to take him to school. So the show had to go, really. .

“But six months later, I’m standing on a film set in a parking lot in Dagenham thinking at 4 in the morning thinking, ‘Did I make the right decision?'”

Ardal O’Hanlon – Jack Mooney

Ardal O’Hanlon as Detective Jack Mooney in Death In Paradise



The third man to take over as Detective Inspector was DI Jack Mooney, played by father actor Ted Ardal O’Hanlon.

DI Mooney first appeared when the team traveled to England as part of a murder investigation and was sent to St. Mary’s for a vacation as a temporary replacement.

After three years, it was time for DI Mooney to move on – to return to London with his daughter Siobhan instead of leaving with Anna.

“I have spent the last four summers in Guadeloupe playing DI Jack Mooney, solving over 20 murder cases during my time there!” Ardal O’Hanlon announced.

“It was an extremely rewarding and unforgettable experience, working with incredibly talented actors, directors and crew while discovering a magical part of the world.”

Ardal was part of the Death in Paradise team


BBC / Planète Rouge Pictures / Denis Guyenon)

Hinting that the heat may have been the reason for his decision to leave, he added: “It’s time to move on and explore other opportunities – preferably closer to the Arctic Circle. “

Ardal, who has appeared in Doctor Who and Skins, has also done stand-ups on Live at the Apollo and Michael McIntrye’s Comedy Roadshow.

Most recently, he appeared as Eamonn in Channel 4’s second comedy series Derry Girls and is in Taskmaster’s Series 13.

It doesn’t look like DI Mooney is coming back to the series anytime soon, as Ardal has claimed he feels a real sense of closure with the series.

Ralf Little – Neville Parker

Ralf has been the main character of Death In Paradise since 2020


BBC / Red Planet / Philip Volkers)

Family star Royle Ralf Little is currently at the helm as DI Neville Parker, who first appeared midway through Season 9 in 2020.

Neville struggled a bit while on the island due to his several severe allergies.

“It’s the best job on television,” Ralf told the Mirror this week. “Not just in terms of location, because Guadeloupe is beautiful. But the show itself has become quite iconic.

“Within an hour we get a puzzle and murder which is fully solved, with a red herring and a few twists and turns. And yet you have a lot of main characters who all have interrelationships and their own weaknesses and challenges. surpass.

“If you think of pretty much all the other crime shows, they have at least 90 minutes to do it. I think being a part of the show is a huge pleasure for me and kind of an honor.”

It remains to be seen how long Ralf will stay in the role, but the series has already been ordered for another series.

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