Locally-filmed programme to air in March

Tui (newcomer Jacqueline Joe) appears in the first official image released in early December to promote Top of the Lake, filmed in the Wakatipu during winter 2012. Photo by Parisa Taghizadeh.
Tui (newcomer Jacqueline Joe) appears in the first official image released in early December to promote Top of the Lake, filmed in the Wakatipu during winter 2012. Photo by Parisa Taghizadeh.

Top of the Lake, the eagerly-awaited television series from Academy Award-winning New Zealand writer-director Jane Campion which was filmed in and around Queenstown last year, will debut on Sky on UKTV from March 25.

Starring Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men), David Wenham (Killing Time), Peter Mullan (War Horse), Tom Wright (Balibo) and Holly Hunter (Saving Grace), Top of the Lake is described as a powerful and haunting mystery. BBC Worldwide Australasia spokeswoman Deirdre Brennan said in a statement the corporation was ''proud to present this exciting piece of television to New Zealand audiences.

''[Co-writers] Jane Campion and Gerard Lee have created something truly unique.

''At its heart, Top of the Lake is a gripping mystery centred on the disappearance of a 12-year-old girl. But the spectacular setting of New Zealand's Southern Alps, the richly imagined community and the women's camp led by Holly Hunter's enigmatic guru GJ, bring real depth, colour and distinction to this production.''

Top of the Lake will have its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival this month. It is the first time the prestigious festival has included a scripted long-form series in their line-up.

Genevieve Lemon (Sweetie), Robyn Nevin of Australian theatre, Robyn Malcolm (Outrageous Fortune), Jay Ryan (Go Girls) Kip Chapman (The Cult) and Madeleine Sami (Super City) are among the transtasman talent to feature in the production.

Don't mention Queenstown

Reference to 'Queenstown, millionaire playground' is no longer included in UKTV trailering of this crime outing.