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Foxtel bosses reveal the real reason Wentworth came to an end and tease a replacement for the cult prison drama

''I'd rather the show go out on top.''

By Alana Mazzoni
Wentworth's cast, crew and fans' hearts collectively broke on Tuesday when the finale episode of the cult prison drama aired. Now, bosses at Foxtel have revealed why they decided to can the hugely popular show following nine action-packed seasons.
After its premiere in 2013, the show that is set behind the bars of Wentworth Correctional Centre has become one of the most renowned original Australian dramas of all time. It's been screened in 173 territories around the world, igniting millions of die-hard fans.
The much-loved Foxtel series, which aired its 100th and final episode on this week, shows the brutal pressure-cooker environment inside a women's prison, where the inmates are forced to forge unlikely friendships and allegiances if they want to survive their time behind bars.
Wentworth was initially axed when it reached its seventh season, but Foxtel renewed it for two more instalments following an unprecedented amount of fans calling for its continuation.
"Wentworth could go on, but it's time to tell some new stories." (Image: Foxtel)
Foxtel Executive Director of Television Brian Walsh has since revealed the network could no longer focus on creating other shows if it recourses were centered around Wentworth.
"There are other stories we want to tell. We're running a commercial business here. We've got a finite budget. I'd rather the show go out on top. Wentworth could go on, but it's time to tell some new stories," he told TV Tonight.
Long before the finale episode even aired, the question on everyone's lips was "will there be a spin-off?"
"I think it's an obvious question. But I think we need to have a break. I don't think necessarily, we'd recreate Wentworth Correctional Centre but I think that world is still tantalising and attractive," Brian said.
But fans are warned not to hold their breath for a spin-off, with Brian saying such a show wouldn't happen for years while Foxtel focuses on other projects.
Crime buffs will still be taken care of though, with Wentworth being replaced by jury drama The Twelve, which will start shooting on November 29 and is set to premiere mid next year.
"We are in final stages of casting for The Twelve which is going to be a big ensemble piece. It's the replacement for Wentworth only in the sense that it's a crime series. Our ambition is that it will be multi season. Each season will be a different crime and a different jury," Brian revealed.
On Wednesday, following the bombshell finale, Wentworth stars shared their sadness and nostalgia that the show had come to an end.
On Wednesday, following the bombshell finale, Wentworth stars shared their sadness and nostalgia that the show had come to an end. (Image: Foxtel)
Kate Box, who plays prisoner Lou Kelly, said there was "massive adrenaline" on set as the cast and crew shot the finale last year.
"It was freezing, it was bloody and everybody was so determined to go out giving it absolutely everything they had. There was massive passion to it given by everyone and a few tears as well," she told The Herald Sun.
Jane Hall, who joined the show in season eight as prison guard Ann Reynolds, said the team effort among the cast and crew was unmeasured to any series she'd previously worked on.
Wentworth was initially axed after its seventh season, but Foxtel renewed it for two more instalments following an unprecedented amount of fans calling for its continuation. (Image: Foxtel)
"I've only been in the last two seasons which makes me very fresh but as we worked through the scenes … everyone stayed behind even after their scenes had finished in order to stand around with the crew and clap everyone off as one by one we each completed our last scene on that day,'' she said.
Rurriwuy Hick, who plays prisoner Ruby Mitchell said she didn't expect the series' end to be so emotional.
"You give so much of yourself to the character and I'd been there since season six. I don't even know how to describe it, really, it's definitely a family and I still to this day miss everybody and miss being in that machine," she said.

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