THE mayor has found a body at the bottom of the stairs at the Ballarat Town Hall.
But don’t worry, Dr Lucien Blake will yet again find out “whodunnit”.
The first episode of the second season of The Dr Blake Mysteries began filming in Ballarat yesterday, with the town hall, the Old Colonists’ Club and Lydiard Street in the spotlight over the next two days.
Booms, cameras and 1950s cars lined Sturt Street outside the town hall as stars Craig McLachlan and Joel Tobeck filmed one of the early scenes, which included local radio identity Frank Clark as an extra.
Afterwards, Mr McLachlan was happy to chat with a young fan as he posed for photographs.
“It’s great to be back here. I’ve been really looking forward to getting back to Ballarat,” he said.
Creator and producer George Adams said the first scenes filmed were about some nasty goings-on at the town hall.
“The mayor’s found a body at the bottom of the stairs and this is the aftermath of all that,” Mr Adams said.
“The town hall staircase actually inspired the storyline.”
He said today’s filming in Lydiard Street would focus on Dr Blake’s return to his home town after he left Ballarat in season one’s final episode to try to find his lost family.
“We’re hoping the day will be fine and clear but it will be what it will be.”
Mr Adams said filming would return to Ballarat in two weeks’ time, with Lake Wendouree again a focus.
“I’m Scottish but the last time we filmed at Lake Wendouree it was the coldest day I’ve ever known.”
He said the actors and crew enjoyed filming in Ballarat.
“It’s remarkably easy. Everyone is enormously friendly.
“We’ve also got a great crew who have been doing this a long time so we try to do it with as little interruption as possible.”
Between 500 and 600 extras from Ballarat will be used in the filming.
“When we’re here, we try to use as many local people as possible. We try to use local cars too.”
Mr Adams said he had been surprised by the first series’ success after it was the number-one rated show on the ABC last year.
“I’m surprised at the mix of people who watch it as well. We’ve got from teens to mid-80s.
“I think it’s a period people remember really fondly. It was a nobler, gentler time.
“It feels more real because it is in a real place.”
Mr Adams said the 1950s storylines were still relevant today.
“Politics is still politics, love is still love, death is still death.
“All the reasons for killing people are still the same.”