Top Red Rock character killed off for Christmas
Red Rock fans will be left reeling when one of the main characters is killed off in an explosive cliffhanger.
The nail-biting episode sees TV3's IFTA-winning soap take a decidedly dark turn as it depicts the brutal killing of a key cast member.
TV3 gave a sneak preview of the jaw-dropping December 30 episode at a screening in the Light House cinema in Smithfield.
Some of the cast attended, including Cathy Belton, who plays Patricia Hennessy, and Denise McCormack, aka Bridget Kiely.
Over the past few weeks, viewers have watched Paudge being blackmailed by Beady Burke while Superintendent James McKay continues trying to find out the identity of the station mole.
Now speculation is rife among fans as they try to figure out which character will be killed off in a new departure for the programme.
Producer Gareth Phillips said they really wanted this character's demise to be a "huge surprise" to viewers.
"We're so proud of these episodes and really hope the audience gets behind us. It was a big decision for us to kill off one of our central characters," he said.
"But much like when Game of Thrones killed off Sean Bean (Ned Stark) in its first series, we felt that losing this character would open up new story opportunities."
Meanwhile, fans of the soap could be in for a treat next year as TV3 bosses have vowed to increase the number of weekly episodes.
It currently airs twice a week, but this could double, according to CEO David McRedmond.
"We want to be able to show more episodes - two a week isn't enough," he said.
"We want to do more episodes per week because we think that will sustain it better."
He added that the show may also not be taking a break for the summer months as they continue building up the momentum.
TV3 recently sold the Red Rock rights to Amazon for €1m in what Mr McRedmond described as a "pretty major deal".
"It's certainly the biggest deal TV3 has been involved in and possibly the biggest deal in Irish television for a programme sale," he said.
"That's how big Red Rock is. Being sold in the States also means a whole new world has opened up to us."
He said the show was a 10-year project, a mark of how important it is to the broadcaster.
"Red Rock is the most important thing TV3 has ever done. That includes Rugby World Cup 2015 and our recent Six Nations rights win," said Mr McRedmond.