This Is Why Brienne Of Tarth Is Hanging Out In Sydney

22 March 2016 | 1:19 pm | Staff Writer

And here we were, hoping for that 'The Australian Adventures Of Captain Phasma' mini-series you all know you want

BBC First and Aussie pay-TV provider Foxtel have announced that filming is under way in Sydney for season two of Golden Globe-nominated mini-series Top Of The Lake — and Game Of Thrones and Star Wars star Gwendoline Christie has joined the cast.

The announcement delivers some context for Christie's surprise appearance at Madonna's performance in the city on Saturday, during which the veteran songstress brought out the actor for a touch of stage banter and casual spanking. As you do.

Regardless, at least we now know there is a larger calling Down Under for the woman best known as Brienne Of Tarth (second-best known as Captain Phasma) in joining the acclaimed mini-series — co-created, co-written and co-directed by Jane Campion and Gerard Lee — which also sees the return of series one star Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men) in her Golden Globe-winning role as Detective Robin Griffin.

"I am so delighted to be working on Top Of The Lake season two," Christie said in a statement. "Jane Campion has been a major creative influence throughout my life and I could not feel more privileged to be working on the next installment of her unique and enthralling drama, alongside the brilliant Elisabeth Moss."

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Moss was similarly effusive about the second series, saying in a statement: "I'm so excited to be back in Australia working with Jane on exploring this wonderful character. I can't wait for audiences to see where we take Robin's journey!"

The second season of Top Of The Lake, subtitled China Girl, will consist of six episodes, produced by See-Saw Films for BBC Two, in co-operation with BBC First and Foxtel here in Australia, BBC UKTV in New Zealand, and SundanceTV in the US. It picks up four years after the events of the first season and moves the location from New Zealand to Sydney — a fact not lost on Foxtel Executive Director of Television Brian Walsh.

"Top Of The Lake was a breakthrough drama series for Foxtel and has been widely recognised both internationally and locally for its craftsmanship and storytelling," Walsh said in a statement. "It is an important franchise for Foxtel and we are delighted to collaborate with our colleagues at See-Saw Films, Jane Campion and the BBC to bring the landmark second series to our subscribers. Top of the Lake Season Two: China Girl reflects our commitment to premium Australian drama production and joins our rich slate of locally produced series made for Foxtel subscribers."

Top Of The Lake: China Girl will make its Australian premiere on Foxtel's BBC First channel next year. If you're yet to catch up, check out the trailer for the first season below.