Sanditon boss says it "would have felt wrong" not to include a queer love story

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Sanditon boss on season three's queer love storyBritbox/Joss Barratt - ITV

Sanditon spoilers follow.

Sanditon showrunner Justin Young has opened up about the show's decision to include a queer love story in season three.

Episode four of the Jane Austen-inspired period drama's third season saw fan-favourite character Arthur Parker (played by Turlough Convery) finally admit his feelings for the Duke of Buckinghamshire, Lord Harry Montrose (Edward Davis).

Speaking to Decider, Young explained why it was important to include the story in what will be the show's final season.

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"We love Arthur as a character. I mean, we absolutely loved him and we thought: 'Well, he deserves a love interest as much as anyone else,'" Young said.

"It would have felt wrong not to have [a queer romance] amid all of these love stories because as you may have noticed, there [are] a lot of love stories in season three. It would have been wrong not to have all different kinds of love represented."

Executive producer Belinda Campbell added that the decision about Arthur's sexuality was largely down to how Convery portrayed the character.

"I think that Turlough’s portrayal in earlier series made us sort of think that this was an interesting avenue to explore with him," she explained.

"He hadn't had his love story, and it felt much more authentic and truthful to tell that story than a sort of a more regular regency romance with a lovely girl.

"It's almost like he’s denied himself happiness and an emotional life and then we discover why."

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Britbox/Joss Barratt - ITV

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Sanditon season three was announced back in December, with PBS confirming the season would be the show's last.

Executive producer Susanne Simpson said in a statement at the time: "Sanditon has been an incredibly special series for Masterpiece, and we know it has found its way into the hearts of countless fans.

"While we are sad to say goodbye to the series, we know our audience has a lot to look forward to in this new season."

Sanditon season 3 airs on PBS in the US, with the entire season available to stream on that day. ITV airs the show in the UK.

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