Underbelly is an Australian crime drama television series produced for the Nine Network. Each season contains 13 parts and is based on real life events including the Melbourne gangland killings between 1995 to 2004, the Griffith drug trade which happened between 1976 to 1987 and the Kings Cross scene between 1988 to 1999.
The first season is based on the book Leadbelly: Inside Australia's Underworld, by The Age journalists John Silvester and Andrew Rule.
The series premiered in Australia on 13 February 2008 on the Nine Network in all states and territories except Victoria, due to a court injunction.
Underbelly premiered in South Africa on DStv's M-Net Action channel on Friday 12 February 2010, at 19h00. It later aired on TopTV's Fox FX and Fox Entertainment channels. See "Seasons" below for seasonal broadcast dates and times.
Season 3 - entitled Underbelly: The Golden Mile - premiered on Fox Entertainment on Wednesday 21 July 2010, at 21h45. New episodes broadcast weekly. There are 13 episodes in the third season.
Season 3 Repeats
Sundays: 01h35, 21h45
Underbelly: The Golden Mile is set in King Cross in 1988-1999, where bent cops, straight cops, cool criminals and colourful characters all converged to make their mark.
But by 1995 the Wood Royal Commission had put the “black empire” under threat of collapse as strong and honest police fought to take back control of the most infamous strip in Australia.
Underbelly: The Golden Mile covers a turbulent, yet engrossing period in Australia’s recent history, going behind the scenes to look at the police corruption that was rife in NSW in the late 80's, set amidst the framework of the Golden Mile – Kings Cross – home to some of the city's most colourful characters.
The cops were bent and the crims were cool and together they ran the most exciting street in Australia... strippers, gamblers, gunmen, dealers, bouncers, bagmen... they all came to The Golden Mile!
A smart and sexy young Kim Hollingsworth, smiling teenage Kings Cross identity Johnny Ibrahim, the Bayeh Brothers, Trevor Haken, Chook Fowler... The Golden Mile was their playground and they played like there was no tomorrow.
Then, in 1995, "tomorrow" came and the Wood Royal Commission cleaned out the Black Empire within the NSW Police. What it left behind was a mess that took years of mayhem to bring under control.
Underbelly: The Golden Mile is the story of the excesses of the empire, the collapse of the empire, the chaos that followed, and the ultimate victory of strong and honest police... seen through the eyes of some of the most sexy, charming, corrupt and deadly people of the time.
The season is a prequel to the 2008 production Underbelly, which was about the Melbourne gangland killings and a sequel to the 2009 production Underbelly: A Tale of Two Cities which forms part of the Underbelly series.
In the first episode: teenager John Ibrahim, whose brother is a bouncer in the cross, saves another bouncer in Kings Cross from being beat up by drunks, earning him a meeting with boss George Freeman, whose advice prompts John to take start saving to buy into his first night club.
Trevor Haken transfers to Kings Cross Detectives and is introduced to the collecting of protection money from local businesses, with senior police fearing a royal commission.
Each season consists of 13 hour-long episodes
Channel: M-Net Action | Premiere: 12 Feb 2010 | Finale: 7 May 2010 | Fridays, 19h00
Channel: Fox FX | Premiere: 3 May 2010 | Finale: 26 Jul 2010 | Mondays, 20h30
Channel: Fox Entertainment | Premiere: 21 Apr 2010 | Finale: 14 Jul 2010 | Wed, 21h45
Channel: Fox FX | Premiere: 29 Mar 2011 | Finale: 21 Jun 2011 | Tuesdays, 20h30
Channel: Fox Entertainment | Premiere: 21 Jul 2010 | Finale: 13 Oct 2010 | Wed, 21h45