Tom Hollander was rejected from "The Missing" before joining spin-off "Baptiste".
The 51-year-old actor previously tried out for a role in the BBC One drama - which starred the likes of James Nesbitt in series one and David Morrissey in series two - but after being turned down he landed a role in the follow-up show, which features Tchéky Karyo as the titular detective.
Tom - who plays an uncle hunting for his niece - said: "I'd auditioned for "The Missing" and been rejected. I had a bit of an axe to grind about that."
Like "The Missing", "Baptiste" looks set to have viewers on the edge of their seats, with Tom promising a cliff-hanger as the first episode comes to its conclusion.
He added: "There is certainly a twist at the end of the first episode."
Tchéky landed his own series after winning the hearts of "The Missing" viewers as Julien Baptiste over the first two seasons, and he admits becoming a sex symbol aged 51 has made him "feel young again".
He is quoted by The Sun's Bizarre TV column as saying: "I didn't expect it, but it's flattering. This has made me feel young again."
As well as Tom and Tchéky, Jessica Raine will also star in the hotly-anticipated spin-off as Genevieve, who seeks out Baptiste's help.
Executive producers Harry and Jack Williams said in a statement: "We are so pleased to welcome Jessica Raine to our brilliant cast; her talent and commitment are perfect for Genevieve and we're really excited to see what she does with the character."
The pair are also excited about working with Tom.
They said: "We have wanted to work with Tom for some time and are so pleased he is going to play Edward in "Baptiste".
"Tom's huge range and formidable talent make him a wonderful addition to our cast."