Kiera Knightley will be fronting a new Netflix spy thriller, Black Doves, created and written by British screenwriter and Lazarus Project showrunner Joe Barton. Joining the cast is Ben Wishaw and Happy Valley’s Sarah Lancashire.
Set during the Christmas season in London, the show focuses on Helen Webb (Knightley), a loving mother, prominent politician’s wife, and long-standing professional spy. As part of the shadowy organisation Black Doves, Webb has been passing on her husband’s state secrets.
When Webb’s lover winds up dead, danger comes knocking at her door, and the only solace and safety she can find is in the company of her old friend Sam Young (Wishaw). However, sophisticated and champagne-drinking Sam is battling his own demons as the consequences of a botched assassination job come back to haunt him.
The official logline reads: “Together, they set off on a mission that will lead them to uncover a vast, interconnected conspiracy. One that links the murky underworld of London to a looming geopolitical crisis — and leads them to question the cost of the moral choices they’ve made.”
Joining Knightley and Whishaw in the six-part series, which commenced production in London last week, are Andrew Buchan (Carnival Row), Kathryn Hunter (The Tragedy of Macbeth), Sam Troughton (Chernobyl), Ella Lily Hyland (Fifteen Love), Adam Silver (The Diplomat), Ken Nwosu (Look the Other Way and Run) and Gabrielle Creevy (In My Skin).
Barton said to Variety, “I started writing the scripts for this show over last year’s Christmas holidays, fuelled by turkey sandwiches and discarded bottles of cream liquor. To be now going into production with a cast and crew full of people whose work I admire so much is unbelievably exciting, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to get to see this show come to life.”
It marks the second London-based spy series commissioned by Netflix, who previously announced that All Quiet on the Western Front director Edward Berger would be adapting Christopher Reich’s Simon Riske book series.