Keri Russell is back as an American on foreign soil.
The “Americans” alum leads Netflix political drama “The Diplomat” as Kate Wyler, the new U.S. Ambassador to the United Kingdom. From showrunner Debora Cahn (“The West Wing,” “Homeland”), “The Diplomat” is a high-stakes, contemporary political drama about the transcendence and torture of long-term relationships — between countries and people.
Per the official synopsis, Kate was supposed to go to Afghanistan. She’s great in a crisis zone. In a historic home…less so. War is brewing on one continent and boiling over on another. Kate will have to diffuse international crises, forge strategic alliances in London, and adjust to her new place in the spotlight — all while trying to survive her marriage to fellow career diplomat and political star Hal Wyler (Rufus Sewell).
David Gyasi, Ali Ahn, Rory Kinnear, and Ato Essandoh also star, with Celia Imrie, Michael McKean, Nana Mensah, T’Nia Miller, and Miguel Sandoval guest-starring.
Lead actress Russell and showrunner Cahn serve as executive producers along with Janice Williams. “The Diplomat” is produced by Dan Toland. The eight-episode series filmed across London, Cotswolds, and Paris over seven months.
Russell admitted to Vanity Fair that after her critically acclaimed turn in FX’s long-running series “The Americans,” she was skeptical to return to TV.
“I definitely wasn’t looking to do another series,” Russell said. “[But] I just couldn’t stop thinking about it. So I was like, ‘This is impossible — and I’m going to do it.'”
Russell gave advice to viewers, adding, “Whenever a show starts, I’m always like, ‘Give it a few episodes!’ That’s what I felt with ‘The Americans’ too — those first episodes, we were like, ‘What is this?’ Then you figure it out. So I hope people stick around for a few episodes because it gets better.”
Creator Cahn cited the inspiration behind the high-stakes series.
“The world might end on Tuesday because of a decision that they do or don’t make, but that doesn’t mean they remember the name of the person they’re talking to, and that doesn’t mean that they didn’t forget to take the tag off of their pants,” she said, explaining that the idea for “The Diplomat” came about when she was a writer-producer on “Homeland.” A group of experts came in to share their real-life stories.
“They’re quiet and unassuming. Like, this woman who looks like my Aunt Ruthie — she was in the middle of a crisis involving nuclear waste and a truck driving off an icy Siberian road and bombs dropping,” Cahn said. “Nobody knows what these people do. It’s such front-lines-y kind of activity, and nobody ever knows about it.”
“The Diplomat” premieres April 20 on Netflix.
Check out the trailer below.