Multi award winning actors Ben Whishaw (This is Going to Hurt, A Very British Scandal and Paddington) and Sarah Lancashire (Happy Valley) board new spy thriller, BLACK DOVES, alongside previously announced Keira Knightley.

The six part series, which began filming in central London last week, will also star Andrew Buchan (Carnival Row), Andrew Koji (Warrior), Kathryn Hunter (Andor), Sam Troughton (Chernobyl, Mank), Ella Lily Hyland (Fifteen Love, Silent Roar), Adam Silver (The Diplomat, Masters of The Air, Eric), Ken Nwosu (Look the Other Way and Run) and Gabrielle Creevy (In My Skin).

Set against the backdrop of London at Christmas, BLACK DOVES is a sharp, action-filled and heartfelt story of friendship and sacrifice.

It follows Helen Webb (Keira Knightley), a quick-witted, down to earth, dedicated wife and mother — and professional spy. For 10 years, she’s been passing on her politician husband’s secrets to the shadowy organisation she works for: the Black Doves. When her secret lover Jason is assassinated, her spymaster, the enigmatic Reed (Sarah Lancashire) calls in Helen’s old friend to keep her safe.

Sam Young (Ben Whishaw) is a suave, Champagne-drinking assassin. But having been out of the game since a failed job with disastrous consequences, he’s come home to a London that has moved on without him. As his past threatens to catch up with him, his task is to protect Helen as she investigates who killed Jason and why. 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.

BLACK DOVES is created and written by Joe Barton (Giri/Haji, The Lazarus Project).

Joe Barton says: “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.”

BLACK DOVES is produced by Joe Barton’s Noisy Bear and SISTER (Chernobyl, This Is Going To Hurt, The Power) for Netflix. Executive Producers are Joe Barton for Noisy Bear, Jane Featherstone (Chernobyl, This Is Going To Hurt), Chris Fry (Kaos, Giri/Haji) for SISTER and Keira Knightley. The series is directed by Alex Gabassi (The Crown) and Lisa Gunning (The Power). Harry Munday serves as producer.

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