Archie Panjabi, Christopher Plummer To Star In New Global TV Thriller ‘Departure’

A Canadian acting icon and a beloved star of “The Good Wife” have been cast in the intriguing new thriller “Departure”, heading to Global next year. The six-part event series, starring Oscar winner Christopher Plummer and Emmy winner Archie Panjabi, has begun production in Toronto.

Created by Vincent Shiao (“Ransom”, “Aftermath”), “Departure” comes from Shaftesbury and Greenpoint Productions Ltd., featuring T.J. Scott (“Orphan Black”, “Star Trek: Discovery”) as director and Malcolm MacRury (“Saving Hope”) as showrunner. According to the announcement, principal photography on the Canada/U.K. co-production will also film in London, England. 

Described as a “high-octane conspiracy series” and an “adrenaline-fuelled serialized thrill ride,” “Departure” follows the mystery that ensues after a passenger airliner vanishes while flying over the Atlantic Ocean.

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“Kendra Malley (Panjabi), the recently widowed, brilliant aviation investigator, is called in by her former boss and mentor Howard Lawson (Plummer) to investigate the mysterious crash,” the synopsis continues. “With the whole world watching, Kendra and her team race to pinpoint the missing aircraft and locate possible survivors. They must battle through a host of suspects and motives — pilot suicide, terrorism, politically motivated murder, systems failure — to determine what really happened to Flight 716… and to stop it from happening again.”

“Departure” also co-stars Kris Holden-Ried (“Vikings”), Claire Forlani (“Hawaii Five-O”), Rebecca Liddiard (“Frankie Drake Mysteries”), Shazad Latif (“Star Trek: Discovery”), Tamara Duarte (“Longmire”), Peter Mensah (“Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.”), Kristian Bruun (“Orphan Black”), Allan Hawco (“Caught”), Dougray Scott (“Snatch”), Sasha Roiz (“Grimm”), Mark Rendall (“30 Days of Night”), Dmitry Chepovetsky (“Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol”) and Paris Jefferson (“Sunset Contract”).

Ontario’s Kristen Holden-Reid co-stars in “Departure”.
Ontario’s Kristen Holden-Reid co-stars in “Departure”.

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“It’s an honour to partner with the talented team at Shaftesbury on this bold, new premium drama, adding to Global’s robust original programming slate,” said Lisa Godfrey, vice president of original content with Corus Entertainment. “We were immediately drawn to the gripping storyline about the conspiracies surrounding the plane crash, and how the plot takes audiences through the investigation as we try to solve this mystery. With such a mass appeal premise, combined with a highly acclaimed award-winning cast, and exceptional creative team, we look forward to captivating audiences in 2019.”

Rebecca Liddiard co-stars in “Departure”.
Rebecca Liddiard co-stars in “Departure”.

Executive producer of “Departure” and chairman & CEO of Shaftesbury, Christina Jennings added: “One of the thrills of ‘Departure’ is that the wheel of suspects never stops spinning, right until the final moment. It’s an exciting race against time for these characters, brilliantly created by Vincent Shiao and Malcolm MacRury — I can’t wait to see them brought to life by our incredible cast led by Archie Panjabi and Christopher Plummer. Delighted to be in business with Corus and Starlings on this remarkable series.”

“Departure” is the final original series commissioned by Global for the 2019 broadcast season, joining other original series “Nurses”, “Ransom”, “Mary Kills People”, “Private Eyes” and “Big Brother Canada”.

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This Week On TV: Nov. 12-18

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