UKTV continues to invest in original drama for its specialist crime drama channel, Alibi with the commission of six-part series The Diplomat.
“I’m delighted to be working with UKTV on The Diplomat – a show that I think will suit their obvious ambition for innovative and exciting new drama. In The Diplomat I wanted to show a character who both loves her job and – supported by a team of funny and engaging characters – performs it beyond the call of duty. From helping Britons in distress to challenging the shady operations of international mafias, Laura Simmonds (British Consul in Barcelona) has to deal with it all.” – Writer and creator Ben Richards
Set around the British Consul in Barcelona. Written by Ben Richards (Spooks, Cobra, The Tunnel), the series is produced by World Productions (Bodyguard, Line of Duty) for Alibi and BBC Studios Distribution.
The Diplomat follows Laura Simmonds and her Barcelona Consul colleague and friend Alba Ortiz as they fight to protect British nationals who find themselves in trouble in the Catalan city. Mixing the roles of lawyer, counsellor and cop, Laura and Alba’s diplomatic skills are stretched to the limit by the stream of cases that walk through the Consul’s doors.
The series opens on the unexplained death of a young British barman working around Barcelona’s notorious marina. While Laura supports the boy’s angry father, neither the Spanish police nor the Foreign Office are keen to pursue a murder enquiry. As Laura and Alba uncover the events surrounding the barman’s death, they discover links not only to organised crime, but also to the British security services. Laura’s quest for justice places her in real jeopardy, as she threatens to expose secrets that the British and Spanish will go to any lengths to keep hidden.
“Laura and Alba are contrasting professional working women dealing with murder, abductions and organised crime alongside managing their careers and love lives while avoiding diplomatic hierarchies and maintaining a tight friendship. It is “The Good Wife meets Spooks” for 2021, a feisty workplace drama set in Barcelona with cracking dialogue, abundant crime and a surprising series arc. Television to stay in for by the very talented Ben Richards. I am very excited to work with such an expert lead writer as Ben, but equally excited to add talented up and coming writers to the writing team.” – UKTV drama commissioner Philippa Collie Cousins
The series is due to air exclusively on Alibi in 2021. Production will start when safely able to do so. The Diplomat is the third UKTV Original for Alibi, following the hit show Traces from Red Production Company, and We Hunt Together, produced by BBC Studios.