January 17, 2020

“Citadel” multi-series: Amazon Prime Video reimagine the spy genre

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Credit: World Productions official promotion of Bodyguard

The phrase, “think global, act local” is apt for Amazon Prime Video’s Citadel multi-series. At its core, Citadel will be an all-action U.S. spy series connected to localized stories showing a bigger picture.

With Treadstone and Jack Ryan in the bag, it is clear Prime Video is cornering the market on big-name spies. So, what better way than to keep a spy hungry fan base happy, than to reimagine the genre?

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Reinventing the spy genre

Citadel does this by creating a master series, and then spin-off series that chart the everyday lives of its characters. These characters are in different locations from around the world. This gives an extended sense of scale often impossible in a series.

Let’s consider the biggest spy of all, James Bond. We see Bond interact with agents and bad guys, but unless they’re one of the main characters, it’s fleeting. In Citadel, we could see those agents and bad guys in more detail.

The ability to tell multiple stories, from multiple perspectives, including that of double-agents leading secretive lives liberates the spy genre in a way impossible if focused on one person, or one team.

Simply put, this format means a novel can become multiple series, rather than having huge sections and characters removed.

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Big names at the helm

Think of this multi-series like how Marvel did The Avengers. There was a movie sequence where all characters were together, and then stand-alone movies for many of the individual heroes. With this in mind, it comes at no surprise that the Russo Brothers, who directed Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame are also directing the Amazon Prime Video Citadel multi-series.

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What we know so far

  • Game of Thrones star Richard Madden and Quantico‘s Priyanka Chopra Jonas will star.
  • Amazon Prime Video call Citadel a “groundbreaking global event multi-series.”
  • Amazon has confirmed three series so far including the main story set in the United States. Other series include one set in India and the other in Italy.
  • Amazon head Jen Salke said that they are looking to add two more series in different locations.
  • The series set outside the United States will have titles that connect back to the main series, to ensure people know they’re connected.

No release date has been announced yet for Citadel, and the show begins production early this year.

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