Red Eye cast - Jing Lusi, Richard Armitage & Lesley Sharp

Red Eye – ITV commissions a high-octane thriller from Bad Wolf

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The in-flight international series stars Richard Armitage, Jing Lusi and Lesley Sharp. 

ITV have announced that they have cleared the airborne thriller series Red Eye for take-off.

The six-part show takes place both onboard an all-night plane flight from London to Beijing, as well as in the corridors of power in Westminster.

Richard Armitage

Red Eye stars Richard Armitage (Spooks), alongside Jing Lusi (Gangs of London) and Lesley Sharp.

Here’s the premise for Red Eye:

After attending a medical conference in Beijing and coming frighteningly close to dying in a car crash, Dr Matthew Nolan, played by Richard Armitage arrives home and is immediately arrested at London’s Heathrow Airport.

Exhausted and confused, Nolan is accused of the murder of a woman who was in the car he crashed. Despite his protests that he was driving alone, Nolan is set to return to China to face charges.

DC Hana Li, played by Jing Lusi is the no-nonsense, London officer charged with accompanying Nolan back to Beijing. Her resentment for this assignment, and of Nolan himself, is immediate.

However, in flight, when a first death occurs, DC Li begins to suspect foul play. Further deaths confirm that Nolan is in danger, and after a call from MI5, Hana finds herself embroiled in an escalating conspiracy.

Back in London, we follow Hana’s sister, scrappy, reporter Jess Li, played by Jemma Moore, who is running her own investigation into Nolan’s extradition and finds herself running for her life from an unknown assassin.

And in Thames House, the head of MI5, Madeline Delaney, played by Lesley Sharp (The Full Monty), breaks protocol and risks her entire career to not only help Hana and Nolan stay alive, but to expose an international conspiracy that seems to implicate both China and people in her own government.

Jing Lusi

Jing Lusi said:

“Red Eye marks a turning point in British Asian representation and I am beyond thrilled and proud to be leading this series alongside the wonderful Richard Armitage. Bad Wolf is one of the most exciting production companies in the world, making some of the best loved and most respected shows today; and I’m sure Red Eye will be breaking new ground.”

Richard Armitage added:

“I’m excited to be boarding Red Eye alongside Jing Lusi. This action-packed espionage thriller is one of the best scripts I have read in a long time. Thrilled to be reuniting with the brilliant Julie Gardner and the team at Bad Wolf and Sony… what a ride!”

Red Eye comes from the Sony Television Pictures backed Bad Wolf, the new producers of Doctor Who.

The writers are Peter A. Dowling (Black and Blue, Flightplan) and Jingan Young, and it is the former’s television debut. The director is Kieron Hawkes, the producer is Kristian Dench. Julie Gardner (I Hate Suzie, Doctor Who) executive produces, alongside Lachlan MacKinnon (Industry, A Discovery of Witches).

It will be interesting to compare the show to Hijack. The tense Idris Elba-fronted airborne real-time thriller lands at Apple TV+ on 28th June, 2023.

Red Eye is landing on ITVX in 2024. We’ll keep you posted.