David Strathairn leads new additions to BBC One's McMafia cast

A distinguished international cast has begun filming for BBC One’s unprecedented fast paced thriller McMafia, an eight part series inspired by Misha Glenny’s best-selling book and created by Hossein Amini (Drive) and James Watkins (The Woman In Black).

Co-produced by BBC, AMC and Cuba Pictures, in association with Twickenham Studios, McMafia charts Alex Godman’s (James Norton) journey as he is drawn deeper and deeper into the criminal world.

Joining James Norton (War & Peace, Happy Valley) are David Strathairn (The Bourne Ultimatum, Good Night, and Good Luck) playing Semiyon Kleiman, a well-connected Israeli businessman with a twinkle in his eye that betrays deeper secrets, Faye Marsay (Love Nina, Game Of Thrones) portraying Katya, Alex’s sister and Juliet Rylance (The Knick, Frances Ha) as Alex’s strong-willed and morally upright British girlfriend, Rebecca.

Aleksey Serebryakov (The Method, Leviathan) as Dimitri, Alex’s father and the exiled head of the Russian mafia and Maria Shukshina (Yolki 3, Terrorist Ivanona) as Oksana, Alex’s socialite mother, round out the cast in the thrilling global drama.

Godman (Norton) is the English-raised son of Russian exiles with a mafia history, who has spent his life trying to escape the shadow of that criminal past, building his own legitimate business and forging a life with his girlfriend Rebecca. But when his family’s past murderously returns to threaten them, Alex is forced to confront his values to protect those he loves.

What starts out as a story of survival and revenge becomes an epic tale of a man’s struggle against the lures of corruption in the modern world and in himself. McMafia is impressive and intimate, glamorous and gritty, global in scale and forensic in detail.

Nick Marston, CEO, Cuba Pictures, says: “It is tremendously exciting to be producing this series and working with great partners, the BBC, AMC and BBC Worldwide. We want to make a show which can stand out from the crowd for its originality, character depth and contemporary resonance. Luckily, Hossein Amini, James Watkins and the top-class writing team, inspired by Misha Glenny’s ground-breaking book, have delivered scripts of the first order. With James Watkins directing the whole series and James Norton heading a perfect cast, we couldn’t be in better hands to realise the immense promise of this show.”