British broadcaster ITV has picked up the four-part series, which revolves around Birmingham-based police officer Rachita Ray, who takes on a case that forces her to face a lifelong personal conflict between her British identity and her South Asian heritage. The story will follow a murder investigation while at the same time exploring issues of racism in the workplace.
Nagra, perhaps best known for her role as Dr. Neela Rasgotra in the NBC medical drama series ER, will play Ray, who is promoted to the murder unit to investigate what is described as a “culturally specific homicide.” Ray is disappointed, believing she was chosen for her ethnicity rather than her skillset. However, she is determined to find the killer and confront her colleagues’ biases.
The show is written by Sondhi, who plays Maneet in the BBC police drama Line of Duty. Mercurio will executive produce alongside Black Mirror’s Madonna Baptiste, while Alex Pillai (Riverdale) is on board as director. Mercurio’s HTM Television and Charlotte Surtees (Code 404) will produce.
“I am so looking forward to getting back to the UK after such a challenging time globally to be part of this exciting new project,” said Nagra, who has also starred in shows such as The Blacklist and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. “Written by Maya Sondhi and exec produced by the force that is Jed Mercurio, we are being helmed by an amazing team to bring something special to our story telling landscape.”
Sondhi added, “This is a project which is deeply personal for me as a British Asian Brummie woman. It’s only in the past 10 years or so I’ve really been able to truly embrace my heritage. So much of this show is my story and in telling it honestly, I hope others from all different backgrounds will relate.”
The series is expected to film in the Midlands in the U.K. later this year. There is no word yet on where the show will land in the U.S. but it will be distributed globally by Hat Trick International and Anton Corp.
DI Ray, TBA, ITV