Production of Scott Frank’s British adaptation of Department Q is currently underway. The cast has been revealed, and production is ongoing in Edinburgh. Here’s what we know so far.
The series adaptation of Department Q has been in development since at least 2014, when the US TV rights to adapt the series were sold to Scott Frank, the lead creator of this series. In 2020, it was reported that Sony-owned Left Bank Pictures would produce Department Q.
Frank is best known for his work on two prior Netflix Original projects, Godless and The Queen’s Gambit. His most recent project, Monsieur Spade, is currently airing on AMC.
Left Bank Pictures is behind many Netflix Original projects, including The Crown, White Lines, and Behind Her Eyes. Upcoming projects include Palomino and The Fuck It Bucket.
The scripts for the series were written by Chandni Lakhani (Black Mirror, Vigil).
What’s the plot of Department Q?
Netflix’s Department Q is an adaptation of author Jussi Adler-Olsen‘s noir-thriller book series of the same name. Here’s the synopsis for the first book in the Department Q series, The Keeper of Lost Causes:
Carl Mørck used to be one of Copenhagen’s best homicide detectives. Then a hail of bullets destroyed the lives of two fellow cops, and Carl—who didn’t draw his weapon—blames himself. So a promotion is the last thing he expects. But Department Q is a department of one, and Carl’s got only a stack of Copenhagen’s coldest cases for company. His colleagues snicker, but Carl may have the last laugh, because one file keeps nagging at him: a liberal politician vanished five years earlier and is presumed dead.
But she isn’t dead … yet.
The book was published in 2007 and, judging by the official Netflix logline, will be the source material behind the first season.
Netflix has revealed a longer logline for the series;
“Department Q is an adaptation of the novels of the same name from Danish author, Jussi Adler-Olsen. Written by Scott Frank, Chandni Lakhani, Stephen Greenhorn and Colette Kane, the series revolves around Carl Morck, a former top-rated detective in Edinburgh assigned to a new cold case whilst wracked with guilt following an attack that left his partner paralysed and another policeman dead”
The book series has already been adapted into a film series in Denmark.
Who is cast in Department Q?
On February 6th, 2024, the main cast of Department Q was revealed.
Alongside the cast reveal, Netflix has also announced the names and descriptions of their roles.
Matthew Goode (The Imitation Game) plays the role of DCI Carl Mork;
“Detective, Carl Morck – brilliant but impossible – has his life turned upside down after a violent incident leaves his partner paralysed and an officer dead. Upon his return to work, he is tasked with setting up Department Q – a new cold case department, which is little more than a PR exercise. At first, being sidelined suits Carl; he’s happy to waste his days playing solitaire and skiving. Yet over the course of the series, Carl’s detective instincts are reawakened, and his new department down in the basement becomes an unlikely magnet for the misfits and mavericks of Chief Super, Moira’s police team. “
Chloe Pirrie (The Queen’s Gambit) plays the role of Merritt Lingard;
“Merritt, a ruthless and ambitious prosecutor, has quickly risen the ranks in the Crown Office. Merritt had a troubled childhood, raised by her absent father on the Isle of Mull. But after her brother William suffered a severe brain injury, she turned her life around and dedicated her life to him, whilst striving for justice in her role as prosecutor. However, in the wake of the biggest case of her career, Merritt decides she needs to make a change. As a result, Merritt and Carl’s paths collide.”
Alexej Manvelov (Chernobyl) plays the role of Akram Salim;
“Akram was an officer in the Syrian police force when civil war broke out. He decided to flee to Europe with his family. Unable to work as a cop in the UK, he petitions for work at Edinburgh’s police station, becoming Carl’s assistant. Akram keeps his past life in Syria private, but as the series goes on, Carl realises he’s underestimated his new partner.”
Kelly Macdonald (No Country for Old Men) as Dr Rachel Irving;
“Dr Rachel Irving is the therapist charged with getting officers back on the front line. She’s smart, and she soon gets the measure of Carl, his trauma and his superiority complex. Intrigued by one another, the two develop a deeper connection across the series.”
Leah Byrne (Deadwater Fell) plays the role of Rose;
“Rose was a top police cadet with a promising future in the force. But a mental-health-related breakdown during her first year as a detective constable has left her on shaky ground. Demoted to a desk job, the stigma has followed her ever since. She appeals to Carl in his new department down in the basement for a chance to prove herself once again.”
The remaining cast members confirmed for Department Q are;
- Mark Bonnar (Napoleon) as Stephen
- Shirley Henderson (Harry Potter) as Clare Marsh
- James Sives (Guilt) as DS Hardy
- Kate Dickie (Inside Man) as Moira
How many episodes will Department Q have?
It has been confirmed by Netflix that there will be eight episodes of Department Q. Each episode will have a runtime of 60 minutes.
What’s the production status of Department Q?
Production Status: In Production (Last Updated: 12/02/2024)
Production is currently underway in Edinburgh, Scotland. The exact filming dates have yet to be revealed.
What’s the Netflix release date for Department Q?
With production currently ongoing, a 2024 release is highly unlikely. A Q1 or Q2 2025 release is more probable.
Are you looking forward to watching Department Q on Netflix? Let us know in the comments below!