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SYFY WIRE Last Light

Last Light: Matthew Fox slipping into new Peacock event series tackling a global oil meltdown

By Benjamin Bullard

A worldwide collapse that unfolds in real time, a desperate dad trying to unravel its secrets while finding his way back home, and a shadowy cabal that may be behind it all — that’s the book-based setup for Last Light, a new event series headed to Peacock that lends a barrel of crude, real-world gravity to the idea of global apocalypse.

Matthew Fox (Lost) will make his return to TV in the new limited drama thriller series, alongside Golden Globe-winning co-star Joanne Froggatt (LiarDownton Abbey), Peacock announced today. Based on Alex Scarrow’s 2007 international best-selling novel of the same name, Last Light follows the global chaos that ensues when the world’s oil infrastructure is suddenly interrupted — and tracks a sinister mystery that suggests it was much more than a mere accident.

Last Light is set to run as a 5-episode event series, with Fox executive producing along with William Choi and Entertainment 360. Also serving as an executive producer is Dennie Gordon (Jack Ryan), who will direct the full series. Patrick Massett and John Zinman (Friday Night LightsThe Blacklist) will serve as showrunners as well as executive producers. The series hails from MGM International TV Productions in association with Nordic Entertainment Group’s Viaplay.    

While earth-shattering apocalyptic themes often rely on zombies, plagues, aliens, and other sci-fi staples, Scarrow’s novel wrests a more reality-based brand of tension from a scenario that feels far more plausible. What happens when the energy that makes the world go ‘round suddenly runs out?

“This is a timely thriller about society’s dependency on oil and its devastating effects on our planet,” said Rola Bauer, President of MGM International TV Productions, in Peacock’s announcement.

Fox will star as Andy Neilson. an American ex-pat living in London. As one of the world’s most sought-after petrochemical engineers, Andy is “brilliant and very in demand, but his drive and ambition have sometimes been to the detriment of his family life,” Peacock teases. Stuck on a business trip to the Middle East when chaos erupts, “Andy realizes that his worst fears are coming true and his family is separated at this crucial moment. His teenage daughter, Laura, is alone at home in London while his wife, Elena, and young son, Sam, are in Paris.”

Froggatt, meanwhile, will try to hold the family together as Elena Neilson, a “smart, caring, and beautiful” mom devoted to reversing the degenerative eye disease that afflicts Sam, their youngest child. Elena surrenders a “thriving professional career [to] put all of her considerable energy and ability toward finding a cure,” though her dedication is “tempered by the state of her marriage, which has been strained to the breaking point.”

Last Light is the perfect combination of an action-packed limited series with a compelling family drama at its heart,” said Lisa Katz, president of scripted content at NBCUniversal Television and Streaming. “…[T]his sweeping international saga spans several continents that provide a stunning global backdrop, yet is grounded in a relatable and topical story. We can’t wait to share this with Peacock audiences.”

There’s no early word on when Last Light will flicker to life, though Peacock said that Gordon, as director, is “currently on the ground in Prague,” where location filming for Last Light is set to get underway.

SYFY WIRE and Peacock are properties of NBCUniversal, a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation.