Amazon Spy Thriller is the second most expensive TV show of all time

  • Joe and Anthony Russo are preparing a spy thriller for Amazon called “Citadel”.
  • The budget topped $200 million, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
  • It is the second most expensive series ever made, behind Amazon’s “Rings of Power”.

Joe and Anthony Russo, the directors of Marvel’s ‘Avengers: Endgame’ and Netflix’s ‘The Gray Man’, are directing a spy thriller for Amazon that has become one of the most expensive television shows ever made.

The Hollywood Reporter reported Thursday that the budget for the “Citadel” series exceeded $200 million due to pandemic-related expenses and costly reshoots.

That would make it the second most expensive season of a show of all time – behind Amazon’s “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power,” which launched its first two episodes on Thursday. The rights to this series alone cost $250 million, and production costs for the first season reached $465 million, according to THR.

Representatives for Amazon Studios and the Russos did not immediately return Insider’s requests for comment. They declined to comment for THR.

“Citadel” will bring together spies from around the world for a single mission, with the intention of launching local spin-off shows focusing on different spies in their own turf.

The Russos have been developing the series for some time. In an interview with Insider in 2018, they said it offered a “new concept of storytelling.”

“The concept of this show is international reach and how to tell a global story,” Joe told Insider at the time. “There will be a flagship show and a few subsidiary shows that will run in foreign language markets.”

“It plays a lot to the Marvel movies that we’ve made, which have such a global reach with passionate audiences around the world,” Anthony added. “We’ve spent the last two years interacting with these audiences. We’ve grown up with global cinema and we love global cinema. I think the idea of ​​communicating with a global audience has always appealed to us and now we’re doing it at on an ever-increasing scale.”

But the series has been plagued with behind-the-scenes drama, according to THR. Josh Appelbaum, its original showrunner, was fired from the series in December by Amazon over creative differences with the Russos, prompting others to leave, including director Brian Kirk, THR reported.

The Russos have enjoyed big budgets and creative freedom in recent years thanks to their Marvel success. “The Gray Man,” now Netflix’s fourth-biggest movie, cost $200 million to make.


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