Citadel Trailer: Richard Madden Leads Prime Video's Ambitious Spy Thriller Series From The Russo Brothers

Prime Video has released the first trailer for "Citadel," its long-gestating spy action thriller series, executive produced by Joe and Anthony Russo and starring Richard Madden and Priyanka Chopra Jonas. All four creatives were on hand with showrunner David Weil for a virtual press conference, which doubled as a trailer launch event, live from Los Angeles today.

It's been a long road for "Citadel" to the small screen, and along the way, the series has racked up one of the biggest budgets of any TV show ever made. This is nothing new for Prime Video, which also spent almost half a billion dollars on season 1 of "The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power." However, "Citadel" is attempting to create a new global franchise, with this first seven-episode series, led by Madden and Chopra, kicking off a slate of international spin-offs set in places like India, Italy, and Mexico. It almost sounds like a version of what Netflix has done with its procedural "Criminal," but with more interconnectivity.

We first heard about the development of "Citadel" through the Television Critics Association back in 2018, when the Russo brothers sent in a video promoting it from the set "Avengers: Endgame" (which, of course, would go on to become the second highest-grossing film of all time). Even before it settled on a title, ambitions for "Citadel" were already high, with Prime Video describing it as a "mothership series" that "will function as a fire-starter to ignite the creation of multiple original local language and local production series." The show is said to have been a passion project for Jennifer Salke, the head of Amazon Studios, who helped see it across the finish line with a final price tag of over $200 million.

Watch the Citadel trailer

"Citadel" is eventually meant to unite characters from different countries and shows in a shared spy mission, like "The Avengers," minus the superpowers. This is par for the course with executive producers Joe and Anthony Russo.

Since graduating from the Marvel Cinematic Universe in 2019 with "Avengers: Endgame," the Russos have continued producing, writing, and/or directing projects for various MCU actors, including the late Chadwick Boseman ("21 Bridges"), Chris Hemsworth ("Extraction"), Tom Holland ("Cherry"), and most recently, Chris Evans ("The Gray Man"). "Extraction 2" is already in the pipeline, and the Russos have got big plans for "The Gray Man" as well, with a sequel and spin-off in development. "Extraction" and "The Gray Man" both went straight to Netflix basically (with the latter film only having a limited theatrical release one week beforehand), so streaming action thrillers like "Citadel" are very much in the Russos' wheelhouse post-"Endgame."

Richard Madden ("Game of Thrones," "Eternals") also knows his way around the genre after starring in the BBC One and Netflix political thriller "Bodyguard." With "Citadel," he and Priyanka Chopra Jones are now at the center of a project that appears to be following the shared-universe model of the MCU in the hopes of giving Prime Video a new flagship series.

Will it be any good beyond this trailer? We'll have to wait and see. Prime Video was reportedly less than thrilled with the early footage for "Citadel," which led to reshoots and the departure of some of the original creative team, including showrunner Josh Appelbaum, director Brian Kirk, and producer Sarah Bradshaw. David Weil, who recently wrapped the second and final season of "Hunters" for Prime Video, stepped in to replace Appelbaum.

Hopefully, all the money Prime Video has spent on this project won't go to waste.