The upsides to having a number of our favorite British drama staples on PBS such as Endeavour, Grantchester, Call the Midwife and Unforgotten be forced to delay production on their respective new series premieres for several months due to the UK filming shutdown are few and far between.
One such upside is that it gives both PBS and your local public television station the opportunity (and the timeslots) to seek out new and very deserving dramas that may or may not make it to this side of the pond for everyone to enjoy. One such drama series, coming to PBS’s Masterpiece series in the Spring of 2021 is Atlantic Crossing.
Based on the World War II relationship of Franklin D. Roosevelt and Norwegian Crown Princess Märtha, Atlantic Crossing tells the riveting and relatively unknown true story of Princess Märtha, who became an influential figure in world politics during World War II, after Norway was occupied by Nazi Germany in 1940. The show follows her journey from Norway to the White House where she was given refuge and became close to U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
The series tells the story about the war from a female perspective with two-time Emmy® nominee Kyle MacLachlan (Twin Peaks) starring as Roosevelt, opposite Swedish actress Sofia Helin (The Bridge) as the beautiful and politically astute Märtha, who flees the Nazis with her three young children and lives under Roosevelt’s increasingly doting protection.
Märtha tries hard to convince the President to help save her country and Europe from the Nazis. But Roosevelt does not want to alienate his voters, who are strongly opposed to being drawn into the war. Ultimately, Märtha realizes she must influence the American public to help her country.
The eight-part series ranges back and forth across the Atlantic as diplomacy, romance, and jealousy embroil Norwegians and Americans alike.
“I think the American audience will be surprised and amazed by Atlantic Crossing, a true story about love and devotion to country,” says Susanne Simpson, Executive Producer of Masterpiece. “We’re thrilled to present this show with incredible performances by Kyle MacLachlan and Sofia Helin.”
Atlantic Crossing director Alexander Eik adds: “I am both delighted and honored that PBS will feature Atlantic Crossing on Masterpiece. I could not wish for a better place to present this fascinating and previously untold real-life story, which merges American and European war history in a tale of the close relationship between America’s arguably greatest President and a European Crown Princess. Exiled from her homeland, Märtha finds herself as a private guest at the White House, where she soon gains political influence on President Roosevelt at a point in time where America is the only hope for the Allies in Europe in their fight against the Nazis. Soon it is evident that the princess’ influence on Roosevelt is not merely political, thrusting her into a struggle that pits her personal feelings against high politics – and even the outcome of the war.”
Atlantic Crossing will be a part of PBS’s Masterpiece 50th anniversary season in the Spring of 2021.