by Roberto Saviano
|Screenplay by||Leonardo Fasoli|
|Country of origin||Italy|
|No. of episodes||8 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||48–66 minutes|
|Original release||14 February 2020 –|
March 6, 2020
ZeroZeroZero is an Italian crime drama television series created by Stefano Sollima, Leonardo Fasoli and Mauricio Katz for Sky Atlantic, Canal+ and Amazon Prime Video. It is based on the non-fiction book of the same name by Roberto Saviano, a study of the business around the drug cocaine, covering its movement across continents. The series stars Andrea Riseborough, Dane DeHaan and Gabriel Byrne as the American Lynwood family, controlling an international shipping company which acts as cocaine broker between Mexican and Italian organized crime. The series derives its name from the whitest, finest-milled type of wheat flour (000), which is "the nickname among narcotraffickers for the purest cocaine on the market."
The world premiere of ZeroZeroZero was on 5 September 2019 at the 76th Venice International Film Festival, where the first two episodes were screened out of competition. The series premiered on television on 14 February 2020 on Sky Atlantic in Italy. The series received generally favorable reviews.
The series follows the troubled journey of a large shipment of cocaine from Monterrey, Mexico to Gioia Tauro, Italy. The sellers are Mexican drug lords Enrique and Jacinto Leyra, who are aided in their criminal activities by Manuel Quinteras and his group of corrupt soldiers; the buyer is Don Minu La Piana, a boss of the 'Ndrangheta, whose position is challenged by his ambitious grandson Stefano and the Curtiga family; the brokers in charge of the shipment are the Lynwoods, an American family from New Orleans owning a prestigious shipping company. The infighting within the 'Ndrangheta causes the shipment to be rerouted to Morocco, and the delay has dramatic consequences for all the interested parties.
- Andrea Riseborough as Emma Lynwood, eldest daughter of Edward Lynwood, running the family's shipping company
- Dane DeHaan as Chris Lynwood, Emma's younger brother, affected by Huntington's disease
- Giuseppe De Domenico as Stefano La Piana, a member of the 'Ndrangheta
- Adriano Chiaramida as Don Damiano "Minu" La Piana, a boss of the 'Ndrangheta and Stefano's grandfather
- Harold Torres as Manuel Quinteras, a soldier of the Mexican Army, secretly working for the Leyra brothers
- Noé Hernández as Varas, a commander of the Mexican Army
- Tchéky Karyo as François Salvage, a captain working for the Lynwoods
- Francesco Colella as Italo Curtiga, Stefano's ally
- Diego Cataño as Chino, a soldier of the Mexican Army
- Norman Delgadillo as Diego, a loyal soldier of the Mexican Army
- Nika Perrone as Lucia, Stefano's wife
- Gabriel Byrne as Edward Lynwood, Chris and Emma's father and head of the family's shipping company
- Claudia Pineda as Chiquitita, Diego's wife
- Érick Israel Consuelo as Moko, a soldier of the Mexican Army
- Jesús Lozano as Gordo, a soldier of the Mexican Army
- José Salof as Indio, a soldier of the Mexican Army
- Flavio Medina as Jacinto Leyra, a Mexican narco
- Víctor Huggo Martín as Enrique Leyra, a Mexican narco and Jacinto's brother
- Seydina Baldé as Omar Gamby, Emma's fixer in Dakar
- Nabiha Akkari as Amina, daughter of Yasser, the Lynwoods' fixer in Casablanca, and Chris's love interest
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (March 2020)
- José Carlos Rodríguez as Pastor Jorge
- Mostefa Djadja as Yasser, the Lynwoods' fixer in Casablanca and Amina's father
|No.||Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date||Italy viewers|
|1||"The Shipment"||Stefano Sollima||Treatment by : Stefano Bises & Leonardo Fasoli & Roberto Saviano & Stefano Sollima|
Teleplay by : Leonardo Fasoli & Mauricio Katz & Stefano Sollima
|14 February 2020||0.41 (o.n.)|
|Italian mob boss Don Minu leaves his bunker. He goes to a meeting of mob family heads with his grandson, Stefano, and orders a cocaine shipment to revive their businesses and regain their trust. While collecting funds for the shipment, a loyalist of Don Minu is abducted by Stefano and fed to pigs; the money he collected is burned. In Monterrey, a special forces team track down a drug dealer to obtain the location of an upcoming meeting between the Leyras brothers and a broker. The special forces team surround the restaurant where the meeting is taking place. The Leyras brothers, Enrique and Jacinto, are alerted to the presence of the special forces team, and the meeting abruptly ends. As they are fleeing, Edward Lynwood, the broker, is shot. In a flashback, Edward and his daughter Emma negotiate the purchase of a large cargo ship. Emma's accountant alerts her that the money for the shipment has not come through yet. Emma and Edward discuss the risk of paying for the shipment upfront. Edward assures Emma that Don Minu will honor his word and send the money. Chris Lynwood, Emma's younger brother, attends a support group for people with Huntington's disease.|
|2||"Tampico Skies"||Stefano Sollima||Leonardo Fasoli & Mauricio Katz||14 February 2020||0.27 (o.n.)|
|3||"Miranda"||Janus Metz||Story by : Leonardo Fasoli & Mauricio Katz|
Teleplay by : Max Hurwitz
|21 February 2020||0.26 (o.n.)|
|Manuel and his squad form a partnership with the Leyras brothers. Chris discovers that someone on the ship sabotaged the engine. He alerts the captain who knocks him unconscious. He wakes to the ship in flames, which he is able to extinguish, but kills the ship's power and mobility in the process. A flashback shows Stefano offering the captain cash in exchange for sabotaging the ship. Don Minu reveals to Stefano that he killed his own son, Stefano's father, because he started the last war. Don Minu has Stefano's friend, Nicola, burnt alive as a final warning. Don Minu's place is ambushed, but Stefano helps him escape.|
|4||"Transshipment"||Janus Metz||Leonardo Fasoli & Mauricio Katz||21 February 2020||0.21 (o.n.)|
Manuel goes to pay his respects to the pregnant wife of Bunny. She tells Manuel that her dead husband respected him and wonders how Manuel let anyone claim that Bunny wasn't loyal. Manuel offers her a package of cash, which he lies was taken up in a collection by his team.
Chris is able to get the ship to Dakar, Senegal with the help of the coast guard and tries to reason with Senegalese officials to allow his cargo to continue on to Italy. He is informed that only after a customs inspection would they be able to move the cargo. Chris tries to get his anti-spasm drugs from a local pharmacy but is unable to purchase them because he needs a prescription. A street urchin takes him to a local crime lord from who Chris buys an alternative in the form of a mysterious green liquid, along with some weed.
Chris is reunited with Emma, and she apologizes for putting him in this situation. Emma is determined to get the cargo to Casablanca. She hires a local fixer, Omar, to assist. They bribe the port official, but he tells them that only after the approval of the higher-ranking customs official would the cargo be allowed to move out of the port. The customs official understands that the cargo contains something valuable and requires Emma to give up her ship to rescue her cargo. Senegalese police come to inspect the cargo; however, Omar is alert and asks for a warrant, delaying the inspection until the following day. In the middle of the night, Chris frantically wakes up Emma and tells her that police are coming to arrest them.In a flashback, it is shown that Chris offered a deal to the crime lord he met earlier in order to rescue the cargo. In the middle of the night, the crime lord and his men gain access to the cargo and load the cocaine into two trucks. The police are on their tail, but they manage to safely arrive at their hideout where the crime lord takes 50 kg of cocaine, as per their deal. Chris rushes back to his hotel and tells Emma that police are coming and that they have to leave immediately. Both of them run from the scene and arrive at their shipment. Furious at Chris for going behind her back, Emma reveals to him that their father actually never wanted Chris to get involved in the family business. Omar arrives with his men and they escort them out of Senegal via a back route, along with the two trucks ferrying the cocaine. In the car, Emma notices Chris's spasms and asks when they started.
|5||"Sharia"||Janus Metz||Story by : Leonardo Fasoli & Max Hurwitz & Mauricio Katz|
Teleplay by : Max Hurwitz
|28 February 2020||0.26 (o.n.)|
Chris and Emma's convoy is traveling through the Sahara Desert, and Chris admits to Emma that his spasms started a few months ago. The convoy soon approaches a town controlled by Jihadists. Omar speaks to one of the men and finds out that his contact was killed only the day before. The men demand 100 kg of cocaine in exchange for safe passage. Omar tells Emma that they have no other option, and they agree to their terms. The convoy carries on, now escorted by the armed Jihadists. They spend the night in the desert and the leader of the Jihadists has one of his men offer blankets to Emma and Chris. Later in the night, Emma looks on as the Jihadists purchase weapons, and Omar briefly explains the conflict between the French nationals and the Tuaregs to her.
When they arrive at one of the Jihadists' strongholds the following day, Chris is taken forcefully by a group of men. Emma panics, as they do not explain where they are taking him, and she too is taken and placed in a makeshift prison, where she is given food by female caretakers. The next day, she finds the prison door is left open and she creeps out the way she was taken in. She snoops around the house and sees a group of the Jihadists watching a newscast and celebrating an attack on French nationals. Scared, she quickly makes her way back to her cell and continues to wait in agony. She witnesses a commotion outside, and, soon after, Omar and a few other armed men appear outside her cell. Omar tells her that there has been a drone strike by the French nationals on the Jihadists who took Chris, which is what the previous commotion that Emma witnessed was regarding. Omar tells her that everyone is dead, including the Jihadist leader and Chris. Emma is distraught and refuses to believe the news. Omar must drag her out of the cell and he makes her aware of the direness of the situation, giving her a gun. Emma quickly calms herself and follows his orders. Outside, they are met with gunfire and take cover in a school building. Omar is shot, but his associates continue to return fire; however, they are greatly outnumbered and the Jihadists are quickly closing in. Suddenly, a car zooms onto the scene, halting the shootout, and the presumed dead Chris gets out with his hands up.
A flashback shows what happened to Chris after he was separated from Emma. The leader of the Jihadists, along with his associates, ride out into the desert. Midway, he gives his blessings to his son, who is presumably going on a suicide mission. Chris attempts to make conversation with the leader by asking him about his son, but the man rebukes him. After arriving close to a refugee camp, the leader tells Chris that his wife is inside the camp and that the guards allow only doctors to enter. Chris must pretend that he is a doctor in order for them to gain entry into the camp so that the leader can bless his newborn son. This plays out smoothly, and they begin their return journey. One the way back, Chris confides in the leader about his disease. He laments the fact that, although he can conceive a child, there would be a 50% chance that he would pass on the disease to them and that, even if the child doesn't carry his disease, they would have to watch their father die at a young age.Early in the morning, the convoy stops for their prayers while Chris watches from a distance before becoming engrossed in the happenings of a nearby lizard. Suddenly, the aforementioned drone strikes the praying group of men, killing nearly everyone. A dazed Chris, abandoned by the only other surviving member of the convoy, panics and gets into one of the cars. Just before driving away, he sees that the leader is alive but critically injured. He puts him in the car and speeds back to the stronghold, pulling up on the shootout. The Jihadists immediately direct all of their attention to their injured leader, and a younger guard allows Chris and Emma to leave, along with their cargo. Emma desperately tries to keep a critically wounded Omar alive, but he succumbs to his injuries shortly into the drive.
|6||"En el mismo camino"||Pablo Trapero||Story by : Leonardo Fasoli & Max Hurwitz & Mauricio Katz|
Teleplay by : Leonardo Fasoli & Max Hurwitz
|28 February 2020||0.26 (o.n.)|
Back in Mexico, Manuel gains control over some local drug lords and recruits a few hundred teenage boys for his army. His men take control of an abandoned factory and start a military-grade training camp for the new recruits, whom they call "vampires." Along with training, they are also brainwashed. The whole operation is well oiled, and soon Manuel has an army of lethal soldiers who are at his beck and call.
He pays periodic visits to Diego's widowed wife. His guilt continues to weigh on him and he continues to give her cash, which she now accepts congenially. She indirectly expresses her feelings for him by asking to go out with him, presumably for a date.
After the first contingent is trained, they are given a mission. They abduct a bus, line up all the passengers under a flyover, and kill them. They record the shooting and leave one person alive as an eyewitness to tell the media about their brutality. Later, Manuel takes Diego's wife to his church. She is visibly disturbed by the service and leaves midway, telling him that she was expecting a more pleasant type of outing.
Manuel meets with one of the Leyras brothers and gives him the collection from the sale of their drugs. When he reminds them that it's payday, the Leyras brother tells him that securing their drug business is burning a hole in their pockets and that a new consignment of weapons is coming; therefore, they will have to wait for their payment. Manuel is visibly upset but handles the situation calmly. His associate is furious and fears what they will tell their army. Manuel tells them that they're going to celebrate tonight by going out for an expensive restaurant for dinner, "where it all started." They have a good time at the restaurant, which is the same restaurant from the first two episodes, but when they are almost done with their dinner, the Leyras brothers arrive with their family. Manuel asks the waiter to send over three bottles of their most expensive champagne to the Leyras brothers, indirectly humiliating them.
After dropping his men off, Manuel decides to relieve his stress by taking Diego's wife out on a date. They go dancing, becoming more intimate. When Manuel is dropping her off, he receives several calls. She insists that he come in and stay with her until she falls asleep. When he leaves and finally answers his phone, he learns that one of his main men, Indio, has been badly injured. Manuel rushes back to the base.
In a flashback that shows what was happening while Manuel was with Diego's wife, Indio receives a call for the delivery of the weapons. The Leyras' men want Manuel there, but they cannot get hold of him, so they decide to carry out the mission on their own. They return to their base and wake up their army for the task. The weapons are inspected by Leyras' men. However, the tension that was built up between the Leyras' men and Manuel's army spills over from insults, and a gunfight ensues, killing Indio.Manuel takes the injured men to Diego's wife's home, where she and her family tend to the injured. Suddenly, her water breaks and Manuel rushes her to the hospital. He stands outside the room during the birth and is overwhelmed by emotions.
|7||"Family"||Pablo Trapero||Story by : Leonardo Fasoli & Max Hurwitz & Mauricio Katz|
Teleplay by : Leonardo Fasoli & Maddalena Ravagli
|6 March 2020||0.31 (o.n.)|
In the next scene, we see Lucia hurrying through a town with her son and some luggage. She meets with an older woman and gives her a coded message for Don Minu. Don Minu sends Bellantone to pick up Lucia and her son. Upon arriving at their destination, it is revealed that Bellantone and his men are working against Don Minu, and they beat Lucia and use her and her son as ransom to get Stefano to do their bidding. Bellantone and his men fly with Stefano to Casablanca, Morocco to track down the shipment.
In Casablanca, Bellantone, his men, and Stefano kidnap the daughter of the Lynwood's fixer, Amina, and use her to track down the Lynwoods and the shipment. She takes them to the apartment where the Lynwoods are staying and Chris answers the door.
A flashback shows what happened in the days leading up to this. The shipment is being prepared to be loaded onto another cargo ship bound for Gioia Tauro, Italy. The Lynwood's local fixer, Yasser, puts them up in a nice apartment in the city, which he promises is safe. He also tells them that his daughter will come by the next day with money from the customs officer as well as medication for Chris.
Chris wakes up later that evening to find that he has wet himself. Distraught, he breaks down in the bathroom and his comforted by Emma. Amina arrives the next day as promised with the money and the medication, and she and Chris are both taken with each other. Chris volunteers to accompany Amina to the customs office, seemingly to spend more time with her. The two hit it off and Chris experiences his attraction to her continue to grow.
Later that day, Emma and Chris have dinner together. Chris admits that he's never been in love, as he doesn't see the point in forming a relationship with someone given the complications of his disease. He mentions that Amina invited him to a party later that night, and the siblings decide to attend, as Emma picks up on the Chris's interest in Amina.
After the party, Chris goes home with Amina and the two have sex. He wakes up later in the night and he launches into a fit of rage over his frustration with his disease. He rebuffs Amina when she tries to comfort him and abruptly leaves.The next morning, Emma announces that she is going to go to the port alone to see the shipment off and that she'll be sending Chris home on the next flight to New Orleans. Chris is hurt, thinking that Emma is upset with him. Shortly after Emma leaves, Chris sulks around the apartment when he hears several sharp knocks at the door. He answers and is greeted by a frightened Amina as well as Bellantone, his men, and Stefano. They force him to take them to where the shipment is, and he stalls them, allowing the cargo to leave on time without issue. When Stefano realizes that Chris has led him on a wild goose chase, he badly beats Chris inside the warehouse and leaves him unconscious and bleeding on the ground. Bellantone tells Stefano that now Stefano must kill his grandfather.
|8||"Same Blood"||Pablo Trapero||Story by : Leonardo Fasoli & Max Hurwitz & Mauricio Katz|
Teleplay by : Leonardo Fasoli & Max Hurwitz
|6 March 2020||0.31 (o.n.)|
|In Monterrey, Diego's wife gives birth and Manuel admits to killing her husband. He leaves with his army to ambush a birthday party at the Leyras' home, slaughtering them and their men. Jacinto offers to bring $32 million to the house before Manuel kills him. Upon returning to Calabria, Bellantone forces Stefano to arrange a meeting with his grandfather for the assassination. When Stefano arrives at Don Minu's safe house, he is greeted by armed men and Emma. A flashback in Casablanca shows Emma finding Amina tied up, who reveals that the Italians took Chris to a warehouse; Emma finds Chris' body. Emma then flies to Calabria and tells Don Minu about Stefano's attempt to stop the shipment and that he murdered Chris. When Stefano arrives, Don Minu kills him and Emma gives him the location of the cocaine, as agreed. Don Minu's men kill Bellantone and his men, rescuing Lucia and her son. Emma arrives in Monterrey and receives the call from Jacinto. Upon arriving at the Leyras' home, she is escorted to Manuel through the carnage. She gives him the $32 million before asking if he can get her 2,000 kg of cocaine for another deal. He agrees and Emma leaves.|
The series premiered on 14 February 2020 on Sky Atlantic in Italy. It was released in its entirety on 6 March 2020 on Amazon Prime Video in the United States, Canada, Latin America and Spain. ZeroZeroZero premiered on 9 March 2020 on Canal+ in France, and on 26 March 2020 on Sky Atlantic in Germany and Austria. It premiered on 14 May 2020 on SBS and SBS On Demand in Australia. The series premiered on 4 February 2021 on Sky Atlantic in the United Kingdom and Ireland.
ZeroZeroZero has been well-received by critics. It has a 94% "fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with an average rating of 8/10, based on 34 reviews. The Critics Consensus states, "An addictive thriller whose greatest weakness is that it is at times too withholding, ZeroZeroZero will stick with you long after the credits roll. It holds a 75/100 rating on Metacritic based on 10 reviews, indicating "generally favorable" reviews.
Nick Allen of RogerEbert.com praised ZeroZeroZero as "the kind of thriller that makes such a deep impression because it can think big and small at the same time, uniting three gripping individual stories into one massive saga." Mike Hale of The New York Times characterized the show as a "three shows in one: an Italian mafia saga with rocky Calabrian hillsides and generational omertà; a Mexican narco thriller with lavish cartel violence; and, more improbably, an indie-movie-style American family drama and character study. The series toggles among the three stories, which are intimately connected but for the most part told separately, with occasional meetings that are invariably bad news for the characters involved." He compared the series unfavorably to the earlier Roberto Saviano-based series, Gomorrah, but praised the characterization and performances of Riseborough and DeHaan. Daniel Fienberg of The Hollywood Reporter wrote that ZeroZeroZero was "beautifully shot, but frustratingly limited on character," and adding that "genre familiarity may make ZeroZeroZero less fresh, but it remains quite watchable, if you can ignore its vaguely nihilistic streak, thanks to a good cast, confident direction and cinematography that's really quite stunning at times."
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- "ZeroZeroZero by Roberto Saviano: 9780143109372 | PenguinRandomHouse.com: Books". PenguinRandomhouse.com. Retrieved 2021-04-25.
- Rantala, Hanna (5 September 2019). "'ZeroZeroZero' takes bleak look at cocaine trade in Saviano book adaptation". Reuters. Retrieved 16 February 2020.
- Buonocore, Mattia (15 February 2020). "Ascolti TV – Venerdì 14 febbraio 2020. Boom Panariello, Conti, Pieraccioni (25.6%), GF Vip 18.7%. Crolla The Good Doctor 5.8%". DavideMaggio.it (in Italian). Retrieved 16 February 2020.
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- Allen, Nick. "TV/Streaming: Amazon Prime's Addictive Thriller ZeroZeroZero Depicts a Global Drug Deal Gone Wrong," RogerEbert.com (March 05, 2020).
- Hale, Mike. "Missing ‘Gomorrah'? Watch This: While we wait for new seasons of TV's best mafia drama, Amazon Prime Video offers a reasonable facsimile with the globe-trotting thriller 'Zerozerozero,'" The New York Times (March 5, 2020).
- Fienberg, Daniel. "TV: 'ZeroZeroZero': TV Review," The Hollywood Reporter (March 6, 2020).
- Ede, Christiane. "Mogwai To Release 'ZeroZeroZero' Soundtrack". The Quietus. Retrieved 1 May 2020.