Julia Roberts is headed to television in the form of Amazon’s new psychological thriller Homecoming, which has gotten a suitably twisty and confounding new trailer. The series is co-created by Mr. Robot’s Sam Esmail and is based on a podcast of the same name from Eli Horowitz and Micah Bloomberg, making this one of the latest streaming series to have first come to life in such a relatively new format. In addition to serving as co-creator and executive producer, Esmail will direct all the episodes of the first season.
Along with Roberts, the series boasts an impressive cast that includes Sissy Spacek, Dermot Mulroney, Bobby Cannavale, Frankie Shaw, Shae Whigham, Alex Karpovsky, and Marianne Jean-Baptiste. Roberts plays Heidi Bergman who once worked to help military servicemen and women acclimate back into society after being deployed. As simple as that sounds, there’s something nefarious going on, which, in keeping with Esmail’s hit USA series, appears geared toward making the characters (and the audience) question what’s real and what isn’t.
The trailer does a terrific job of showcasing Esmail’s directing style, and generating ominous portent through a series of creepily repeated lines of dialogue and swirling images of (of all things) staircases. Roberts appears well suited to the role, although there’s not a whole lot to go on aside from the presence of heavy atmosphere and the resulting tension. Check out the trailer and a full synopsis below:
“Heidi Bergman (Roberts) is a caseworker at the Homecoming Transitional Support Center, a Geist Group facility helping soldiers transition back to civilian life. Walter Cruz (Stephan James) is one of these soldiers, eager to begin the next phase of his life. Overseeing Heidi and the facility is Colin Belfast (Bobby Cannavale), an ambitious company man whose manic demands point to questionable motives.
Four years later, Heidi has started a new life, living with her mother (Sissy Spacek) and working as a small-town waitress, when a Department of Defense auditor (Shea Whigham) comes to her with questions about why she left the Homecoming facility. Heidi begins to realize that there’s a whole other story behind the story she’s been telling herself.”
Interestingly, Homecoming is a half-hour drama, a format that’s become increasingly popular with shows like Starz’ Sweetbitter and Vida, as well as FX’s upcoming Mr. Inbetween. Esmail said that format would help hook the audience better, as Homecoming is apparently filled with several cliffhangers. With the premiere set for early November, it will be interesting to see what Esmail and Roberts have cooked up, and if the series can live up to this tension-filled trailer.
Homecoming premieres Friday, November 2 on Amazon Prime Video.