From Terence Winter, Emmy Award-winning writer of 'The Sopranos,' and Academy Award-winning director Martin Scorsese, 'Boardwalk Empire' is set in Atlantic City during Prohibition, when the sale of alcohol became illegal throughout the United States.
It was a time of change: women gained the right to vote, broadcast radio spread the news, young people ruled the world, and criminals became rich trafficking in illegal alcohol.
On the beach in southern New Jersey sits Atlantic City, a spectacular resort known as "The World's Playground," a place where rules don't apply. Massive hotels line its famous Boardwalk, along with nightclubs, amusement piers and entertainment to rival Broadway. For a few dollars, a working man can get away and live like a king -- legally or illegally.
The undisputed ruler of Atlantic City is Enoch "Nucky" Thompson, (Steve Buscemi) a political fixer and backroom dealer who is equal parts politician and gangster and equally comfortable in either role. Because of its strategic location on the seaboard, the town is a hub of activity for rum-runners, minutes from Philadelphia, hours from New York City and a day's drive from Chicago. And Nucky Thompson takes full advantage.
Nucky has carved out a niche for himself as the man to see for any illegal alcohol. He is an equal opportunity gangster, doing business with Lucky Luciano (Vincent Piazza), Al Capone (Stephen Graham), and Johnny Torrio (Greg Antonacci). He has survived all comers.
The show also stars Michael Kenneth Williams ('The Wire') as Chalky White, the leader of the city's African-American community, now in retreat; Michael Shannon as former federal agent Nelson Van Alden; Gretchen Mol as Gillian Darmody, an opportunistic ex-showgirl; Jeffrey Wright as Dr. Valentin Narcisse, a Harlem-based challenger to Nucky; Shea Whigham as Nucky's brother Eli; and Kelly Macdonald as Margaret, Nucky's estranged wife.
Created by Terence Winter, 'Boardwalk Empire' is executive produced by Terence Winter, Martin Scorsese, Tim Van Patten, Howard Korder, Gene Kelly, Stephen Levinson and Mark Wahlberg. Joe Iberti, Allen Coulter and Rick Yorn are producers.
'Boardwalk Empire' is inspired by the non-fiction book "Boardwalk Empire: The Birth, High Times and Corruption of Atlantic City" by Nelson Johnson.