HBO has released a trailer for its new eight-episode drama series Industry from first-time creators Mickey Down and Konrad Kay.
Industry follows a group of young graduates competing for a limited number of permanent positions at a leading international bank in London. The show examines issues of gender, race and class in the workplace as the impressionable new employees begin to forge an identity within the pressure cooker environment of Pierpoint & Co.’s trading floor, where they were promised meritocracy, but hierarchy is king.
Industry offers an inside look at the cutthroat world of “high finance” as seen through the eyes of an outsider, Harper Stern (Herrold), a talented young woman from upstate New York. Having come to London to join the prestigious Pierpoint & Co., Harper will stop at nothing to prove herself the best hire in her graduate class, which is fueled by ambition — not to mention sex and drugs.
Harper’s drive intensifies as she finds herself surrounded by people born into privilege, like Yasmin (Abela) who, despite her background, faces her own challenges. Yasmin has had different expectations placed on her since childhood and is tired of being underestimated professionally. At Pierpoint, Harper and Yasmin need to prove their worth as professionals amongst their fellow grads.
One of their peers is Robert (Lawtey), who joins the bank from a working-class background, believing it a true meritocracy where putting on a suit will help distance himself from his past. In contrast, Robert’s roommate Gus (Jonsson) was built for institutions like Pierpoint, having come from Eton and Oxford, and sees it as another tick on a checklist that will lead him straight to Downing Street. Meanwhile, doe-eyed Hari (Rizwan) has dreamt of working in banking his whole life, dresses like a modern “master of the universe” and is determined to succeed no matter the cost.
In the hierarchical ecosystem of Pierpoint, the graduates look up to the Managing Directors whom they sit next to while those senior figures are secretly looking down fearfully, wondering who’s going to take their seat. On the sales desk, Managing Director Eric (Leung) is Pierpoint’s number one producer who sees Harper’s potential and takes her under his wing, while VP Daria (Mavor) is a great counterpoint to Eric’s aggressive sales strategy and shows Harper that there’s more than one way to be a salesperson.
Yasmin’s direct line manager on the foreign exchange desk is Kenny (MacNeill), a VP whose prejudices cloud his judgement of her merit. Meanwhile, Theo (Tudor) is a second-year research analyst whose irresistible charm and strong counter-consensus market calls make him a Pierpoint poster boy. The young recruits may be fresh out of university, but the demands and expectations of these mentors and the industry itself are sky-high. Ultimately, the grads are seduced into acting in ways they would not have expected, all while they try to figure out who they are.