In November 1983, six armed robbers burst into the Brink’s-Mat warehouse near Heathrow hoping to steal $1.2 million in foreign currency. While some of the gang doused the guards in petrol, the leader noticed a huge pile of gray boxes stacked on the floor. He opened one and found a gold bullion inside. With that, British crime and policing changed forever: the crooks drove off with 6,114 pounds of gold, worth roughly $123 million today. The Brink’s-Mat heist flooded the country with illicit gold, sparked two decades of bloodshed, and ushered in a new age of white-collar crime and financial fraud. The Gold, a new BBC drama starring Hugh Bonneville, Dominic Cooper, and Charlotte Spencer, uses the Brink’s-Mat story to change the way British robberies are typically filmed—thanks in large part to the writer Neil Forsyth, who breaks all the rules of screen heists. The looting is over before the title credits. It’s what happens next that fascinates him. —Stephen Armstrong
The Gold is available for streaming on Paramount+ in the U.S. and BBC One in the U.K.