The Blacklist is an American crime thriller television series that premiered on NBC on September 23, 2013. Raymond "Red" Reddington (James Spader), a former U.S. Navy officer turned high-profile criminal, voluntarily surrenders to the FBI after eluding capture for decades. He tells the FBI that he has a list of the most dangerous criminals in the world that he has compiled over the years and is willing to inform on their operations in exchange for immunity from prosecution. However, he insists on working exclusively with a rookie FBI profiler by the name of Elizabeth Keen (Megan Boone). The series also stars Diego Klattenhoff, Ryan Eggold, and Harry Lennix. The pilot episode was written by Jon Bokenkamp and directed by Joe Carnahan. Executive producers for the series include Bokenkamp, John Eisendrath, and John Davis for Sony Pictures Television, Universal Television, and Davis Entertainment.On October 4, 2013, NBC ordered nine additional episodes, filling out the series' first season. On December 3, 2013, NBC renewed the series for a 22-episode second season. On May 11, 2014, owing to the series' breakout success, NBC decided to air an episode in the coveted post-Super Bowl timeslot in 2015. On December 5, 2015, the series was renewed for a fourth season, which premiered on September 22, 2016. A spin-off series, The Blacklist: Redemption, premiered on February 23, 2017. On May 11, 2017, the series was renewed for a fifth season, while the spin-off was canceled the following day. The fifth season is set to premiere on September 27, 2017.The series has received positive reviews, with many critics praising Spader's performance in particular.