‘The Blacklist’ ends its season in style with graphic novel-style animation

New Orleans Pelicans

(NBC) — Tonight, NBC’s acclaimed drama, “The Blacklist,” will end its seventh season in style — with a unique hybrid of live-action and graphic novel-style animation.

The season’s 19th episode, titled “The Kazanjian Brothers,” was midway into filming in New York when TV productions across the industry were halted due to COVID-19.

Looking to do something out of the box to finish the episode and close out the season, producers came up with an idea to add graphic novel-style animation that would incorporate with the already filmed live-action scenes.

“Part of what was exciting about was trying to figure out, what couldn’t we do if we were really shooting this? We had a scene that involved a helicopter and an escape,” said the show’s Executive Producer, Jon Bokenkamp. “In production, we never would have been able to do something as fun as what we were able to do in the episode.”

Cast members recorded dialogue from their homes for the animated scenes to ensure a seamless transition between the two styles as editors and animators complete their work remotely.

As for the plot of the season finale, the Task Force investigates an accountant who works for lucrative criminals in order to find the violent and thuggish brothers hired for his protection. Liz must make a momentous decision. And Reddington agrees to work with the FBI, on the condition he’ll only work with profiler Keen.

Watch “The Blacklist” at 8 p.m. tonight followed by “Dateline.”

About “The Blacklist”

Following the startling revelation that Raymond “Red” Reddington (James Spader) isn’t who he says he is, Elizabeth Keen (Megan Boone) is torn between the relationship she’s developed with the man assumed to be her father and her desire to get to the bottom of years of secrets and lies. Meanwhile, Red leads Liz and the FBI to some of the most strange and dangerous criminals yet, growing his empire and eliminating rivals in the process. All throughout, Liz and Red engage in an uneasy cat-and-mouse game in which lines will be crossed and the truth will be revealed.

“The Blacklist” also stars Diego Klattenhoff, Amir Arison, Mozhan Marnò, Hisham Tawfiq and Harry Lennix.

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