Atlantic City, 1931: As the country struggles to cope with the Great Depression and the end of Prohibition looms, Nucky Thompson looks to legitimise himself through alliances with liquor producers, while rivals Lucky Luciano and Meyer Lansky seek to consolidate their power in the wake of Arnold Rothstein's death and eliminate all competition – by any means necessary.
From Terence Winter, Emmy-winning writer of The Sopranos and Academy Award-winning director Martin Scorsese, Boardwalk Empire is set in the Prohibition era and chronicles the life and times of Enoch "Nucky" Thompson, the leader of Atlantic City.
The first four seasons took place during the 1920s. In the final season, which takes place in the depths of the Depression in 1931, Nucky recalls his Atlantic City roots and plots a post-Prohibition future.
Season 5 stars Steve Buscemi as Nucky Thompson; Kelly Macdonald as Margaret, Nucky's estranged wife; Michael Shannon as former Federal Agent Nelson Van Alden, caught up in gangland conflicts; Shea Whigham as Nucky's brother Eli, who went underground after killing a federal agent; Stephen Graham as gangster Al Capone; Vincent Piazza as gangster Lucky Luciano; Paul Sparks as gangster Mickey Doyle; Michael Kenneth Williams as Nucky's former ally Chalky White; Gretchen Mol as Gillian, now battling her demons; and Jeffrey Wright as Valentin Narcisse, Chalky's nemesis.
Other returning cast members in Season 5 include Anatol Yusef as gangster Meyer Lansky; Ben Rosenfield as Eli's son, Willie Thompson, now a young prosecutor on the rise; Patricia Arquette as Nucky's ally, Sally Wheet, now based in Cuba; and Michael Zegen as gangster Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel.
New cast members include Jim True-Frost as crimefighter Eliot Ness; Matt Letscher as wealthy, politically connected businessman Joseph Kennedy; Giampiero Judica as Salvatore Maranzano, the "boss of all bosses"; and Louis Cancelmi as Capone enforcer Mike D'Angelo.
In the first episode of the fifth and final season:
Nucky is awash in memories from pier-boy days growing up in 1884 Atlantic City, when the young Nucky (Nolan Lyons) caught the eye of the Commodore (John Ellison Conlee).
In 1931 Cuba, Nucky joins Sally Wheet and, with a U.S. Senator in tow, forges ties with Bacardi Rum in hopes of Prohibition's repeal in the U.S.
Working on Wall Street, Margaret finds herself in the hot seat when her boss, facing an internal investigation, decides his own future.
Down but never out, Chalky seizes an opportunity to extricate himself from a difficult situation. In New York, Lucky Luciano sets in motion a bold plan that reverberates all the way to Nucky in Cuba.
Created by Terence Winter, Boardwalk Empire is executive produced by Terence Winter, Martin Scorsese, Mark Wahlberg, Stephen Levinson, Tim Van Patten, Howard Korder and Eugene Kelly; producers, Joseph E. Iberti, Rick Yorn and Allen Coulter.