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Five Days At Memorial — release date, cast, plot, trailer and all about the Hurricane Katrina drama

Five Days At Memorial on Apple TV+ stars Vera Farmiga as Dr Anna Pou helping patients during the Hurricane Katrina disaster.
Five Days At Memorial on Apple TV+ stars Vera Farmiga as Dr Anna Pou helping patients during the Hurricane Katrina disaster. (Image credit: Apple TV+)

Five Days At Memorial on Apple TV Plus is a drama that reveals the real-life struggles of care workers at the Memorial Medical Center in New Orleans, which saw thousands trapped inside after Hurricane Katrina decimated the gulf coast of America in 2005. 

Based on the best-selling book Five Days At Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm-Ravaged Hospital (opens in new tab), the drama shows how as the floodwaters rose, supplies ran out and power failed, the exhausted caregivers were forced to make decisions that would haunt them for years to come. Starring Bates Motel's Vera Farmiga and Succession’s Cherry Jones, it follows many of the staff at this New Orleans hospital as they try to save lives against the odds. 

Five Days at Memorial is executive produced and written by Emmy Award winner Carlton Cuse and Academy Award winner John Ridley, plus the series is directed by Cuse, Ridley and Wendey Stanzler (For All Mankind, Dispatches From Elsewhere).

So here's everything you need to know about Five Days At Memorial on Apple TV Plus...

That sinking feeling... Five Days At Memorial depicts the horrors of Hurricane Katrina.

That sinking feeling... Five Days At Memorial depicts the horrors of Hurricane Katrina. (Image credit: Apple TV+)

Five Days At Memorial release date

Five Days At Memorial is an eight-part drama and the first three episodes will premiere worldwide on Apple TV Plus on Friday, August 12. These will be followed by new episodes weekly every Friday throughout August up until September 16, 2022. 

Is there a trailer for Five Days At Memorial? 

Yes an official trailer has been released for Five Days At Memorial. We see the terrible impact Hurricane Katrina had on the city of New Orleans in 2005 and how 45 patients at the hospital died in horrific conditions as a result. Take a look here and below it the first teaser trailer...

Five Days At Memorial plot 

Five Days At Memorial follows those who struggled both to survive and to save lives amid the chaos in the Memorial Medical Center in New Orleans during the five days after Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Thousands of people were trapped inside the building as the temperatures rose, food and water ran out and terrible decisions about who should receive care had to be made. 

Dr Anna Pou (Farmiga) and her colleagues battle to save ailing patients amid rising floodwaters and soaring temperatures but, when back-up generators fail and the hospital loses power, they’re forced to make heartbreaking decisions regarding patient care. in the end, 45 patients died and the series unpicks the mystery of what happened over those five days and how rationing led to t staff making unthinkable choices. 

Dr Anna Pou looks on in horror at the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina.

Dr Anna Pou looks on in horror at the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina. (Image credit: Apple TV+)

Five Days At Memorial cast — Vera Farmiga on playing Dr Anna Pou

Vera Farmiga heads up the cast playing Dr Anna Pou. "Anna is the epitome of a good doctor," says Farmiga, 48. "When everything falls apart at Memorial, she steps up and quietly takes charge, choosing to stay and look after her patients. But on day three, the generators fail, which means no air conditioning, no ventilators and no monitors to help keep patients alive. Anna is incredulous over the lack of contingency and rescue plans. A helicopter and a boat show up, but they can only evacuate a few patients at a time."

Vera’s also starred in the series Bates Motel, Hawkeye, The Conjuring, The Boy in The Striped Pyjamas and The Departed, plus UC: Undercover, The Manchurian Candidate and Touching Evil.

Vera Farmiga as Norma Bates in Bates Motel.

Vera Farmiga as Norma Bates in Bates Motel. (Image credit: AMC)

Who else is starring?

Succession star Cherry Jones plays Susan Mulderick while Mean Girls’ Sharron Matthews is Cheri Landry. Robert Pine (CHiPs) and Julie Ann Emery (Better Call Saul) also star. Cornelius Smith Jr., Adepero Oduye, Molly Hager, Michael Gaston and W. Earl Brown round out the cast.

Cherry Jones as Susan Mulderick.

Cherry Jones as Susan Mulderick. (Image credit: Apple TV+)

More about Five Days At Memorial...

Award-winning directors John Ridley (12 Years a Slave) and Carlton Cuse (Lost) created the series, which also explores the allegations of euthanasia when 45 bodies were found in the hospital chapel after the crisis passed. 

"It was a big number, but initially it seemed within the realm of possibility, given how severe Katrina was," says Cuse, 63. ‘But investigators discovered that maybe there was more there than meets the eye. In their minds, that constituted criminal behaviour, which must have consequences. However, we wanted to take the same approach as Sheri Fink’s book by presenting all sides and leaving viewers to decide how they feel."

More guides to big shows on Apple TV Plus...

Nicholas Cannon
Nicholas Cannon

I'm a huge fan of television so I really have found the perfect job, as I've been writing about TV shows, films and interviewing major television, film and sports stars for over 25 years. I'm currently TV Content Director on What's On TV, TV Times, TV and Satellite Week magazines plus Whattowatch.com. I previously worked on Woman and Woman's Own in the 1990s. Outside of work I swim every morning, support Charlton Athletic football club and get nostalgic about TV shows Cagney & Lacey, I Claudius, Dallas and Tenko. I'm totally on top of everything good coming up too.