EXCLUSIVE: Emmy winner Claire Danes is in talks for the female lead in Showtime’s drama pilot Homeland. The psychological thriller, from former 24 executive producer/showrunner Howard Gordon, would mark Danes’ first series gig since her star-making turn on ABC’s My So-Called Life 15 years ago, which earned her a Golden Globe award and an Emmy nomination. Michael Cuesta (Dexter) is directing Homeland, which is produced by Fox 21. Based on the Israeli format Hatufim aka Prisoners of War, it tells the story of an U.S. Marine Sergeant Scott Brody who is recovered during a drone strike 10 years after going missing during the invasion of Baghdad. It centers on Carrie Anderson – the role that Danes would play – a smart, driven and iconoclastic CIA case officer who tracks down threats to homeland security coming from the Middle East. She receives a tip from an informant that the American POW enjoying a hero’s welcome home has been turned and he is leading the next big strike against the American homeland. The series chronicles Anderson’s efforts to expose Brody and uncover the truth.

Homeland, the first pilot greenlighted by new Showtime entertainment president David Nevins, was written on spec by Gordon, fellow 24 executive producer Alex Gansa and Gideon Raff, the creator of the original series. The three are executive producing with Avi Nir and Ron Telem. After focusing exclusively on features for the past 15 years, Danes ventured into TV as the lead of this year’s acclaimed HBO biopic Temple Grandin, which earned her an Emmy Award.