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Casting News Round-up: Danny Glover, Tory Kittles, Brandon P. Bell & Carl Lumbly Book Roles

Casting News Round-up: Danny Glover, Tory Kittles, Brandon P. Bell & Carl Lumbly Book Roles

Some casting news you can use…

First, Danny Glover has joined the cast of the Canadian indie thriller “Gridlocked,” which stars Dominic Purcell as a former SWAT leader being shadowed by a movie star with quite an ego, played by Cody Hackman. Glover will play a police chief in the film, which will be directed by Allan Ungar, from a script penned by Ungar and Rob Robol, with Hackybox Pictures producing. Vinnie Jones and Stephen Lang round out the film’s key cast, with principal photography set to begin later this month, in Toronto and London.

Next, Tory Kittles has joined the cast of HBO’s Bessie Smith biopic, which stars Queen Latifah and is written and will be directed by Dee Rees. Kittles will play Bessie’s brother Clarence. He joins a cast that includes Michael K. Williams, Tika Sumpter, Charles S. Dutton, Mike Epps, as well as Mo’Nique and Khandi Alexander. Oliver Platt and Bryan Greenberg are also cast members. The film will be a biography of Bessie Smith, considered by many to be the greatest blues singer of all time. It will debunk many of the myths that have circulated about her since her untimely death in 1937. HBO, The Zanuck Company, Shelby Stone Productions and Latifah’s Flavor Unit Entertainment are all backers of the project, with production underway in Atlanta.

Brandon P. Bell will co-star alongside Tricia Helfer, Brian Van Holt, Tiffany Lonsdale and Jacqueline Byers in Syfy‘s 6-hour miniseries “Ascension,” which is set aboard the starship Ascension, and follows hundreds of men, women and children sent on a covert, century-long mission to populate a new world. But as they approach the point of no return 50 years into the journey, the murder of a young woman causes the ship’s population to question the true nature of their mission. Brandon P Bell has signed up to play the confident and capable First Officer Oren Gault, who was born to maintenance workers on the lower decks. An honest and extremely capable Executive Officer, his mettle is tested when he’s ordered to investigate the murder of a young girl, a job for which Gault thinks he is wholly unprepared.

And finally, Carl Lumbly has joined the ensemble cast of the 10-episode suspense series “The Returned,” which is based on the French series by Fabrice Gobert, The Returned focuses on a small town that is turned upside down when several local people, who have long been presumed dead, suddenly reappear, bringing them into positive and detrimental consequences. Lumbly will play Pastor Leon Wright, a kindly, perceptive man, the minister of a local church. Radiating compassion, he tries to guide Rowan (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) through difficult times. Mark Pellegrino, Jeremy Sisto, Kevin Alejandro, Agnes Bruckner, Sophie Lowe, Sandrine Holt, Michelle Forbes, Tandi Wright, India Ennenga and Mat Vairo also star in the A+E Studios/FremantleMedia North America production.

That’s all for now…

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