While Isaac has been working steadily in film for over a decade, his big breakout was the Coens’ “Inside Llewyn Davis” (2013) as an unsympathetic starving artist seeking redemption amid the 1960s New York folk scene. He won acclaim for last year’s late-breaking “A Most Violent Year,” his indie sci-fi “Ex Machina” continues to earn raves and before Isaac heads up the cast of December’s “Star Wars” sequel, he’ll be seen in HBO’s Summer miniseries “Show Me a Hero.” This will mark his first major TV project.
Created by “The Wire”‘s David Simon and directed by Oscar winner (and outspoken ex-Scientologist) Paul Haggis, the six-part miniseries explores home, race, community and politics in 1960s Yonkers, NY. Lifted from Lisa Belkin’s book, “Show Me a Hero” follows Isaac as a young mayor who’s court-ordered to build low-income housing in affluent white neighborhoods, a controversial decision that threatens to capsize his political career. Winona Ryder, Jim Belushi, Catherine Keener, Alfred Molina, LaTanya Richardson-Jackson and Bob Balaban also star in the miniseries, bowing on HBO August 16.
A prestige cable drama of such pedigree could easily earn Isaac kudos, just a few months before “Star Wars” makes the Guatemalan-born actor a household name. In 2016, he’ll be seen in “X-Men: Apocalypse.” It was inevitable that after “Llewyn Davis” and even his brief scene-stealing turn in “Drive” that the 36-year-old actor would make for strong studio material.
Also, check out Isaac as a handsome, not-to-be-trusted tour guide opposite Kirsten Dunst and Viggo Mortensen in last year’s Patricia Highsmith thriller “The Two Faces of January,” streaming on Netflix.