Some TV casting announcements we missed during the week…
– First, Ernie Hudson has been cast as on the Epix network original series “Graves,” a political satire produced by Lionsgate, which follows a former Commander in Chief Richard Graves (played by Nick Nolte), who, 25 years after his presidency, has the epiphany that his policies have damaged the country for decades and so, with his young assistant (Skylar Astin), he goes on a Don Quixote-like journey to right his administration’s wrongs just as his wife, the former First Lady, decides to follow her own political ambitions. Hudson will play Jacob Mann, a crucial member of the Graves Family for decades, who acts as the family fixer. While having helped them out of numerous sticky situations over the years, Jacob has come to be viewed as an Uncle by the children and relied upon by both the Former President and First Lady in almost every situation.
– Second, NBC has put in development a comedy from Kevin Barnett and Josh Rabinowitz, executive producers, head writers, and cast members of Tru TV’s sketch series “Friends of the People,” which recently wrapped its second season.
Written by the pair, the project is described as an odd couple story of two best friends (Rabinowitz, Barnett) who’ve worked hard their entire lives to reach the careers they’ve always wanted, and then realize everything they hate it where they are. So they quit their jobs to figure out what they really want and care about.
– Third, LisaGay Hamilton has landed a series regular role in the USA Network pilot “The Wilding,” which centers around the Hayes family – a typical, loving blended family seeking a fresh start after their 17-year-old daughter, Kayla, is released from a mental health institution following ten years of treatment. Their ideals are quickly threatened, however, when Kayla’s apparitions of the dead begin to haunt them once again. Hamilton will play Dr. Emily Bergom, pharmaceutical researcher and mother of three who becomes desperate to assert her sanity when she begins to experience auditory hallucinations that place her family and career in jeopardy.
– Next, Rachel Hilson has been cast as a series regular, opposite Nicole Byer, in the latter;s currently untitled MTV pilot. Hilson joins previously cast Kimrie Lewis-Davis. In the series, Byer plays a young adult who is forced to move in with her sister and four kids in the suburbs after causing a fire in her New York City apartment. Hilson will play Emily, the oldest of Sarah’s children, already well aware of the power of her considerable charms, and not afraid to flaunt what she’s got.
– Fifth, British actor Tosin Cole and newcomer Kiki Layne have joined the cast of Showtime’s Chicago-set drama pilot from Lena Waithe, Common, Clark Johnson and Aaron Kaplan. Written by writer-producer-actress Waithe, the untitled drama is described as a relevant, timely and distinctive coming-of-age story of a young African-American male in which just growing up can be a matter of life and death. Cole will play Brandon, whose mother (played by (Olivia Dawson) is an alcoholic and his brother Coogie is a criminal, but Brandon is a dishwasher at a fancy upscale restaurant, and hopes to pass the test to be an assistant cook. Layne will play Keisha, Kevin’s (Alex Henderson) older sister, who is also the current object of Emmett’s (Tequan Richmond) affection, and doesn’t much care about the fact that he already has three children by three other women.
– Sixth, Renee Elise Goldsberry has booked a series regular role in TV Land’s dark comedy pilot “I Shudder,” from writer Paul Rudnick, which centers on Elyot Vionnet (Hamish Linklater), an advocate of manners, style and common decency. Observing people committing heinous crimes of etiquette, he tries to counsel them from afar, inserting himself into their lives without an invitation. When the individuals he deems classless choose not to take his advice, they are met with terrible consequences. Goldsberry has signed up to play Lucy Wainscott, a lovely, high-spirited, down-to-earth woman. Although she was born rich, she lives a happier and more fulfilled life by driving an ambulance and helping anyone in need.
– And finally, Harold Perrineau is set to co-star in the USA Network pilot “Poor Richard’s Almanack,” from executive producer Jim Danger Gray (“Orange Is The New Black”), which moves between the present day and a possible future where characters have changed radically, as a cadre of heroes emerge as the new “Founding Fathers” after America is pushed to the brink of collapse. Perrineau will play Matt Monroe, the FBI Agent in charge after a terrorist attack on Philadelphia. Monroe’s search for the attack’s inside-man puts him on a crash course with Darwin Fischer, a former CIA field agent-turned-analyst (played by Sam Jaeger) and his schizophrenic sister (Jordan Hayes) embroiling them in a conspiracy that will shake the country to its core.
That’s all for now…!