‘The Nevers’: Joss Whedon Sets Main Cast for New HBO Sci-Fi Period Drama

Olivia Williams, James Norton, and Tom Riley join Laura Donnelly in Whedon's upcoming supernatural Victorian-era series.
Olivia WilliamsStarz 'Counterpart' TV show panel, TCA Winter Press Tour, Los Angeles, USA - 12 Jan 2018
Olivia Williams
David Buchan/Variety/Shutterstock

Joss Whedon’s newest series has its cast. On Tuesday, HBO announced the ensemble for the upcoming “The Nevers”, a sci-fi Victorian-era drama that sees a group of women dealing with some inexplicable abilities.

Among the new additions to the cast is Olivia Williams, who’ll be reuniting with Whedon after previously appearing in his most recent network series “Dollhouse”. Williams recently concluded her work on the canceled-too-early Starz espionage drama “Counterpart”, which featured her as a series regular. In “The Nevers” she’ll play Lavinia Bidlow, the proprietor of an orphanage where those with special powers — known as the “Touched” — gather.

James Norton also joins the cast as the operator behind a club and blackmailing ring who looks into various incidents related to the Touched. Norton will soon appear in another imminent period piece, Greta Gerwig’s adaptation of “Little Women”. Laura Donnelly was previously announced as the lead of the series, the volatile hero Amalia True.

Among the rest of the cast playing characters in Lavinia and Amalia’s respective orbits is: Tom Riley, Ann Skelly, Ben Chaplin, Pip Torrens, Zackary Momoh, and Amy Manson. Together, they help make up a group of detectives, doctors, and criminals who help build out the greater world of this Victorian neighborhood, where lines are often drawn between who is and isn’t an acceptable member of society.

It appears that Nick Frost will play one of the more ethically ambiguous characters of the series. As “The Beggar King,” he’ll be a criminal boss looking to help the efforts of Amalia and the Touched, if the price is right.

Alongside Rochelle Neil and Eleanor Tomlinson, “The Nevers” will also feature Denis O’Hare as a talented –  but most likely sadistic –  surgeon.

“The Nevers” is the first time that Whedon will serve as a showrunner on a series since the initial five seasons of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.” Longtime collaborators Jane Espenson and Doug Petrie will also serve as writers on the show. All three will join Bernie Caulfield as the series’ executive producers.

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