Saturday, 18 April 2015

AMC's PREACHER casts its unholy trinity

Saturday, 18 April 2015

The cable network's adaptation of PREACHER, the notoriously vulgar and blasphemous 1990s comic-book, has cast its three leads, and they're a very intriguing lineup. Dominic Cooper (Agent Carter) has taken the lead as disaffected preacher Jesse Custer, who has the ability to verbally impose his will on people; Ruth Negga (Agents of SHIELD) will play Jesse's crack-shot girlfriend Tulip O'Hare; and Joseph Gilgun (Misfits) has been cast as alcoholic Irish vampire Cassidy. In addition, Ian Colletti is set to play supporting character Eugene Root, aka 'Arseface' (so-named because an unfortunate firearm accident disfigures him), Elisabeth Perkins (Weeds) has joined the lineup as Vyla Quinncannon (a scheming businesswomen connected to Jesse), and Lucy Griffiths (Robin Hood, True Blood) has been cast as Emily Woodrow (a no-nonsense mother of three who becomes Jesse's advisor).

This is a strange and rather unexpected mix of non-American actors! I wouldn't have predicted any of them. The oddest casting is undoubtedly Ruth Negga as Tulip, simply because the character in the comic was based on '90s-era Cameron Diaz, so I assumed they'd be going for whomever the closest TV equivalent is today. But I'm happy with this change, because Negga's fantastic and it's good to add some ethnic diversity into the comic. The new Tulip's background may come into play with some of the racist rednecks that populate the story, too.

Cooper has a loose similarity to Jesse Custer from the page, but isn't as tall and I was expecting someone… edgier? I did see Cooper in The Devil's Double (where he played Saddam Hussein's son Uday, and his double Latif Yahia), so he's certainly had crazier roles. It's just that Jesse's a world away from his other comic-book role as Howard Stark on TV's Agent Carter and Captain America.

Lastly, there's the surprise casting of Joseph Gilgun—best-known as Rudy on E4's superhero drama Misfits, but also for his award-winning role in This is England and its TV spinoff. I have no idea how good Gilgun's Irish accent is, but he's appropriately gaunt and will certainly bring manic energy to the role. You can see him in The Last Witch Hunter alongside Vin Diesel soon, too.

No word yet on who's playing prominent villain "The Saint of Killers" (an undead soldier who's invulnerable and never misses a shot), although it's a role tailor-made for Clancy Brown—who doesn't seem to be doing too much right now. Or certainly someone of that type.