TV Talk

Ricky Whittle Cast in American Gods, and Other TV News

by | January 28, 2016 | Comments

This week in TV news, American Gods has found its Shadow Moon, Harrison Ford will host a TV special about Disney’s Star Wars Land, Kit Harington knows nothing about Jon Snow, and more!


The 100 -- "Resurrection" -- Image: HU213B_0422 -- Pictured: Ricky Whittle as Lincoln -- Photo: Cate Cameron/The CW -- © 2015 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved

Neil Gaiman’s beloved fantasy novel American Gods, which is being adapted for television by Bryan Fuller and Michael Green for Starz, has found it’s Shadow Moon!  Ricky Whittle has been cast in the lead role, and Gaiman couldn’t be happier. In a statement to press he said, “I’m thrilled that Ricky has been cast as Shadow. His auditions were remarkable. The process of taking a world out of the pages of a book, and putting it onto the screen has begun. American Gods is, at its heart, a book about immigrants, and it seems perfectly appropriate that Shadow will, like so much else, be Coming to America. I’m delighted Ricky will get to embody Shadow. Now the fun starts.” The British-born actor is presently a series regular on CW’s drama, The 100, and also appeared on NCIS, Mistresses, and in the movie Austenland. Now it’s time to find Mr. Wednesday!


dis - solo
 Harrison Ford will introduce the Star Wars Land theme park expansions at Disneyland and Walt Disney World as part of The Wonderful World of Disney: Disneyland 60 special. Dancing with the Stars champion Derek Hough will host the celebratory special which, aside from unveiling some of the park plans, will also include such guests as actor Josh Gad, fellow DWTS pro Witney Carson, and Elton John, who will be debuting a new song called “Wonderful Crazy Night.” Also reported, Gad will present a tour of Walt Disney’s private apartment and the Disneyland Dream Suite, while Hough and Carson will perform dance tributes to music from key Disney titles. The special will air Sunday, Feb. 21 on ABC.


After being ordered straight to series last year by Oprah Winfrey’s OWN Network, pre-production on Selma director Ava DuVernay’s first television series Queen Sugar is moving forward. Last week True Blood regular Rutina Wesley was cast in the lead role, with DuVernay announcing this week that the series will have an all-women directorial team. Although no names are attached yet, DuVernay did reveal many of the directors come from the “black independent film space.” DuVernay also announced on Twitter that Omar Dorsey (Battle Creek),  (Star Wars: The Clone Wars), and Kofi Siriboe (Awkward) have also joined the cast. Queen Sugar follows a woman who relocates with her teenage daughter from Los Angeles to Louisiana to claim an inheritance — an 800-acre sugarcane farm.


Corey Hawkins!
Corey Hawkins, whose Dr. Dre portrayal in Straight Outta Compton has won him accolades, has been cast in the leading role of Eric Carter in the new 24 revival series.  This is 24: Legacy and will center on a new journey for military hero Carter who has returned home only to discover trouble has followed him back to the U.S.  In order to save his life and to impede a possible terrorist attack on the US, Carter must enlist the help of our favorite behind the scenes heroes… the CTU, whose former head officer will be played by Miranda Otto of Lord of the Rings fame.

Also in casting news, Miley Cyrus has been cast alongside Elaine May as the stars of the new as-of-yet untitled Woody Allen TV series for Amazon. There is no drop date yet for the series, but be on the lookout for more on that front soon.


TV STILL -- DO NOT PURGE -- episode 510 -- GAME OF THRONES, titled "Mother’s Mercy." Pictured: Kit Harington as Jon Snow Photographer: HBO
In a recent interview with BBC News, Kit Harington suggested that Game of Thrones fans shouldn’t get their hopes up, and assured everyone that his beloved character, Jon Snow, “…is dead, I’m afraid.” But the internet seems to think that the young wolf doth protest too much. Paparazzi photos of Harrington on the set of Game of Thrones have fueled the flames of Jon Snow’s much speculated survival. We’ll just have to wait and see. Game of Thrones season six returns on April 24th.
  • Andrew Zink

    “American Gods” was a massive disappointment. It has an incredibly interesting, unique premise, and it lives off the strength of the idea alone. Unfortunately, the author does NOTHING with it. 80% of the book doesn’t have a thing to do with the actual plot-line, and the small percentage that does is just bland. There is a great twist at the end, but it’s way too little, way too late. I only wish a talented author had the inspiration first. It could have been something great. Instead its just…. blah. Maybe a great screenwriter can save it, but they will have to make some massive wholesale changes.

    • Ciaran McGovern

      you sir don’t know what your talking about. N. Gaiman’s book is awesome. He’s a great writer. Way under estimated by your standards. i have read everything Neil’s written and what can i say. Dude is just great. Writing skills so far beyond the normal crap out there. Every bit chapter, paragraph and sentence perfectly structured.
      Like a fine wine to be enjoyed. a writer for all ages to enjoy. as deep as you want it to be…
      Your critique of Gaiman is so very wrong.
      Great so see American Gods coming to the screen. Casting so far is perfect.

      • Andrew Zink

        How many American Gods are actually depicted and participate in the book, Ciaran, prior to the very end when there suddenly appear to be dozens all acting like a mob? Two? How many scenes are they actually a part of? Three? Like I said, an awesome, unique idea that is almost completely wasted. American Gods is a love/hate piece of work–there are those like yourself who love it (and Gaiman), and those who see it as a wild, flailing, aimless work where a huge majority of content is the main character living out a life in a small town completely removed from the overall plot. Even the author admits to the heavy polarizing effect of it (read the preface of the 10th anniversary edition). There is hope for the TV adaptation–they won’t have time for all of the meaningless aspects of the book, and will have to actually focus on the story. If only Gaiman had done the same.

        • Han YOLO

          I’ll find some middle ground between the two of you. I love just about every book Neil has written, but American Gods was the only one I felt a slight disappointment in. He is an extremely talented writer and I am always looking forward to his new releases. I can understand why some didn’t appreciate this book, however I don’t think anyone could simply state he is not talented.

          • Andrew Zink

            I’ll be honest, I haven’t read anything else of his after being so disappointed in American Gods. As mentioned a couple of times before, I think the idea behind the book was really something unique and special, but the fact he did so little with it left me uninspired to spend the time to read another of his books.

    • Kyle Smeby

      While I think you’re point may be worded a little too strongly, I agree with where you’re coming from. I prefer Neverwhere and even Anansi Boys, to American Gods. I love Gaiman for his big ideas, my problem with him, is he just can’t write action at all. The climax of both American Gods and Neverwhere are continually built up to epic proportions and when they happen they are so underwhelming. At least Anansi Boys spared us the big build up to an action based climax, and kept it conceptual and intellectual, where Gaiman excels.

  • Ben Humphreys

    Loved the book! Hoping the show runners will do it justice.

  • Frank Rauen

    American Gods is one of my all time favorite books, I like the weird fusion of fantasy and Kerouac road trip stylings. I don’t remember if Shadow’s ethnicity is ever brought up in the book, but I don’t remember it playing any real part in the story, and Ricky Whittle looks exactly how I would imagine Shadow, big and burly along with a bit of an aloof confidence, so hopefully they will get this damn show off the ground. Looking forward to seeing who gets cast as Wednesday. I always imagined Robert Knepper in that role for some reason.

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