6:00am PT by Lesley Goldberg
Matthew Perry to Play Ted Kennedy in Reelz's 'After Camelot' Miniseries
Reelz has cast its Ted Kennedy.
Friends grad Matthew Perry has been tapped to play the politician and executive produce The Kennedys — After Camelot, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
The four-hour miniseries serves as a follow-up to Reelz's 2011 mini The Kennedys. The series is based on biographer J. Randy Taraborrelli's New York Times best-seller After Camelot: A Personal History of the Kennedy Family 1968-Present. The series will premiere in spring 2017 and follow Ted Kennedy in the years following the assassinations of brothers Jack and Bobby Kennedy. It depicts his public and private life as he tries to live up to the family's political ambition.
Perry joins a cast that also includes Katie Holmes, who will reprise her Kennedys role as Jackie Kennedy Onassis.
“We are privileged to have an actor of Matthew Perry’s stature and ability take on the role of such a complex and controversial figure as Ted Kennedy,” executive producer and Muse Entertainment president Michael Prupas said in a statement announcing the news Tuesday. “Matthew Perry and Katie Holmes will fascinate audiences around the world as they bring these two famous Americans to life.”
After Camelot hails from Muse, with The Kennedys' Stephen Kronish returning to pen the adaptation alongside Sandra Chwialkowska (Lost Girl). Intuition Productions' Keri Selig, who brought the project to Reelz, will also serve as an executive producer. The Kennedys' Jon Cassar and Holmes will direct, with the actress also serving as an EP. The series will begin production in May in Toronto.
For Perry, the role comes as he's currently starring on stage in London's West End in The End of Longing, which also doubles as his debut as a playwright. He next has season two of CBS comedy The Odd Couple, which he also exec produces, debuting April 7. He's repped by CAA, manager Doug Chapin and attorney Paul Mayersohn.
After Camelot comes after Kennedys picked up 10 Emmy nominations, taking home wins for lead actor Barry Pepper, among others. The miniseries recorded a record 1.9 million total viewers in April 2011 after landing at Reelz when the History Channel scrapped the effort. Reelz first announced it was developing the four-hour miniseries in November 2012.