'Succession' Breakout to Star in NBC Drama 'Langdon'

Actor Ashley Zukerman - Getty - H 2020
Dominik Magdziak Photography/WireImage

NBC's drama pilot Langdon, based on the character in Dan Brown's best-seller The Lost Symbol, has found its lead actor.

Ashley Zukerman (HBO's Succession) will star as Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon in the pilot. He's taking on a role played by Tom Hanks in three movies based on Brown's novels — The Da Vinci Code, Angels & Demons and Inferno.

The pilot, from CBS Television Studios, Universal TV and Imagine TV, follows the early adventures of Robert Langdon, who must solve a series of deadly puzzles to save his kidnapped mentor and thwart a chilling global conspiracy.

Dan Dworkin and Jay Beattie (ABC's Revenge, MTV's Scream) are writing the adaptation of Brown's novel. NBC made the project one of its first script buys of the season in June 2019, giving it a sizable production commitment at the time. Dexter veteran Daniel Cerone, who was initially attached to pen the script, is no longer involved.

Dworkin and Beattie will executive produce with author Brown and Imagine's Brian Grazer, Ron Howard — who directed the three Langdon movies that starred Hanks — Samie Falvey and Anna Culp.

Zukerman is coming off a run on Succession, where he played Shiv's (Sarah Snook) former colleague and on-and-off lover, Nate Sofrelli. The actor's credits also include ABC's Designated Survivor, WGN America's Manhattan, Syfy's Childhood's End and HBO's The Pacific. Zukerman next stars in FX's limited series A Teacher. He is repped by Cohn/Torgan Management, Gersh, Lisa Mann Creative Management in Australia and Felker Toczek.

Langdon is the latest project for NBC taking a character from a well-known piece of IP and building a procedural around it. Other efforts in that vein include this season's Lincoln Rhyme: Hunt for the Bone Collector and adaptations of Taken and The Firm.

The project is one of a half-dozen drama pilots in contention at NBC for 2020-21. The others are the family dramas At That Age and Ordinary Joe and the genre entries Debris, Echo and La Brea