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Damian Lewis has found his next TV gig.
The former Homeland star, who earned an Emmy for his turn as Nicholas Brody, has been cast opposite Mark Rylance in Wolf Hall, an adaptation of Hilary Mantel‘s historic novels, airing domestically on Masterpiece on PBS. Lewis is set to play Henry VIII, with Rylance on board as Thomas Cromwell in the six-part miniseries being written by Oscar nominee Peter Straughan (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy).
The project, being directed by Peter Kosminsky (White Oleander), will chart the meteoric rise of Cromwell in the Tudor court, from his lowly start as a blacksmith’s son to Henry VIII’s closest advisor. Rounding out the cast is Claire Foy (Little Dorrit), who will play the calculating and ambitious Anne Boleyn, along with Jonathan Pryce (Cranford) as the ostentatious and powerful Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, Joanne Whalley (The Borgias) as Henry’s first wife, Katherine of Aragon, and Mark Gatiss (Sherlock) as the haughty Stephen Gardiner, secretary to the King, among others.
Wolf Hall is a co-production of Company Pictures (Shameless) and Colin Callender‘s Playground (Dracula) for BBC Two and Masterpiece in association with BBC Worldwide. Filming has begun in the South West of England at Bottle Yard Studios in Bristol and on location with a plan in place to broadcast in 2015 on PBS and BBC2.
The news comes just days after Homeland showrunner Alex Gansa revealed at a TV Academy panel that he initially envisioned a very different exit for his star. “Originally we thought Saul was going to kill Brody, but it became clear that Carrie [Claire Danes] had to send her soulmate someplace he wasn’t going to come back from,” said Gansa, adding that the only option, which he toyed with, to keep Lewis on the show was to have the character seek political asylum in Iran.
Lewis is repped by UTA, Markham, Froggatt and Irwin and attorney Karl Austen.
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