UPDATED: Irish actor Ed MacLiam (EastEnders) has been cast as the lead of ABC’s drama pilot Big Thunder. Also cast in the pilot, written by Jason Fuchs, directed by Rob Bowman and executive produced by Melissa Rosenberg, is Twilight‘s Alex Meraz, reuniting with the movie franchise’s writer, Rosenberg. Additionally, Ruth Bradley and Resident Evil‘s Spencer Locke have been added to the project, based on Disney’s roller coaster ride. It centers on Dr. Grant Carson (MacLiam), a brilliant, late 19th century New York doctor. He and his family are given a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to relocate to a frontier mining town run by a powerful but mysterious tycoon, but quickly realize that not everything in Big Thunder is as it seems. Meraz, repped by Innovative and Leverage, plays a handsome Shoshone tribesman. Irish actress Bradley, who played the female lead in ABC/ABC Studio’s pilot Beauty And The Beast last season, plays Nora, a nanny with a dark, hidden past. The casting stems from her talent holding deal with ABC and ABC Studios. Locke, repped by APA, Jaymee Locke and Scott Whitehead, plays Lizzie, Carson’s beautiful and brilliant teenage daughter. Bradley is with Anonymous Content and UK’s Hamilton/Hodell.
Chelsea Gilligan and Greg Finley (The Secret Life Of The American Teenager) have been cast in the CW pilot Oxygen. Written by Meredith Averill and directed by Gary Fleder, centers on Emery (Aimee Teegarden), a teen girl who falls in love with Roman (Matt Lanter), an alien boy, one of nine integrated into a suburban high school. Gilligan and Finley, repped by The Kohner Agency and Benderspink, play two of the nine alien students.
Gregory Marcel has been cast in in the ABC drama pilot Influence, from Kyle Killen and 20th TV. It centers on the complicated relationship between two brothers — Clark Clark (Steve Zahn), a bipolar genius in human psychology, and Ross, a slick ex-con — who solve their clients’ problems using the real science of human motivation and manipulation. Marcel will play Miles, a geeky handsome, talkative and a little obtuse member of the team, a promising psych grad student.