ITV’s 13-part re-imagining of epic poem Beowulf is currently shooting in the north east of England for air in 2016. Joining the previously announced Kieran Bew, William Hurt, Joanne Whalley, Ed Speelers and David Harewood are Joe Sims, Lee Boardman, David Bradley, Ace Bhatti and Gregory Fitoussi. As Downton Abbey prepares to shut its doors, ITV is banking on Beowulf as one of its big upcoming original dramas.

david bradleyThe Dark Ages Western is created by Strike Back‘s James Dormer and ITV Studios’ execs Tim Haines (Primeval) and Katie Newman (Primeval: New World). The drama about courage, greed, betrayal, revenge, loyalty, power, man versus wilderness and love, is produced by Stephen Smallwood for ITV Studios, and set in the mythical Shieldlands, a place of spectacle and danger, populated by both humas and fantastical creatures.

gregory fitoussiSims, Broadchurch‘s Nigel Carter, will appear in episode 5 as miner Greff; Boardman of Da Vinci’s Demons, comes aboard in episode 6 as an ambitious medic. Guest starring in episode 9, Bradley, of Harry Potter and The Strain, will play tribe leader Gorrik; Bhatti (Black Work) joins the cast in the same episode as councillor Harken. Finally, Fitoussi, who’s best known to TV audiences as Mr Selfridge‘s Henri Leclair, will be introduced in episode 10 as Razzzak, a 500-year-old human-creature Skinshiber.

Beowulf also stars Ian Puleston-Davies, Lolita Chakrabarti, Elliott Cowan, Ellora Torchia, Gisli Orn Gardarsson, Susan Aderin, Kirsty Oswald, Laura Donnelly, Edward Hogg, Alex Price, Jack Rowan and Itoya Osagiede.