I have learned that Samuel Barnett (Jupiter Ascending) has been cast as the lead opposite Elijah Wood in Dirk Gently, BBC America’s eight-episode series based on the cult Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency novels by Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy author Douglas Adams. Written by Max Landis, the series is set to debut in fall 2016. Dean Parisot has come on board to direct the first two episodes. Stargate franchise veteran Robert Cooper has been named showrunner.
Dirk Gently is a comedic thriller that follows the bizarre adventures of eccentric “holistic” detective Dirk Gently (Barnett) and his reluctant assistant Todd (Wood), as they wend their way through one big, seemingly insane mystery a season, crossing unlikely paths with a bevy of wild and sometimes dangerous characters, each episode landing them a few random steps closer to uncovering the truth.
The series is co-produced by AMC Studios, Ideate Media and comic book publisher IDW Entertainment with Circle of Confusion producing. Exec producers are Landis, who wrote the project on spec; Cooper; Ideate’s Arvind Ethan David and Zainir Aminullah; IDW’s Ted Adams and David Ozer; and David Alpert and Rick Jacobs from Circle of Confusion.
In the four-episode BBC4 adaptation of Dirk Gently, which aired in 2010 and 2012, the title role was played by Stephen Mangan.
British actor Barnett is a two-time Tony Award nominee for his roles in Twelfth Night, in which he co-starred opposite Mark Rylance, and in The History Boys. He will next be seen on the upcoming season of John Logan’s Showtime series Penny Dreadful. Barnett is repped by ICM Partners and Independent Talent Group in the UK.