EXCLUSIVE: Ben Whishaw has been tapped as the lead in Alan Ball’s pilot for HBO All Signs of Death, marking the British actor’s U.S. TV debut. The dark comedic drama, based on Charlie Huston’s 2009 crime noir novel The Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of Death, centers on Webster Filmore Goodhue (Whishaw) an inveterate twenty-something slacker who stumbles into a career as a crime scene cleaner, only to find himself entangled with a murder mystery, a femme fatale and the loose ends of his own past. Ball is executive producing and directing the pilot, which was written by Huston. The pilot, slated to start filming in August in Los Angeles, will employ smaller, portable cameras for a cinema verite style. Whishaw, who trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, got his break in the U.K. in 2004 when he played the lead in Trevor Nunn’s production of Hamlet at the Old Vic. He has starred in several British series and features, including films Layer CakeBright Star and Brideshead Revisited. Whishaw next appears in another William Shakespeare adaptation, Julie Taymor’s big-screen The Tempest.