Netflix has rounded out cast for Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City, its 10-episode limited series revival. Paul Gross (Due South, Alias Grace) returns to reprise his role as Brian Hawkins from the original miniseries, ex-husband of Mary Ann Singleton and father of Shawna Hawkins, played by previously announced Laura Linney and Ellen Page, respectively. The series is currently in production for a 2019 premiere.
Murray Bartlett (Looking) has been cast as the lovable Michael ‘Mouse’ Tolliver, longtime resident at Barbary Lane and Mary Ann’s best friend; Charlie Barnett (Chicago Fire) plays Mouse’s boyfriend Ben Marshall; newcomers Josiah Victoria Garcia plays Jake Rodriguez, a newer resident on Barbary Lane who is a transgender man and a caregiver for Anna Madrigal (previously announced Olympia Dukakis) and May Hong (High Maintenance) as Jake’s long-term girlfriend Margot Park. Previously announced Barbara Garrick also returns as DeDe Halycon Day.
Recurring cast members include Jen Richards (Her Story, Mrs. Fletcher) playing a young Anna Madrigal, Daniela Vega (A Fantastic Woman) as Ysela, a trans woman who plays a pivotal role in Anna’s life; Michelle Buteau (First Wives Club) as Wren, Brian’s no-nonsense best friend; Ashley Park (Broadway’s Mean Girls) and Christopher Larkin (The 100) as twins Ani and Raven who are newer residents of Barbary Lane; Caldwell Tidicue aka “Bob the Drag Queen” (RuPaul’s Drag Race) as Ida Best the manager of a burlesque club where Shawna and Margot work; Matthew Risch (Modern Family, Looking) as Mouse’s ex-boyfriend Harrison; Michael Park (Dear Evan Hansen) as Mary Ann’s husband Robert; Dickie Hearts (Grace & Frankie) as Mateo, DeDe’s housekeeper; Benjamin Thys (The Meyerowitz Stories) and Samantha Soule (Godless) as a queer polyamorous married couple Eli and Inka; and Juan Castano (The OA, What/If) as Ben’s co-worker Flaco Ramirez.
The series spotlights LGBTQ people both in front of and behind the camera. Showrunner / Executive Producer and writer Lauren Morelli (Co-Executive Producer and writer Orange Is the New Black) and Producing Director and Executive Producer Alan Poul (Tales of the City, Six Feet Under, The Newsroom), who are both part of the LGBTQ community, assembled an entirely queer writing team comprised of Andy Parker, Patricia Resnick, Marcus Gardley, Jen Silverman, Hansol Jung and Thomas Page McBee to create the authentic and multigenerational LGBTQ characters and stories. Talented directors who are also part of the LGBTQ community include Silas Howard, Sydney Freeland, Stacie Passon and Kyle Alvarez. Transgender people involved in the production include: Garcia (“Jake”) a non-binary trans actor who uses they/them pronouns; Richards (young Anna Madrigal) a trans woman who starred in and was a writer and producer on the Emmy-nominated web series Her Story, about dating as a trans woman; Vega (Ysela) a trans woman and the lead of the Oscar-winning film A Fantastic Woman; writer Thomas Page McBee; and directors Silas Howard and Sydney Freeland.
Based on the books by Armistead Maupin, this next chapter – Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City – follows Mary Ann (Linney), who returns home to San Francisco and is reunited with her daughter Shawna (Page) and ex-husband Brian, twenty years after leaving them behind to pursue her career. Fleeing the midlife crisis that her picture perfect Connecticut life created, Mary Ann returns home to her chosen family and will quickly be drawn back into the orbit of Anna Madrigal (Dukakis) and the residents of 28 Barbary Lane.
Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City is a Working Title Television and NBCUniversal International studios production for Netflix. Working Title’s Andrew Stearn, Liza Chasin, Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner also executive produce. Michael Cunningham will serve as a consulting producer.
Maupin is the author of eleven novels, including the nine-volume Tales of the City, which led to three Tales of the City limited series starring Linney and Dukakis. Alan Poul served as producer of the first three adaptations (Tales of the City, More Tales of the City, Further Tales of the City) which earned a Peabody Award and multiple Emmy Award nominations. The first aired in 1993 on PBS in the U.S., and the last two on Showtime in 1998 and 2001.