Kingdom and Friday Night Lights alum Matt Lauria is set for a recurring role opposite Hailee Steinfeld in Dickinson, Apple’s straight-to-series half-hour comedy about 1800s poet Emily Dickinson. The project hails from Paul Lee’s independent studio wiip, Darlene Hunt and Alena Smith. Written by Smith, Dickinson is set during Emily Dickinson’s era with a modern sensibility and tone. It takes viewers into the world of Emily (Steinfeld), audaciously exploring the constraints of society, gender, and family from the perspective of a budding writer who doesn’t fit in to her own time through her imaginative point of view. Lauria will play Ben Newton, a handsome clerk who works for Emily’s father. Ben has an otherworldly quality when compared to the people of Amherst. He has a sensitivity that is uncommon for men of this time, which allows him and Emily to build a deeper connection. Lauria will next be seen on the big screen alongside Samuel Jackson and Jesse T. Usher in New Line’s Son of Shaft for director Tim Story. Lauria is repped by WME, Principal Entertainment, and Bloom Hergott Diemer.
Ali Ahn (The Path) is set for a recurring role opposite Jason Ritter and Michael B. Jordan in Netflix’s straight-to-series hourlong sci-fi family drama Raising Dion. The series is based on commercial and music video director Dennis Liu’s short film about an African-American single mother who discovers her young son has multiple, constantly changing abilities. Raising Dion, a Netflix production, follows the story of a woman named Nicole Reese, who raises her son Dion after the death of her husband Mark (Jordan). The normal dramas of raising a son as a single mom are amplified when Dion starts to manifest several magical, superhero-like abilities. Nicole must now keep her son’s gifts secret with the help of Mark’s best friend Pat (Ritter), and protect Dion from antagonists out to exploit him while figuring out the origin of his abilities. Ahn will play Suzanne Wu, a scientist who lacks the ability to fake enthusiasm or interest. She’s either fascinated or disengaged. She knows more about the company and its people than anyone. Ahn’s previous TV credits include recurring roles on The Path, Billions, Orange is the New Black and Supernatural. She’s repped by Gersh, ATA Management and Jackoway Austen Tyerman.