EXCLUSIVE: How’s this for a strong lineage? Matt Barr, who played 2020s Hoyt Rawlins on the CW’s Walker, also will play 1800s Hoyt Rawlins in the network’s pilot Walker: Independence. Barr has been been tapped as the male lead in the project, executive produced by Walker‘s Jared Padalecki.
Walker: Independence, a Walker origin story, is set in the late 1800s and follows Abby Walker, an affluent Bostonian whose husband is murdered before her eyes while on their journey out West. On her quest for revenge, Abby crosses paths with Hoyt Rawlins (Barr), a lovable rogue in search of purpose. Abby and Hoyt’s journey takes them to Independence, Texas, where they encounter diverse, eclectic residents running from their own troubled pasts and chasing their dreams. Our newfound family will struggle with the changing world around them, while becoming agents of change themselves in a town where nothing is what it seems.
Barr’s Rawlins is a gambler and an outlaw who lays low in the town of Independence. Cocky, confident, brash and a bit foolhardy, he’s been having an on-again, off-again affair with rancher’s daughter Lucia Montero — but after meeting Abby, Hoyt’s wandering eye appears to have frozen in place. Well aware that Abby is a straight arrow, Hoyt realizes he might have a lot to learn from her, seeing someone who might help him step away from the life of an outlaw, taking a side for change to fight for truth, justice and the Texan way.
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It is unclear how the 1800s Abby Walker and Hoyt Rawlins are related to the present day’s Abeline Walker (Molly Hagan) and her sons, Cordell Walker (Padalecki) and Liam Walker (Keegan Allen), as well as Cordell’s best friend Hoyt Rawlins (Barr), but Barr’s casting hints at a direct link between 2020s and 1800s Hoyt.
Seamus Fahey wrote the pilot based on a story by him and Anna Fricke; Larry Teng is directing. Fahey, Teng and Padalecki exec produce with Fricke and Laura Terry via their Pursued By a Bear banner alongside Rideback’s Dan Lin and Lindsey Liberatore. CBS Studios is the studio behind both Walker and Walker: Independence.
This is Barr’s latest collaboration with CBS Studios. In addition to his four-episode arc as Hoyt Rawlins, Barr headlined the studio’s CW series Valor as well as CBS’ Blood & Treasure.
Like Walker star Padalecki, Walker: Independence star Barr is a Texas native. He is no stranger to the Western genre, having appeared opposite Kevin Costner in the Emmy-winning Hatfields & McCoys. He also optioned and produced 12 Mighty Orphans, the Sony Pictures Classic Texas football drama starring Robert Duvall and Luke Wilson. Barr is repped by UTA and Luber/Roklin.
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