EXCLUSIVE: The National Geographic scripted series Barkskins has added Aneurin Barnard (The Goldfinch, The Personal History of David Copperfield, Radioactive), Thomas M. Wright (Acute Misfortune, Top of the Lake, The Bridge) and Tallulah Haddon (Kiss Me First, Black Mirror: Bandersnatch) as series regulars.
Based on the bestselling novel by Pulitzer Prize-winner Annie Proulx (Brokeback Mountain), Barkskins follows a disparate group of outcasts who must navigate the brutal hardships, competing interests, and tangled loyalties at the crossroads of civilization—1600s New France—where the war to escape their past and re-make themselves is cast against the vast and unforgiving wilds of North America.
Barnard will star as Hamish Goames, a polished, clean-cut Hudson Bay Company man in search of his lost comrade while Wright will play Elisha Cooke, a cutthroat English barrel maker, who has schemed his way into New France, set on growing the crown’s stake in the region. Rounding out the trio is Haddon who will step into the role of Melissande, a sharp-tongued, ambitious Fille Du Roy, a real program where young French woman got to pick a husband (of their choosing) to populate and settle the new land.
They will join previously announced cast members Marcia Gay Harden, David Thewlis, Christian Cooke and James Bloor. Harden will star as Mathilde, the innkeeper who knows everyone’s secrets and a burgeoning power player in town as she learns how to use them and Thewlis will play Monsieur Claude Trepagny, a wealthy landowner with grand visions for New France. Cooke will portray Rene Sel, a strong-willed, morally sound indentured servant, signed to Trepagny while Bloor will star as Charles Duquet, a scrappy, industrious scoundrel, also signed to servitude under Trepagny.
The series hails from Elwood Reid (The Chi, The Bridge), Fox 21 Television Studios (Genius: Picasso, The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story, The Americans) and National Geographic. Reid created Barkskins and will executive produce along with Scott Rudin, Garrett Basch, Eli Bush, and David Slade (Black Mirror: Bandersnatch), who will also direct. Carolyn Bernstein, Executive Vice President, Global Scripted Content & Documentary Films will oversee for National Geographic. The first season is slated to go into production in 2019 and will premiere on National Geographic globally in 172 countries and 43 languages.
Barnard is repped by The Artists Partnership, CAA and Ziffren Brittenham. Wright is repped by WME and StaceyTestro International. Haddon is repped by Hamilton Hodell.