EXCLUSIVE: Netflix has given an eight-episode series order to Grendel, a series based on the masked vigilante from Matt Wagner’s popular, award-winning Dark Horse comic book series, with Abubakr Ali (Power Book II: Ghost, Katy Keene) set to star in the titular role. With Ali’s casting, he becomes the first Arab Muslim male actor to portray a series lead in a comic book adaptation. The series, written and executive produced by Resident Evil and Supernatural alum Andrew Dabb, comes out of Netflix’s first look deal with Dark Horse Entertainment.
Also joining the cast are Jaime Ray Newman (Dopesick, The Time Traveler’s Wife), Julian Black Antelope (The Flash, Debris), Madeline Zima (Californication, Hacks), Kevin Corrigan (Scenes from an Empty Church, The Get Down), Emma Ho (Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, The Expanse), Erik Palladino (The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Watchmen), Brittany Allen (What Keeps You Alive)and Andy Mientus (The Flash, Dolly Parton’s Heartstrings). Read more about their characters below.
Grendel, which sees Dabb also serve as showrunner, follows Hunter Rose (Ali), a gifted fencer, writer and assassin, seeking to avenge the death of a lost love. He goes to war with New York’s criminal underworld, only to realize…why beat them, when you can join them?
Wagner executive produces the series alongside Dark Horse Entertainment’s Mike Richardson, Keith Goldberg and Chris Tongue. Rachel Goldberg directs the first two episodes of the series.
Dark Horse Entertainment and Netflix previously collaborated on The Umbrella Academy, Jonas Åkerlund’s Polar and are currently in production on the animated series Samurai Rabbit: The Usagi Chronicles.
Wagner shared the following statement about the upcoming adaptation: “I couldn’t be more thrilled about the Grendel saga, one of the longest-running independent comics series, finally being translated into live-action for the screen. Under the sharp guidance of showrunner Andrew Dabb, our incredible creative team, sure-to-be stellar cast and Dark Horse Entertainment have teamed with Netflix to produce this provocative adaptation that will bring my characters and concepts to an all new audience and yet still provide excitement and surprises for die-hard fans. I’m especially excited to see Abubakr Ali bring the character of Grendel/Hunter Rose to life — he has the charisma, style and vital edginess that I’ve been envisioning in the role for years.”
Newman appears as Jocasta Rose.
Black Antelope will take on Argent.
Zima will play Liz Sparks.
Corrigan joins Grendel as Barry Palumbo.
Ho will play Stacy Palumbo.
Palladino takes on Teddy Ciccone.
Allen will play Annabelle Wright.
Mientus will play Larry Stohler.
Ali’s reps are APA, Authentic Talent & Literary Management and Gang, Tyre, Ramer, Brown & Passman. Newman is represented by Greene Talent and The Burstein Company. Black Antelope is repped by The Characters Talent Agency. Zima is represented by Affirmative Entertainment and Buchwald. Corrigan is repped by A3 Artists Agency. Ho is represented by Noble Caplan Abrams. Palladino’s reps are Green Talent Agency and The Coronel Group. Allen is repped by GGA and Luber Roklin. Mientus’ reps are A3 Artists Agency, Soffer/Namoff Entertainment, HCKR Agency, and attorney Peikoff Mahan.