HBO’s latest drama pilot, The Leftovers, has created a fair amount of buzz thanks to a creative team that includes former Lost showrunner and Star Trek Into Darkness scripter Damon Lindelof; former Friday Night Lights co-creator and Battleship director Peter Berg; and source material author Tom Perrotta. However, we had no idea who would be the on-screen face of the show… until now.

Film actor and occasional writer Justin Theroux has been cast as Kevin Garvey – a character that also exists in Perrotta’s novel – though it seems like there is already a small surface difference between the character in the book and the description that is floating out there alongside the Theroux casting news.

In the book, Garvey is the brand new mayor of Mapleton, a small town that is coping with the reality that remains after the Raputre, but Theroux’s character will play a police chief with two kids. In the book, Garvey is also a father of two, but his one son has runaway to join a prophet and his wife has joined a cult. Will the show’s movements echo that? It’s certainly possible, but this curious yet minor occupation tweak and Lindelof’s prior statements about the show being a “jumping off point” indicate that more changes may be coming.

That’s not necessarily a bad thing for admirers of the book. Fans of both the Walking Dead comic and the show know that there are major differences between the two, but for the most part, they have the benefit of two creations that are accessible to each project’s fans, while not always feeling like a re-tread.

Accomplishing that same level of proficiency will be Lindelof, Berg, and Perrotta’s challenge if the show goes to air, and with Theroux’s background as a writer (Iron Man 2 and Tropic Thunder), it’s easy to wonder if he will have more influence than just a starring role in a series that is suddenly chalk-full of people who make big action films.

Keep an eye on Screen Rant for more updates on HBO’s The Leftovers.

Source: Variety, TomPerrotta.net