Back in April, Spike TV granted a 10-episode first season order to The Mist, an adaptation of the well-regarded Stephen King novella of the same name. For those yet to read the book, The Mist’s plot concerns main character David Drayton and his grocery store-set fight for survival alongside a group of fellow frightened Maine residents after a mysterious mist containing otherworldly monsters blankets their small town. Complicating matters is the emergence of Mrs. Carmody, a local religious zealot who quickly convinces a group of followers that the events are a punishment from God, and that only a human sacrifice will earn them salvation.
The novella was adapted theatrically by director – and frequent King collaborator – Frank Darabont (The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile) in 2007. Spike’s TV series rendition retains the original premise and small town setting, while focusing on brand new characters with brand new interpersonal issues.
Now, Deadline is reporting the casting of eight regular members of The Mist’s ever-expanding roster. First up on the list of additions is Darren Pettie (Mad Men) as Connor Heisel, the town sheriff and resident alpha male. His attempts to maintain law and order within the group of survivors are hampered by the fact that his son Jay has been accused of an as yet unspecified brutal crime, earning the teen a number of enemies within the local populace. Playing Jay – who in addition to being the sheriff’s son is also a high school football star – is newcomer Luke Cosgrove.
English actor Okezie Morro (Red Tails) will play Jonah Dixon, a military man with a bad case of amnesia. Needless to say, an attack by Lovecraftian beasts is not the best time to forget one’s identity, although King’s story did hint at a military experiment possibly being responsible for what happened.
Next up is relative newcomer Gus Birney, who is set to play Alex Cunningham, daughter of Eve Cunningham. Formerly the stereotypical good girl, Alex has recently adopted a rebellious streak. Unfortunately, she becomes the alleged victim of Jay’s heinous crime, earning her ridicule from those in town who don’t buy her story. Russell Posner plays Adrian Garff, Alex’s best friend and biggest defender. He witnessed the crime, and backs up Alex’s story. Rounding things out are Isiah Whitlock Jr. (The Wire) as conflicted mall manager Gus Redman, Dan Butler (Frasier) as demoralized priest Father Romanov, and Danica Curcic (Gold Coast) as drug addict on the run Mia Lambert.
Previously it was announced that Australian actress Alyssa Sutherland (Vikings) had joined the cast as Eve Cunningham, a wife and mother who becomes trapped inside the local mall alongside her teenage daughter, reminiscent of how husband and father David Drayton became trapped inside a store with his young son in tow. Sutherland and the eight new cast member join the previously announced Frances Conroy (American Horror Story), who plays Nathalie, a character seemingly set up to be the Mrs. Carmody in this new scenario.
While the ending to Darabont’s 2007 film adaptation of The Mist proved extremely divisive, most fans still agreed that the overall movie succeeded in capturing the tone and intent of King’s popular story. With that in mind, Spike choosing to take the premise and move it to a larger building with different characters is likely a good move. After all, The Mist’s enduring power has way more to do with its fantastical concept than it does any one particular character.
The Mist starts production later this summer, but has no confirmed premiere date.