Alexander Ludwig (Vikings) is set to star alongside Stephen Amell in the upcoming wrestling drama Heels. Similarly to Amell, with Arrow filming its final season, Heels will mark the first television project for Ludwig after his role on a long-running hit.
Heels was announced in August. Far from the spectacle of WWE, or even the occasional glamour of GLOW, the show is set to focus on the struggles of independent wrestlers with dreams of making it big. Taking place in Georgia, the plot will reportedly revolve around a family-owned wrestling business where two brothers will collide over their father’s legacy. It was previously known that Amell would be playing the ‘heel’ brother, which is the wrestling term for a villainous persona, and now we know who will portray the good guy in the story.
As reported by Deadline, Ludwig will play Ace Spade. The perennial hero and star of the Duffy Wrestling Association. Starting to reconcile his status as a small town celebrity with his personal demons and insecurities, Ludwig’s character is noted as someone who is cocky and charming but also self-destructive. Spade is looking for his ticket out of small town life; aiming for superstardom. But that all depends on his ability to hold it together long enough to achieve his goals, which is no guarantee. In contrast, Jack Spade (Amell’s character) has been described as a perfectionist that is solely devoted to making the family-owned business a success.
Mike O’Malley, known for recurring on Glee and Justified, will serve as the showrunner. Mike Michael Waldron, who is running Loki for Disney+, is attached to write for Heels as well. The hourlong drama, which is set to air on Starz, for eight episodes, comes at a time when wrestling is attempting to inch its way back into the mainstream and capture some of the fire which helped propel Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson to the top of Hollywood. Amell himself is a noted wrestling fan, having competed in the ring on more than a few occasions over the years.
As for Ludwig, with his stint on Vikings coming to an end, he has a few other titles lined up. Most notably, he will appear in the much-awaited Bad Boys For Life. In the case of both Ludwig and Amell, known for their contributions to franchises which are popular all over the world, their new collaboration represents a more limited commitment; with the chance to delve into the mindset of the regular everyday dreamers of Heels.