In a day that has seen a new pope elected and a teaser for The Borgias released, we have yet another piece of papal-related news as Showtime has announced that Ewen Bremner has joined the cast of The Vatican. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the pilot, from House scribe Paul Attanasio and directed by Ridley Scott (Blade Runner), will feature the Scottish actor as Monsignor Alberico Iemma, a man in charge of investigating and pronouncing miracles for the Church. But will he be on the same side as the pontiff or is there a hidden agenda guiding his every action?
Described as a “contemporary genre thriller about spirituality, power and politics,” The Vatican stars Emmy winner Kyle Chandler (Friday Night Lights) as Cardinal Thomas Duffy, the Archbishop of New York whose progressive leanings and enigmatic personality have proven to be divisive within the church. Co-starring alongside Chandler are Matthew Goode (A Single Man) as Papal Secretary Bernd Koch, the current Pope’s closest confidante; Sebastian Koch (The Lives of Others) as “dark prince of the Curia” Cardinal Marco Malerba, the Vatican’s Secretary of State; and Anna Friel (Pushing Daisies) as Kayla, Thomas’s rebellious party girl sister who actively defies all conventions of the Church.
Production on The Vatican, one of two pilots in contention at Showtime, begins later this year. Also in play for the rising pay cable network is infidelity drama The Affair, to be penned by Sarah Teem (House of Cards, In Treatment).
Most known for his role in Trainspotting, Bremner has appeared on the likes of The Accused, Strike Back, and My Name is Earl.
What do you think about the casting of Bremner as a man in charge of miracles? Are there any other actors that you’d like to see join the cast? Does The Vatican sound like something you’d watch?