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Wednesday, July 6, 2022

American Gods has a Shadow

After so long, we finally have an official update on the STARZ adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s novel American Gods.

English actor Richard ‘Ricky’ Whittle, who was recently cast in The 100 as grounder Lincoln, will star as Shadow Moon, an ex-con with a talent for coin tricks who is recruited as a bodyguard by the enigmatic Mr Wednesday as he travels America. Along the way, Shadow discovers that Mr Wednesday is more than he seems, as he gets pulled into the world of deities old and new and the growing conflict between them.

Ricky as ‘Lincoln’, from ‘The 100’

Following the announcement, Neil Gaiman addressed the importance of Shadow’s appearance in a statement about Whittle’s casting:

I’m thrilled that Ricky has been cast as Shadow. His auditions were remarkable. The process of taking a world out of the pages of a book, and putting it onto the screen has begun.

American Gods is, at its heart, a book about immigrants, and it seems perfectly appropriate that Shadow will, like so much else, be coming to America. I’m delighted Ricky will get to embody Shadow. Now the fun starts.

This connects with what Bryan Fuller commented upon in an interview last year regarding diversity, and how important it was that they have “a very ethically diverse cast” for the show.

One of the things I’m most excited about for American Gods is the diversity in the cast because there’s such a wide range of ethnic Gods in the world. Right now, we’re imagining two white roles and everybody else is non-white, so my goal, Michael’s goal, certainly Neil’s goal has been to have a very ethnically diverse cast. That’s important to all of us.

Also now, we can cite Empire and we can cite The Walking Dead as being primarily non-white in their casting, and they’re the two biggest shows in the world right now, so that has to say something. We have to be moving forward with a representation that is accurate to the world.

To make matters more interesting, Neil followed up with the following tweet.

More casting to come? Have they already found other actors? Do we have a Mr Wednesday or Low-Key Lyesmith already confirmed? With American Gods set to begin production around March/April, one can only expect for the slow trickle of news to increase as time goes by.

Daniel Delargy
Daniel Delargy
I read. I write. I play.

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