Joel Edgerton has signed on for a role in the Barry Jenkins’ Amazon series “The Underground Railroad,” Variety has learned exclusively.
Edgerton will play the part of Ridgeway, a slavecatcher. He joins previously announced cast members Thuso Mbedu, Chase W. Dillon, and Aaron Pierre.
The role will mark Edgerton’s first regular TV role in some time. He previously starred in the series “The Secret Life of Us” in his native Australia early in his career in addition to a handful of other TV roles. Nowadays, Edgerton is known for his film work. He most recently starred in, wrote, and directed the film “Boy Erased,” which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2018. He made his feature directorial debut in 2015 with the STX thriller “The Gift,” in which he also starred and wrote. His other film roles include “Loving,” “Red Sparrow,” “Bright,” “Jane Got a Gun,” and “Midnight Special.”
He is repped by CAA, Anonymous Content, and Hirsh Wallerstein.
Based on Colson Whitehead’s book of the same name, “The Underground Railroad” chronicles young Cora’s (Mbedu) journey as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. After escaping her Georgia plantation for the rumored Underground Railroad, Cora discovers no mere metaphor, but an actual railroad full of engineers and conductors, and a secret network of tracks and tunnels beneath the Southern soil.
Jenkins will direct all 11 episodes of the one-hour series in what will be his first attempt at directing a TV series in its entirety. Jenkins’ Pastel Productions will executive produce along with Brad Pitt’s Plan B Entertainment. Pitt and Plan B also produced Jenkins’ Academy Award-winning film “Moonlight. ”
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