The first of two “event” series that Fox has slated for the fall of 2014, Wayward Pines comes from largely reviled film director M. Night Shyamalan, who hasn’t had a good movie since Unbreakable and hasn’t really had a box-office hit since 2004’s The Village. In fact, the best thing he’s done in years is Devil, a movie he came up with the concept for, and a movie that might have done much better at the box office had his name not been attached (it was decidedly “not bad”).
At any rate, he’s turning his attention now to television, where hopefully there are enough voices and writers in the room to drown him out (and besides, he’ll likely only direct the pilot before leaving the series to more capable hands). Wayward Pines is based on Blake Crouch’s novel Pines, and is described as a mind-bending thriller in which nothing is what it seems.
I don’t know anything about the source material, and I’m no longer a fan of Shyamalan (although, I will give him immense credit for his pacing abilities), but I can tell you this: The cast he’s assembled is outstanding. Let’s take a look.
Matt Dillon plays Secret Service agent Ethan Burke who arrives in the bucolic town of Wayward Pines, ID, on a mission to find two missing federal agents. But instead of answers, Ethan’s investigation only turns up more questions.
Oscar winner Melissa Leo plays Pam, the intense, unpredictable nurse who first takes care of Ethan when he wakes up in the Wayward Pines hospital. “But it soon seems Pam may be more interested in harming than healing. Nurse Pam and Ethan grow into deadly rivals, and her role in the town of Wayward Pines proves much deeper than it first appears.”
Carla Gugino plays Kate Hewson, a former love interests of Matt Dillon‘s Secret Service agent. Kate is also Ethan’s former partner at the Secret Service and a resident of Wayward Pines, ID.
British actor Toby Jones (The Hunger Games, Harry Potter) plays Dr. Jenkins, a charismatic and mysterious psychiatrist who treats Ethan Burke. Jenkins believes brain damage suffered in a car wreck is the source of Burke’s paranoia.
Terrence Howard plays Wayward Pines’ Sheriff Pope.
Shannyn Sossamon will play Theresa Burke, Ethan’s wife. Theresa, who met Ethan when she was a trainee in the Secret Service, left the Service to raise their son Ben.
Juliette Lewis will play Beverly, a warm and approachable small-town bartender who doesn’t mince words. Ethan quickly learns that Beverly is just as wary of Wayward Pines as he is.