Neil Gaiman fans have been half mad with excitement ever since it was announced that Hannibal show runner Bryan Fuller would be bringing the strange and wonderful fantasy novel, American Gods, to television with a new series on Starz. The wide cast of gods old and new seems to be right up Fuller’s alley, so 2017 can’t come soon enough. While fans have been speculating wildly about casting ever since the series was first announced, today we got our first official casting news: English actor Ricky Whittle, best known stateside for his work on CW show The 100, has been cast as Shadow Moon. Many were worried that the pervasive whitewashing in Hollywood would take down Shadow as well, but it looks like Fuller and crew will be sticking to canon.
Gaiman himself wholeheartedly approves of the casting, saying in a press release:
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.
While Whittle is mostly unknown to American audiences, fans of The 100 can speak to his talent as an actor. While it may be on the CW, it’s actually a well done and morally ambiguous sci-fi show (no, really, it’s good!), and Whittle is compelling on it for reasons beyond the usually ab-tastic CW standards. With the casting of Shadow, hopefully the other players will soon fall into place. Can we please get Ian McShane for Mr. Wednesday?