‘The Good Lord Bird’: Meet Ethan Hawke, Daveed Diggs and rest of the cast of this Showtime limited series
This equal parts absurd and tragic drama set in Antebellum America is based on the award-winning novel by author James McBride
Showtime’s seven-part semi-biographical limited series, ‘The Good Lord Bird’, promises to be one of the most intense shows in October. Based on the 2013 novel of the same name by James McBride, Hawke (he is also the show’s executive producer) stars as the controversial abolitionist John Brown. Told from the point of view of Onion, a newly freed teenager who joins the abolitionist on a holy crusade to end slavery and finds himself part of the famous 1859 raid at Harpers Ferry, the show is an adventure and promises to be “equal parts absurd and tragic,” spotlighting the ever-changing racial, religious and gender roles that make up the American identity.
The show’s story is an important one (and oft not discussed in popular culture). But it is the star cast that is really exciting. Let’s take a look at who is going to make appearances on the show:
Ethan Hawke as John Brown
The 49-year-old is a Tony and four-time Academy Award-nominated actor and writer whose diverse career as a novelist, actor, director, and screenwriter spans more than three decades. He received critical praise for his performance in Paul Schrader’s 'First Reformed' and was named Best Actor by the New York Film Critics Circle and the Gotham Awards, in addition to winning this year’s Independent Spirit Award for Best Male Lead.
He has been in many iconic films such as 'Dead Poets Society', 'Gattaca', 'Training Day', 'Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead', 'Boyhood,' 'Born to Be Blue', Richard Linklater’s 'Before' trilogy, and 'Juliet, Naked'. He also directed and co-wrote the music biopic 'Blaze' which he produced with his wife Ryan for their Under the Influence banner.
Daveed Diggs as Frederick Douglass
The 38-year-old actor, singer, producer, writer, and rapper is the vocalist of the experimental hip hop group Clipping. Diggs originated the role of and won a Grammy and Tony for, the Marquis de Lafayette/Thomas Jefferson in the 2015 musical ‘Hamilton’.
Diggs has played a bunch of critically acclaimed roles in shows and films like ‘Black-ish’, ‘Wonder’, ‘Velvet Buzzsaw’, ‘Blindspotting’, ‘Snowpiercer’, and more. Aside from the Grammy and Tony, Diggs also was nominated for the Independent Spirit Award for Best Male Lead in 2018.
Wyatt Russell as First Lieutenant J. E. B. Stuart
The 34-year-old American actor and former ice hockey player is best known for his roles as Corporal Lewis Ford in ‘Overlord’, and as Dud in the AMC dramedy, ‘Lodge 49’. His other noted roles include films like ‘22 Jump Street’, ‘Blaze’, ‘Ingrid Goes West’, and ‘Shimmer Lake’, and television shows like ‘Black Mirror’.
He is also soon going to appear as John Walker / U.S. Agent in the Disney+ series ‘The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’, which is set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Joshua Caleb Johnson as Onion
The teenage actor from Los Angeles, California is perhaps best known for playing Dwayne Baxter on the FX series ‘Snowfall’. He also appeared on ‘Black-ish’ in an infrequent capacity, playing Marsai Martin's boyfriend. Johnson has starred in two independent feature films -- ‘It's Just A Gun’, and ‘Ray Meets Helen’. He’s also starred in a number of short films. Johnson has been seen in many national commercials such as Toyota, Honda, Enterprise, and Gardasil.
McKinley Belcher III as Broadnax
The 36-year-old American actor is best known for his roles as Samuel Diggs in the PBS television series ‘Mercy Street’, as Anthony Carter in the Fox drama ‘The Passage’, and as Agent Trevor Evans in Netflix crime thriller ‘Ozark’. His film credits include titles like ‘The Art of Racing in the Rain’, ‘Trial By Fire’, ‘Mapplethorpe’, and ‘Marriage Story’.
The series also stars Hubert Point-Du Jour, Nick Eversman, Mo Brings Plenty, Jack Alcott, Ellar Coltrane, Beau Knapp, David Morse, Steve Zahn, Maya Hawke, and Orlando Jones.
‘The Good Lord Bird’ will premiere on Sunday, October 4, at 9 pm ET/PT, only on Showtime.