The Walking Dead may be on its annual midseason hiatus, but we’ve definitely had plenty to talk about in regards to AMC’s involvement in the zombie apocalypse. We’ve been hearing about the spinoff, or companion series as they appear to prefer it be called, now titled Cobalt, for some time, but the network has recently revealed details and pieced together the core cast, and they just added another actor. The upcoming zombie drama will feature Kim Dickens as the female lead.
Dickens is the forth of the major part to be cast and, according to Deadline, she joins Cliff Curtis, Frank Dillane, and Alycia Debnam Carey. I don’t know much about the two younger actors, but you’ve seen Dillane in one of the Harry Potter movies playing Tom Riddle, and Aussie Debnam Carey made her American debut last summer with Into the Storm, and can be seen playing a Grounder leader on The CW’s The 100. Curtis and Dickens, however, are more known quantities, and should serve as a solid anchor for this new series.
Dickens has been turning in strong performances for years in shows like Treme, Friday Night Lights, and Lost, and movies like Hollow Man and The Blind Side, among others. Most recently she delivered a great turn as a hard-nosed detective in David Fincher’s Gone Girl. She plays Nancy Tompkins, a divorced guidance counselor who is in a relationship with Curtis’ character, Sean Cabrera, a teacher, which explains how they know each other. Dillane and Debnam Carey play Nancy’s kids from a previous marriage, Nick and Ashley. Nick is a drugged out screw up, while Ashley is as motivated and ambitious as her brother is lazy and apathetic.
We recently learned that Cobalt takes place on the opposite side of the country from The Walking Dead, and is set in Los Angeles, which definitely provides the opportunity to show a different part of the world other than rural Georgia. Produced by Robert Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd, and David Alpert, the new series will also potentially be set in a different time period. The main show dropped audiences, and protagonist Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln), smack in the middle of a world gone to hell, but we’ve heard rumblings that this new addition paints us a picture of the beginnings of the outbreak. Given the way the characters are described, with a great deal of emphasis on their jobs and normal lives, this sounds like a good possibility.
There’s no precise timeline for Cobalt just yet, but with these key players in place, you have to imagine that the pilot will shoot before long. And unless something goes horribly wrong, as popular as The Walking Dead is, it’s easy to assume the show will be picked up and air sometime in 2015.