A Discovery of Witches casts Alex Kingston; Bumblebee, The Purge 4 round out casts

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Several big- and small-screen projects have expanded their cast over the past few days, including Bumblebee, The Purge 4, a fantasy film titled Libby’s Dreams, and the upcoming A Discovery of Witches TV series.

Deadline reports that John Ortiz (Kong: Skull Island) has joined the cast of Paramount’s buzzy Bumblebee movie. Ortiz will be joining Jon Cena (Trainwreck) and Hailee Steinfeld (Ender’s Game) in the Transformers spinoff to be directed by Travis Knight (Kubo and the Two Strings) from a script written by Christina Hodson (Shut In).

The movie takes place in 1987, where Bumblebee has taken refuge in a junkyard. The beloved Autobot is “discovered and revived by Charlie [Steinfeld] who, on the cusp of turning 18, is trying to find her place in the world.” Bumblebee is slated for a Dec. 21, 2018, release.

Blumhouse's fourth entry in The Purge horror franchise has added several cast members to the prequel. According to Deadline, Mo McRae (Pitch), Joivan Wade (Doctor Who), Luna Lauren Velez (How to Get Away With Murder), Steve Harris (The Practice), Patch Darragh (Boardwalk Empire), and Mugga (Orange Is the New Black) have come on board the film currently starring Y’lan Noel (Insecure) and Lex Scott Davis (Training Day).

Gerard McMurray (Burning Sands) will be sitting in the director’s chair, with franchise creator James DeMonaco writing the script. DeMonaco helmed the three previous films. The Purge 4 will follow the events that lead to the initial crime-and-murder-is-legal-for-12-hours Purge event and will arrive in theaters on July 4, 2018.

Variety reports that fantasy movie Libby’s Dreams has nabbed Valeria Cotto (The Florida Project) to star in the independent film directed and produced by Alexander Garcia (Gallatin 6). The movie is based on a short story Garcia wrote aged 12, which centers on a creative young girl who discovers a portal through her dreams that allows her to escape the life she has on Earth and go to different worlds. No release date has been slated yet.

Last but not least, Alex Kingston (Doctor Who), Lindsay Duncan (Doctor Who, Sherlock), Valarie Pettiford (The Blacklist), and Tanya Moodie (Sherlock) have boarded Sky One’s TV adaptation of Deborah Harkness’ 2011 historical fantasy novel A Discovery of Witches, says Radio Times.

They are joining series leads Teresa Palmer (Warm Bodies) as witch-in-denial Diana Bishop and Matthew Goode (Watchmen) as a centuries-old vampire, Matthew Clairmont. The cast also includes Louise Brealey (Sherlock), Greg McHugh (Fresh Meat), Owen Teale (Game of Thrones), Aiysha Hart (Atlantis), Elarica Johnson (Strike: The Cuckoo’s Calling), and Trevor Eve (Waking the Dead NOT The Walking Dead).

Kingston will play Diana’s aunt Sarah Bishop, who is a powerful witch and the protector of the family, with Pettiford playing her partner, Emily “Em” Mather. Duncan will star as Ysabeau de Clermont, the vampire mother of Goode’s character, who has a “powerful dislike of witches,” while Moodie has been cast as Agatha Wilson, a daemon member of the Congregation.

A Discovery of Witches will air sometime in 2018 on Sky One.