BBC America finally casts its Dirk Gently for the Max Landis series

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Mar 30, 2016, 12:46 PM EDT

BBC America has finally found its Dirk Gently! Samuel Barnett (The History Boys, Jupiter Ascending) has been cast in the title role of everyone’s favorite zany “holistic” detective, created by Douglas Adams (Hitchker’s Guide to the Galaxy). The British actor is also set to appear on the upcoming season of Showtime’s hit horror series Penny Dreadful.

Just last week, the network had announced the casting of Lord of the Rings star Elijah Wood as a new character named “Todd” on the eight-part series, written and created by screenwriter Max Landis (Chronicle).

In another bit of awesome news, they’ve also revealed that Robert Cooper (Stargate Atlantis, Stargate Universe) will serve as showrunner while Oscar-winning director Dean Parisot (Galaxy Quest, Justified) will helm the first two episodes.

Here’s the official press release:

New York, NY – March 29, 2016 – BBC AMERICA announced today that stage, television and film actor Samuel Barnett (Twelfth Night, The History Boys, Penny Dreadful) has been cast in the title role of the network’s new original scripted series Dirk Gently, set to premiere in Fall 2016. The announcement comes on the heels of Elijah Wood (The Trust, Cooties, Wilfred) being cast in the role of “Todd”.

The network has announced that Robert Cooper (Stargate Atlantis, Stargate Universe) has been named series’ showrunner and Oscar-winning director Dean Parisot (Galaxy Quest, Justified, Masters of Sex) has signed on to direct the series’ first two episodes.

Penned by Max Landis – the mind behind cult classic Chronicle – Dirk Gently is an eight-part co-production of AMC Studios, IDEATE MEDIA and IDW Entertainment with Circle of Confusion producing.

“Dirk Gently’s characters are complete originals,” said Sarah Barnett, President and General Manager of BBC AMERICA.  “Sam Barnett and Elijah Wood – who represent genius talent from both sides of the Atlantic – will brilliantly play these unique roles.   Plus, with Robert Cooper and Dean Parisot joining Max Landis, the Dirk Gently creative team is now tremendously interconnected through great experience and thrilling vision.”

Dirk Gently is a comedic thriller that follows the bizarre adventures of eccentric “holistic” detective Dirk Gently and his reluctant assistant Todd, as they wend their way through one big, seemingly insane mystery a season, crossing unlikely paths with a bevy of wild and sometimes dangerous characters, each episode landing them a few random steps closer to uncovering the truth.

Dirk has strange, psychic abilities that enable him to sense invisible tangential connections. He’s taken these strange abilities and has invented a new profession for himself:  that of “holistic detective,” a term that reflects his belief in the fundamental interconnectedness of all things. However, his abilities have condemned him to a life very much alone – this master of universal interconnectedness has spent a life ironically without human connection.

What do you think about the casting of Samuel Barnett as Dirk Gently? Do you believe Robert Cooper is the right man to bring the world of the beloved holistic detective to life? Are you excited to see Dean Parisot bring his considerable directing talents to the first two episodes?

Dirk Gently is set to premiere in the fall of 2016.