Stargate star Paul McGillion has landed a role in J.J. Abrams’s pilot Alcatraz, according to Examiner.com. Abrams has a tendency to cast those who have appeared in his previous projects, and McGillion is no exception, having obtained a role in the Star Trek reboot in 2007.
The project began filming today in San Francisco (additional filming locations include Vancouver and Alcatraz itself) and will premiere in the fall on FOX. Like several previous Abrams projects, the show is a drama, possibly with a sci-fi twist, as it “chronicles the efforts of a cop and team of FBI agents tracking down a group of missing Alcatraz prisoners and guards who reappear in the present day,” 30 years after their disappearances, according to Deadline.
The list of cast members is impressive, headed by veteran actor Sam Neill (Merlin, The Triangle, to name but a few sci-fi projects) and Sarah Jones (Sons of Anarchy). The first actor to be cast in a regular role was Jorge Garcia (Lost), and the last, Santiago Cabrera (Heroes). The casting of Greyston Holt as a younger version of Sam Neill’s character suggests we’ll be seeing some flashbacks and/or time travel right off the bat in the pilot.
The script was co-written by Lost executive producer Elizabeth Sarnoff, Steven Lilien, and Bryan Wynbrandt. Sarnoff will be the showrunner and will co-executive produce with Bryan Burk, Abrams, Lilien, and Wynbrandt. Abrams’ Bad Robot Productions is producing the pilot with Warner Brothers TV. The pilot is being directed by Danny Cannon, who has not previously worked with Bad Robot before, but recently directed and executive produced The CW/WBTV pilot Nikita.