We’ve been talking about Syfy’s “The Magicians” for a while now, and today the network and Universal Cable Productions (UCP) announced that production of Season 1 has kicked off in Vancouver, Canada. The 13-episode season will air in early 2016 on Syfy.
The series centers on Quentin, a brilliant grad student chosen to attend Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy, a secret upstate New York university specializing in magic. He and his 20-something friends soon discover that the magical fantasy world they read about as children is all too real – and poses grave danger to humanity.
Olivia Taylor Dudley (pictured right) has joined the cast as a series regular, it was also announced today. Dudley plays Alice, an intensely shy and delicately lovely young woman. Born of a magical but neglectful family, Alice is an outcast among her fellow students at Brakebills but nonetheless emerges as the most brilliant magical practitioner in her class.
Dudley appears in the Lakeshore/Lionsgate film The Vatican Tapes opposite Michael Pena, just wrapped production on Paranormal Activity 5 for Paramount, and can be seen in the feature Dude Bro Party Massacre III. She was a lead in Oren Peli’s ensemble horror film The Chernobyl Diaries from Alcon/Warner Bros. and has also appeared in The Dictator, Moneyball, and Just Go With It.
Starring Jason Ralph (Quentin Coldwater), Stella Maeve (Julia), Hale Appleman (Eliot), Arjun Gupta (Penny), and Summer Bishil (Margo), “The Magicians” is based on Lev Grossman’s best-selling novels.
Additionally, “The Magicians” announces the following recurring guest stars for Season 1:
– Rick Worthy as Dean Fogg, the formidable Dean of Brakebills — an exacting leader and a keeper of secrets, balancing a great sense of authority with dry wit. Worthy is best known for his roles in “Battlestar Galactica” as Simon and “Supernatural” as the Alpha Vampire.
– Anne Dudek as Professor Sunderland, a smart, charmingly scatterbrained woman dedicated to teaching Brakebills students how to hone their magical skills. Dudek is best known for her series regular role on “Covert Affairs” as well as recurring roles on “House,” “Mad Men,” “Bones,” “Less Than Perfect,” “Those Who Kill,” and “Big Love.”
– Jade Tailor as Kady, a tough, rebellious, and sexy Brakebills student who attracts Penny’s attention in and out of the classroom. Jade previously worked with “The Magicians’s” John McNamara and Sera Gamble on their NBC series “Aquarius.” Jade also recurs on TNT’s “Murder in the First.” Other television credits include “True Blood” and “Vegas.”
– Esmé Bianco as Eliza, a paramedic who has a hand in initiating Quentin’s journey into real magic. Bianco is best known for her three season-long role of Ros in “Game of Thrones.”
Groundswell Productions’ Michael London and Janice Williams (Milk) will executive produce “The Magicians.” John McNamara (“Aquarius”) and Sera Gamble (“Supernatural”), writers of the pilot, will serve as executive producers. Mike Cahill (I Origins) directed the pilot. Universal Cable Productions will serve as the studio.
Lev Grossman’s The Magicians trilogy is an international sensation, published and widely praised in more than twenty countries. The epic conclusion to the series, The Magician’s Land, opened at #1 last summer on the New York Times Hardcover Best Seller’s list and was widely acclaimed as one of the best books of the year.
Cast photos can be found below; look for more soon!