ACADEMY AWARD NOMINEE DAVID STRATHAIRN SIGNS ON FOR SYFY'S ALPHAS
Strathairn Plays Alpha Team Leader Dr. Leigh Rosen in 90-Minute Pilot Directed by Lost's Jack Bender
New York, New York - July 6, 2010 - Syfy has inked critically lauded actor David Strathairn to star in the action-adventure pilot Alphas from writers Zak Penn (X-Men: The Last Stand, The Avengers, The Incredible Hulk) and Michael Karnow, it was announced today by Mark Stern, Executive Vice President of Original Programming, Syfy and Co-Head of Content for Universal Cable Productions, which is the studio for the project. Strathairn won rave reviews and received Best Actor Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild (SAG), and Academy Award nominations for his portrayal of Edward R. Murrow in the film Good Night, and Good Luck. Alphas is executive produced by Gail Berman and Lloyd Braun for BermanBraun Television and will be directed by Jack Bender (director and executive producer of Lost). Gene Stein is also executive producer. It is slated to commence production next month in Toronto.
Alphas follows a team of ordinary citizens who possess extraordinary and unusual mental skills. Using physical feats and uniquely advanced mental abilities, this unlikely team takes the law into their own hands and uncovers what the CIA, FBI and Pentagon have not been able or willing to solve. These gifted individuals must balance their quirky personalities and disparate backgrounds with their not always visible powers as they work to solve crimes, stop the ticking time bomb and catch the enemy.
Strathairn plays the unconventional, eccentric Alphas team leader Dr. Leigh Rosen. Though he comes across as somewhat of an absent-minded professor at times, he is also a cunning and manipulative power-player willing to bend the rules in pursuit of his objectives and in support of his Team.
"We're honored to have an actor of David's versatility, caliber and renown join Alphas," said Stern. "With his incredible range of work in theatre, feature films and television, he is the perfect choice to play the complex and nuanced Dr. Rosen."
David Strathairn's other notable film roles include his portrayals of the title character in Harrison's Flowers (2000); the wisecracking blind techie in Sneakers (1992); Joe St. George in Dolores Claiborne (1995); Theseus, Duke of Athens, in the 1999 version of A Midsummer Night's Dream; and corrupt baseball player Eddie Cicotte in Eight Men Out (1988).
Strathairn is often regarded as a character actor, appearing in supporting roles in many independent and Hollywood films. In this capacity, he has co-starred in Twisted as Ashley Judd's psychiatrist; in The River Wild as Meryl Streep's husband; as Tom Cruise's jailbird brother in The Firm; and as Kim Basinger's pimp in L.A. Confidential.
He has worked frequently with his Williams College classmate and director John Sayles, beginning with his film debut in Return of the Secaucus 7, and including the films Passion Fish, Matewan, Limbo and City of Hope, for which Strathairn won the Independent Spirit Award. Alongside Sayles, he played one of the Men in Black in the 1983 film The Brother from Another Planet.
Other notable television and film roles include The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd; The Miracle Worker; Paradise, The Sopranos, and Miami Vice.
Among Strathairn's recent films are: We Are...Marshall, Hereafter, Steel Toes, The Bourne Ultimatum, The Spiderwick Chronicles, The Trials of J. Robert Oppenheimer, and No God, No Master. In 2009, Strathairn performed in The People Speak a documentary feature film that uses dramatic and musical performances of the letters, diaries, and speeches of everyday Americans, based on historian Howard Zinn's "A People's History of the United States".
Strathairn is represented by ICM and managed by Madeline Ryan of Ryan Entertainment.
BermanBraun is an independent media company whose three divisions � television, feature film and digital media � create and exploit entertainment content and advertising solutions throughout the world. The Santa Monica, Calif.-based company, founded by principals Gail Berman and Lloyd Braun in January 2007, has separate strategic global alliances with NBC and Microsoft to create and distribute creative content across all platforms. In February 2009, BermanBraun launched WONDERWALL � the primary celebrity destination on the MSN Network, ranking ahead of TMZ.com and People.com in traffic, with number one user engagement in the celebrity news space. In April 2010, partners BermanBraun, Hachette Filipacchi Media U.S. (HFM U.S.) and MSN launched GLO, a lifestyle destination site. BermanBraun is currently producing THE CAPE for NBC's 2010/2011 television season. They are also producing DECODED for the History Channel for Fall 2010. BermanBraun also produces SWORDS for The Discovery Channel and IS SHE REALLY GOING OUT WITH HIM? on MTV.
About Universal Cable Studios
Universal Cable Productions creates quality content across multiple media platforms for USA, Syfy and other networks. A leader in innovative and critically acclaimed programming, UCP is the studio behind USA's Royal Pains, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Psych, In Plain Sight, Covert Affairs and Facing Kate, along with Syfy's Eureka, Warehouse 13 and Caprica. The studio also produced both long-running series Monk and Battlestar Galactica. UCP is a division of NBC Universal.
Syfy is a media destination for imagination-based entertainment. With year round acclaimed original series, events, blockbuster movies, classic science fiction and fantasy programming, a dynamic Web site (www.Syfy.com), and a portfolio of adjacent business (Syfy Ventures), Syfy is a passport to limitless possibilities. Originally launched in 1992 as SCI FI Channel, and currently in 95 million homes, Syfy is a network of NBC Universal, one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies. (Syfy. Imagine greater.)