Frequent Lost director Jack Bender is eyeing a career in features, yes, but he's also sticking true to his roots by directing the SyFy pilot Alphas, about a team of sorta-superheroes to take it upon themselves to solve crimes the government can't. Now Bender has got an actor with serious clout to join him on the adventure: Deadline Hollywood reports that the Oscar-nominated David Strathairn is in negotiations for the lead role.

Strathairn rose to prominence with that nominated lead role in Good Night And Good Luck, but in general he's your usual, exceptionally handsome working actor, popping up in everything from The Bourne Ultimatum to a recent episode of House. In Alphas he would play the team leader, kind of like a sci-fi version of Hannibal from The A-Team I guess, an eccentric professor also capable of doing pretty much anything to get what he wants. Strathairn will also be joined by Ryan Cartwright, who is in talks to play a team member with Asperger's and an ability to "read" wireless communications, making him pretty much the perfect spy.

Alphas had a previous life in development for NBC under the name Section 8, only to be halted by the 2007 writer's strike and left behind. SyFy redeveloped it slightly and has put it together again, and really, it sounds like a much more promising pilot for them anyway. Every network Lost knockoff thus far has failed miserably, but SyFy does a good job of catering to its audience and getting eyeballs where the network might not even bother. Collecting a cast like this one, maybe SyFy is making a play to usurp AMC as the king of basic cable drama.

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