Much like the casting process went for The Walking Dead, the upcoming companion series Fear the Walking Dead is filling its cast with recognizable faces that aren’t quite major stars. So goes the latest addition, as Panamanian actor and musician Rubén Blades has landed a role in the AMC horror drama.
As you might have expected, there isn’t a whole lot that is currently known about the character that Rubén Blades is set to play, although if his fictional counterpart would also be named Ruben Blades, he’d have the coolest name on TV. According to Deadline, he’s set to play Daniel, the father of Ofelia, a similarly under-described character to be portrayed by 666 Park Avenue’s Mercedes Mason. The character descriptions that have been previously released don’t seem to be describing either of these characters, so we’ll have to wait a bit longer before discovering what they’re all about.
At this point – at least according to IMDb – Fear the Walking Dead doesn’t yet have a music supervisor or a composer or anything. So how cool would it be if, instead of the recognizably creepy orchestration of Bear McCreary, this spinoff series took to using Blades’ Latin jazz and salsa music to convey the horror of its Los Angeles setting? I can’t be the only one that would be into that, can I?
Recognizable from early roles in films such as Mo’ Better Blues and Predator 2, Blades has had a pretty good run over the years. His most notable TV work was for the shortlived 2001 ABC medical drama Gideon’s Crossing, and Fear the Walking Dead will be his first regular role since that one. In the past few years, he’s starred in films such as Daniel Espinosa’s crime actioner Safe House and Ridley Scott’s crime thriller The Counselor. He’ll soon be seen opposite Robert de Niro and Édgar Ramírez in the Roberto Duran biopic Hands of Stone.
Fear the Walking Dead stars Cliff Curtis as high school teacher Travis and Kim Dickens as guidance counselor Madison, both of whom move in together with their children. Travis has a son with anger problems, while Madison has a drug-addled son, Nick (Frank Dillane) and an independently-minded daughter Alicia (Alycia Debnam Carey). The show will focus on the earliest days of the zombie outbreak, before anyone really understands what’s happening, and while the dead are still relatively fresh-looking. It will take a deeper look at the violence that comes to rule the post-apocalyptic world, and how these characters work out how to survive in a city with millions of potential walkers in its population.
Viewers can expect to see Fear the Walking Dead hitting AMC this summer, although an official premiere date has yet to be released.