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Neil Gaiman's American Gods Just Added A Major TV Star

Everything about the upcoming small screen adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s American Gods is reason for excitement and anticipation, and the latest bit of casting is yet another giant highlight of the pre-production phase. Gillian Anderson will continue to broaden the genre side of her fantastic career, as she has signed on to the fantasy thriller for an important role.


When she arrives in the war-torn world of American Gods, Gillian Anderson will be playing the role of Media, the New Goddess of Television. That’s extremely fitting, considering the actress is most known for her episodic work, especially in recent years. The New Gods in the show represent modern conveniences and technologies, and Media’s abilities allow her to transform into any character that appears on TV, which could make for some amazing sequences in live-action. In the book, she most notably appears early on as I Love Lucy’s Lucy Ricardo, and we’re hoping that Starz’s licensing deals allow for Anderson to show up as other TV icons throughout Season 1 and possibly beyond.

Media is also the spokesperson for the New Gods, and she’ll be their public face and representative, using celebrity likenesses to keep garnering attention. She is powered by people’s obsession with watching things on TVs, computers and mobile devices, so you can imagine stopping her might require Netflix shutting down, and NOT ON MY WATCH.

Ahem. Anderson’s addition to American Gods has her reteaming with showrunner Bryan Fuller, whom she worked with on Hannibal for its latter two seasons. And hopefully they’ll work together on that again one day. But this definitely works for now.

American Gods centers on the recently released prisoner Shadow Moon (Ricky Whittle), who takes a job as a bodyguard and companion to the mysterious Mr. Wednesday, who will be played by Ian McShane. As they travel across the country, they discover that a war is brewing between the Old Gods, of which Mr. Wednesday is a card-carrying member, and the New Gods to take over people’s interests. Author Neil Gaiman will be around as a writer on the show and obviously as the best muse imaginable.

We couldn’t be happier to see Gillian Anderson joining what will hopefully be one of TV’s next great series. Losing her in Hannibal was hard, although that was helped along by her stellar performances in the dark and brooding stalker drama The Fall (which will be back for Season 3 later this year) and her return to the iconic role of Dana Scully for the X-Files revival. Not to mention her role in the miniseries epic War & Peace.

American Gods will debut the first of hopefully many seasons on Starz (opens in new tab) in early 2017.

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.