foundation cast

Hollywood has been trying to adapt Isaac Asimov’s seminal sci-fi classic Foundation for years, but it looks like Apple might just succeed with its highly anticipated series from David S. Goyer. Apple TV+ has tapped Jared Harris and Lee Pace to lead the Foundation cast in the 10-episode drama series based on Asimov’s epic sci-fi saga.

Apple announced that Jared Harris (Chernobyl) and Lee Pace (Halt and Catch Fire) will star in the Apple TV+ series Foundation, which chronicles ” the epic saga of The Foundation, a band of exiles who discover that the only way to save the Galactic Empire from destruction is to defy it.” Harris will star as Hari Seldon, a mathematical genius who predicts the death of the empire, while Pace will star as Brother Day, the Emperor of the Galaxy.

Isaac Asimov is considered one of the founding fathers of science fiction largely because of the widespread influence of his Foundation series, which spans seven books published over the course of 40 years. The sci-fi saga first began as a collection of short stories published in 1951, and was expanded into a now-famous trilogy of novels — which it remained for decades before Asimov was convinced to write more novels, the last of which was published posthumously. While the Foundation series has left a massive impact on the sci-fi genre as a whole, Hollywood has struggled to bring it to the big screen. Roland Emmerich first tried to adapt it into a feature film at Sony in 2011, but rights lapsed in 2014, allowing HBO to swoop in for Jonathan Nolan to turn into a series. However, Nolan opted to make Westworld instead, and the rights ended up in Apple’s lap.

As we’ve seen with Apple’s star-studded catalog so far, the tech company has no shortage of A-list stars and money to pour into its original titles, and Foundation could certainly use both. The ambitious story, which chronicles the waning days of a future Galactic Empire inspired by the collapse of the Roman Empire, spans generations and needs solid stars to anchor such a cerebral saga. I’ve never read Foundation, but /Film managing editor Jacob Hall notes that Foundation is more about grand concepts than characters, so Harris and Lee will be given plenty of creative freedom to bring their characters to life. Harris is particularly suited to play the genius Hari Seldon — a guy so smart he predicts thousands of years of history — as the Emmy nominee has proven in Chernobyl that he excels at playing the smartest guy in the room.

David S. Goyer (The Dark Knight, Terminator: Dark Fate) is set to serve as showrunner and executive producer for the series, which according to TV Line, will be 10 episodes long. David Ellison, Dana Goldberg (World War Z, Star Trek: Beyond), and Marcy Ross (Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan) will executive produce under Skydance Television, while Josh Friedman (Avatar 4) and Robyn Asimov  will also serve as executive producers.

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