If the Gold Rush intrigues you and the work of Jack London has long held a special place in your heart, then the Discovery Channel’s new project may be of particular interest to you. The network is planning to deliver Klondike, its first original scripted program, which comes in the form of a six-hour miniseries. Just don’t ask any of the actors what they would do for a Klondike bar.
The miniseries is based upon author Charlotte Gray’s novel entitled Gold Diggers: Striking It Rich In The Klondike. It will tell the story of six strangers as they grapple to acquire fortune and to just plain survive in the harsh frontier of the Klondike located in the Yukon territory.
According to Deadline, a solid cast has been developed. From Game Of Thrones comes Richard Madden, Augustus Prew of Charlie St. Cloud, Robocop‘s Abbie Cornish, Luck‘s Ian Hart, Johnny Simmons from The Perks Of Being A Wallflower, and Conor Leslie is known for work in Chained. Tim Roth and Tim Blake Nelson are still in final negotiations to join perhaps the cast’s biggest name, Mr. Chris Cooper.
Klondike will be produced by Scott Free Productions, Discovery Entertainment One and Nomadic Pictures. It will be directed by Simon Cellan Jones from a script penned by Paul Scheuring, Josh Goldin and Rachel Abramowitz.
At the heart of the cast are a pair of ambitious types who grew up together. They are best friends Bill Haskell, the part played by Madden, and Byron Epstein, acted by Prew. Together they make the journey west in 1897 to take part in the gold rush, “where they face a harrowing journey of adventure, excitement and danger at every turn.”
Cornish’s character Belinda is the female lead. She owns the mill and the loan shop in Dawson City. It’s great to see a female cast in such a role of authority. Word is Belinda is very powerful and favors the land and the locals over outsiders swarming to the Yukon in seek of gold.
Also colorful is Hart’s character, Soapy Smith. Smith never says die and watch your belongings around him. He’s a pick pocket.
Did i call it or what? Last, but not least, Johnny Simmons will play Jack London, “a heavy drinker and adrenaline junkie who’s determined to write a shelf full of novels about his experiences.”