Tom Hiddleston will star opposite Claire Danes in Apple TV+’s drama series “The Essex Serpent,” the streaming service said Tuesday.
Based on the novel by Anna Symon, “The Essex Serpent” follows newly widowed Cora (Danes), who, having being released from an abusive marriage, relocates from Victorian London to the small village of Aldwinter in Essex, intrigued by a local superstition that a mythical creature known as the Essex Serpent has returned to the area.
Hiddleston will play the role of Will Ransome, “the trusted leader of a small rural community.” You can see a first-look photo of the Marvel Cinematic Universe star in character above.
“The Essex Serpent” will be directed by Clio Barnard (“The Selfish Giant,” “The Arbor”) with Symon (“Deep Water,” “Mrs Wilson”) serving as lead writer. Jamie Laurenson, Hakan Kousetta, Patrick Walters, Iain Canning and Emile Sherman will executive produce the show alongside Barnard and Symon. Andrea Cornwell will serve as producer.
The drama hails from See-Saw Films, the company behind “The King’s Speech” and “Top of the Lake.” The series joins fellow Apple TV+ international series like “Suspicion,” “Slow Horses,” “Echo 3,” “Shantaram,” “Pachinko” and “Masters of the Air.”
“The Essex Serpent” was originally set to star Keira Knightley, who exited the project last year over coronavirus-related child care concerns. Apple TV+ ordered “The Essex Serpent” to series at the end of August 2020 with Knightley attached as star and executive producer.
Best known for his role as the mischievous god Loki in the Marvel Cinematic Universe — a part he will reprise for the upcoming Disney+ MCU show “Loki” — Hiddleston’s other notable recent credits include “The Night Manager,” “Kong: Skull Island” and “Crimson Peak.”
Hiddleston is represented by Hamilton Hodell (UK) and WME (US).