The last time America wrapped Doctor Who in its Cthulhu-like tentacles, we got guest stars on the level of, er, Eric Roberts. But now, with series spin-off Torchwood getting an infusion of co-production cash from US cable channel Starz, the quality level is ticking up just a little bit. While you won’t be seeing George Clooney romancing Gwen anytime soon, Bill Pullman and Mekhi Phifer have signed on to the cast of the new fourth season, known as The New World.
According to Deadline, Phifer will play former CIA agent Rex Matheson, a high-flyer with a quick wit whose perspective on life changes when his life is put in danger. Pullman, on the other hand, will also be a regular, but playing Oswald Jones, a highly intelligent murderer who gets out of prison on a technicality and becomes a media sensation. While it seems like he’s repentant for his crime, he’s also full of rage.
While Phifer has spent a good chunk of his time on TV, with work on the likes of ER and Lie to Me, Pullman has largely stuck to the odd guest appearance, dipping his toe deeper with dodgy 2005 religio-thriller miniseries Revelations.
In other Torchwood casting news, Arlene Tur has also joined up, signing on play a surgeon named Vera Juarez. She’ll be acting alongside John Barrowman’s Jack and Eve Myles’ Gwen, the last surviving members of the original line-up when the series shoots in 2011.
Now all we need to do is wait for the first press release from series overlord Russell T Davies commenting on how "lovely" and "brilliant" everyone is and we'll know it's really happening.