Benz to lead Defiance

Syfy has cast the lead role in its upcoming sci-fi thriller Defiance, which will air alongside an accompanying video game being developed by Trion Worlds.

The part has gone to Julie Benz, who genre fans will recognize as Darla from the beloved, but not particularly good Buffy spin-off, Angel. Others know her from her role as Rita on Dexter.

We already knew the lead role will be played by Grant Bowler, but we now have news that Tony Curran, Stephanie Leonidas, and Jamie Murray have joined the cast.

I’m most excited about the addition of Jamie Murray, whom you might recognize from her role as H.G. in the fun magical mystery serial, Warehouse 13.

Hopefully this doesn’t mean that the Warehouse 13 spin-off she’s signed up for is called off, but it probably is an indicator that it’s at least delayed. Unfortunately, there has been no news on that project in some time, so the project’s fate remains unknown.

The above-mentiond cast members are slated to appear both in the show and accompanying video game, which will be designed to accompany the show directly, rather than just tie in.

Meaning, the actions of the characters in the show each week will affect the game play, and the actions of the characters in the game, will affect the plot of the show.

Essentially, it’s a grand experiment, and I, for one, hope that it succeeds. Simply put, the potential for this kind of media integration is vast, and it would be a shame if no one ever tries it again, just because Syfy couldn’t pull it off.

We also received this new synopsis of the show/game’s plot:

Set in the near future, Defiance introduces a world where humans and aliens must learn to live together on an exotic new Earth that has been transformed by alien terra-forming machines.

Bowler plays Jeb Nolan, the law keeper in a bustling frontier boomtown that is one of the new world’s few oasis of civility and inclusion. Nolan is a former Marine who fought in the alien conflict and suffered the loss of his wife and child in the war. The trauma transformed him into a lone wanderer in the wilds of this new and dangerous world, bringing him to the town where his peacekeeping skills make him a valuable addition this new community.

The dramatic tapestry of the series and the intense action of the game will exist in a single universe, evolving together over time to tell an overall story that is more powerful together.

Defiance, the show, directed by Scott Stewart, will begin production this spring. The game is currently in development.