Kyle Chandler to Star in Showtime’s ‘The Vatican’

Kyle Chandler (Photo: Showtime)

Emmy-winner Kyle Chandler has been cast in the leading role in Showtime’s “The Vatican,” the network announced Friday.

In the provocative drama about religion, power and politics, Chandler will star as Cardinal Thomas Duffy, “the charismatic yet enigmatic Archbishop of New York, whose progressive leanings excite some and alarm others within the hierarchy of the Catholic Church.”

Acclaimed film director Ridley Scott (“Gladiator”) will direct the pilot.

“The Vatican” will delve into the church’s “modern-day political machinations,” as it explores “the relationships and rivalries as well as the mysteries and miracles behind one of the world’s most hidden institutions,” according to the press release.

Two other actors have also been cast in the pilot: Matthew Goode will play Papal Secretary Bernd Koch, the current Pope’s closest confidante, and German actor Sebastian Koch will play Cardinal Marco Malerba, the Vatican’s Secretary of State.

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“Kyle Chandler is one of the most talented and sought-after actors working today, and was a fantastic creative partner through five seasons of Friday Night Lights,” said David Nevins, Showtime’s President of Entertainment, in a statement. “With Kyle, Matthew Goode and Sebastian Koch, Ridley and Paul have put together a powerhouse cast to anchor this incredibly timely show.”

Chandler is best known on television for his Emmy-winning role as Coach Taylor in the acclaimed drama “Friday Night Lights,” and he’s on a roll right now appearing in not one but two Oscar-nominated films, with co-starring roles in “Zero Dark Thirty” and “Argo.”

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