Pilot season is upon us and that means an obscene amount of roles are up for grabs with networks looking to fill the lead and recurring roles on the numerous potential new shows. Each one needs talent to anchor the series, whether that is one actor or several leads, and it is important to get that casting right.
If we had our choice, these are the actors who have demonstrated their abilities and who should get a call about leading their own new series next season.
“The Tomorrow People” was unfortunately canceled after one season, but it did expose American audiences to Luke Mitchell. He played John Young, the supporting character you wanted on screen all the time. We almost got to see him return on ABC’s “Members Only,” but the straight-to-series project got canceled before airing a single episode. Mitchell is just one of those actors you are excited to see on screen and luckily we will not have to wait too long since he just nabbed a role on “Agents of SHIELD.” The TV world can do better though by giving putting him at the front of an upcoming project. Hey networks, get on this! Thanks.
Scott Michael Foster
The man that played Cappie on “Greek” and Leo on “Chasing Life” has not been the star of a series? Yeah I was confused about it too. If you only take these two roles into consideration, there is enough to prove the young actor’s talent. Hand this man a drama with comedic elements and just let him run with it.
Steven R. McQueen
McQueen has played Jeremy Gilbert on “The Vampire Diaries” since the very beginning but that journey’s over now. Now I’m not sure how probable it is for the actor to nab the role of Nightwing on “Titans,” a role he has shown a lot of interest in on social media, but he has paid his dues. At points TVD’s Jeremy had some interesting arcs, but it seemed like most of the time they didn’t know what to do with this talented young actor. The time has come for McQueen to get his chance to show what he is capable of. If he does not get Nightwing then The CW should snatch him up for one of their pilots.
Donnell missed out on the ass kicking part of “Arrow” that all the regulars seem to be in on these days, so maybe put him on a series where he can throw a punch. The actor’s fan favorite status is proven by his frequent guest appearances on the CW drama, even after he left the series after its first season. He went over to Showtime where he recurred on “The Affair,” but Donnell would excel as the main lead on an ensemble, something like the ABC pilot “Quantico” about a group of FBI recruits. Hint, hint.
After playing Silas on “Weeds,” I was shocked he was not immediately brought onto a new series. Since then he had a pivotal role on “The Good Wife,” which further proved his screen presence. Between the two, Parrish proved he can play both comedic and dramatic roles. He is the kind of actor that belongs on a network like Showtime or HBO, but he needs something to bring him back to the front of people’s mind. Before anyone cries “The Following,” Parrish is playing a killer not named Joe Carroll, so the role doesn’t really stop him from landing something that puts him in the spotlight.
“Glee” may not be the juggernaut it was at the start, but one thing has been consistent throughout: Naya Rivera’s performance. Starting out in a minor role, her character Santana Lopez became an integral part of the series, especially when the transition to New York was made. Rivera has definitely proven she can draw attention to herself on screen and with her talent, can headline a series for sure.
Claire Holt may have missed out on “Supergirl,” but now other networks have the chance to scoop her up. “The Originals” alum really flourished as the female lead in its first season, which occurred after seasons of brilliantly playing the same character on “The Vampire Diaries.” She may be attached to “Aquarius” on NBC, but it’s event series status could leave the door open for a new role. Holt commands the screen and has the ability to anchor a series if a network gives her the opportunity.
While she had been on “Greek” and “Perfect Couples,” people really took notice when Olivia Munn joined the cast of “The Newsroom.” She played the fast-talking, very intelligent economist Sloan Sabbith, and the role gave her a chance to show her range and ability to take control of a scene, even when she was alongside several incredible actors. Her best exchanges were often shared with veteran actor Sam Waterston. Just think about what she could do with role similar to Julianna Margulies’ on “The Good Wife.”
Anna Camp has had some bad luck when it comes to television, excluding “True Blood.” When “The Mindy Project” retooled midway through season one, her character Gwen was written out of the series. On “The Good Wife” her arc was short. In each role she was brilliant, but the problem is she was relegated to recurring status. Taking into consideration “Pitch Perfect’s” success and it is mind-boggling that she is not the star of her own show full time by now.
As one of the cast members on the brilliant “Friday Night Lights,” Smollett is kind of destined to lead a series. Like Kyle Chandler, Connie Britton and Aimee Teegarden. Or a lead in an ensemble like fellow FNL alum Matt Lauria, Zach Gilford and Scott Porter. “The Defenders” was cut short and her “True Blood” character did not really go anywhere, but she has racked up great recurring roles on series like “Parenthood.” Smollett is truly an amazing actress and it about time she headlined a series.