Netflix Casts John Cho as Spike Spiegel for Live-Action Cowboy Bebop Series

Netflix is rolling out some casting news for their upcoming live-action Cowboy Bebop series.

Netflix announced John Cho will play Spike Spiegel. Cho is known for his roles in Harold and Kumar as well as Sulu in the Star Trek movie franchise. He recently appeared in CBS All Access’ reboot of The Twilight Zone.

Variety indicates Spiegel’s character is described as “an impossibly cool bounty hunter with a deadly smile, a wry wit, and style to spare. He travels the solar system with his ex-cop partner, Jet, pursuing the future’s most dangerous bounties with a combination of charm, charisma — and deadly Jeet Kune Do.”

Netflix would elaborate on Spiegel’s character, “Haunted by visions of the woman he loved and lost, Julia, Spike’s criminal past slowly catches up to him — putting him and the Bebop crew in the crosshairs of the solar system’s most lethal criminal organization, the Syndicate.”

Cho will be joined by former Luke Cage actor Mustafa Shakir. Shakir previously played Bushmaster on Luke Cage. He will take on the role of Spiegel’s partner Jet Black.

Jet Black’s is described as “one of the few honest cops in the solar system before an ultimate betrayal robbed him of all that he loved, forcing him into a vagabond life of hunting bounties to put food on the table. Jet is an inveterate jazz enthusiast and Captain of the Bebop.”

Netflix adds, “Jet holds tight to his honor and optimism, acting as a father figure to his misfit crew, always seeing the best in his partner, Spike… until it’s too late.”

They will be joined by Daniella Pineda and Alex Hassell. Pineda will play Faye Valentine while Hassell will take on the role of Vicious. Valentine is described as “a bold, brash and unpredictable bounty hunter. Suffering from amnesia after years of being cryogenically frozen, Faye does whatever it takes to survive. Whether she’s lying, stealing, or just being a thorn in Spike and Jet’s side.”

Netflix elaborates on Faye’s character, “She’s always on the search for the person with the key to her identity. In the meantime, she’ll fake it till she makes it.”

Pineda recently appearted in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom where she played Zia Rodriguez. She played Sophie Deveraux on The Vampire Diaries as well as The Originals.

Hassell’s Vicious is “a man who thoroughly enjoys a good kill, Vicious is the Syndicate’s most notorious hitman. He’s also Spike Spiegel’s ex-partner and arch-enemy.”

Here’s how Netflix described Vicious, “Once he was Spike’s best friend, now he’s his mortal enemy and is obsessed with taking him down.”

Hassell doesn’t have many credits to his name. He will play Translucent in Amazon’s The Boys. He played Louis in Suburbicon and John Thomas in Two Down.

The Cowboy Bebop live action will be co-produced by Netflix and Tomorrow Studios. Cowboy Bebop was originally created by director Shinichirō Watanabe and animator Toshihiro Kawamoto. The anime debuted in 1997 and ran for 26 episodes. The series would be followed up by a movie in 2001, Cowboy Bebop: The Movie.

Watanabe will serve as a consultant on the live action show. Andre Nemec, Josh Applebaum, Jeff Pinkner, and Scott Rosenberg will be showrunners as well as executive producers. Alex Garcia has been tapped to direct the first two episodes.

What do you make of these casting decisions?

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