DEADLINE – Vikings star Katheryn Winnick, Lewis Tan (Into the Badlands), Sons of Anarchy alum Tommy Flanagan, and Tzi Ma (Meditation Park) are set as series regulars opposite Iko Uwais and Byron Mann in Netflix’s Wu Assassins, from Tony Krantz of Flame Ventures (24), John Wirth (Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles; Falling Skies) and Nomadic Pictures (Fargo, Hell on Wheels).
Written by Wirth, who also serves as showrunner, Wu Assassins, set in San Francisco’s Chinatown, is a martial arts crime series with supernatural elements. It stars Uwais as Kai Jin, who becomes the latest and last Wu Assassin, chosen to round up the powers of an ancient triad and restore balance once again. Mann plays Uncle Six.
Winnick will play Christine “C.G.” Gavin, an undercover cop caught in the middle of a gang war that’s breaking out in Chinatown. Tan will portray Lu Xin Lee, a suave, fierce intelligent leader who owns and operates his own custom garage a la West Coast Customs and runs a car theft ring for the Triad.
Flanagan is Alec McCullough, an international crime boss with a mysterious interest in San Francisco’s Chinatown. Ma will portray Mr. Young, a kindly Chinatown grocer and a mentor to Kai.
Wirth executive produces with Krantz and Nomadic Pictures’ Oakes and Frislev. Stephen Fung will direct the first two episodes, with Krantz expected to helm another. In addition to playing the lead, Uwais also will serve as producer, lead martial arts and fight choreographer and stunt coordinator.
Winnick stars as Lagertha in History Channel’s Vikings, which is currently in its fifth season. On the film side, Winnick recently wrapped production on action-thriller Polar, alongside Mads Mikkelson, and Vanessa Hudgens, which will be released on Netflix. She’s repped by CAA, Alchemy Entertainment and attorney Jeffrey Bernstein.
Tan can be seen as Gaius Cha in season 3 of AMC’s Into the Badlands and as Shatterstar in Deadpool 2. He previously guest-starred in Marvel’s Iron Fist for Netflix and can also be seen in crime thriller Den of Thieves with Gerard Butler. Tan is repped by Luber Roklin Entertainment and ICM Partners.
Flanagan starred for seven seasons as Filip ‘Chips’ Telford opposite Charlie Hunnam in FX’s Sons of Anarchy. Known for his breakout performance in Mel Gibson’s Braveheart, Flanagan currently can be seen in feature The Ballad of Lefty Brown and he recently appeared in Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and thriller Killers Anonymous. Flanagan is repped by Gersh and Untitled Entertainment.
Ma most recently played the male lead in feature Meditation Park, for which he was nominated for Best Actor at the 2018 Canadian Screen Awards. He also played General Shang in Denis Villeneuve’s Arrival. On TV, he has recurred in ABC’s Once Upon a Time, Amazon’s The Man in the High Castle, AMC’s Hell on Wheels and HBO’s Veep, among others. Ma is repped by Echelon Talent Management and BRS/Gage.
- Public Appearances > Public Appearances in 2018 > Jul 20: San Diego Comic Con 2018 – “Vikings” Panel
TV INSIDER – The wait is nearly over for fans of History’s hit Vikings.
Announced during the Comic-Con 2018 panel moderated by TV Guide Magazine’s Kate Hahn, this series from Tudors writer Michael Hirst, will make its midseason 5 premiere later this year on Wednesday, November 28.
Starring Alexander Ludwig, Gustaf Skarsgård, Katheryn Winnick, and Jonathan Rhys Meyers, among others, the historical saga last saw the Lothbrok family’s divide deepen. And the midseason premiere will pick up with the arrival of Viking legend Dike Rollo (Clive Standen), who stirs up more trouble in Kattegat, which is still reeling from Ivar the Boneless’s (Alex Høgh Andersen) new role as King.
While Bjorn (Alexander Ludwig) and Lagertha (Katheryn Winnick) escape Ivan’s forces with Bishop Heahmund (Jonathan Rhys Meyers), dark times are still ahead in this new Scandinavia.
Floki (Gustaf Skarsgård), in the meantime, will battle the elements of Iceland as well as his “settlers’ desire for revenge,” in order to survive the harsh landscape.
Check out the full trailer below and make sure to stay tuned for more midseason premiere details as they arise.
SYDNEY MORNING HERALD – If Katheryn Winnick ever wondered how deeply her Vikings character, Queen Lagertha, has resonated with audiences around the world, a fan recently provided physical proof. “He rolled up his sleeve and pointed to [a tattoo of] my face. I was shocked!” the 40-year-old Canadian actor says, laughing. “It’s the highest form of flattery to the show, but it was surreal to see my face on his arm. I mean – it’s there for life!”
He isn’t the only enthusiast to ink her face on their skin. Katheryn has taken to chronicling this lasting symbol of devotion to the TV series (now in its fifth season, and airing in over 140 countries) on her Instagram account. She posts snaps of multiple Lagertha tattoos, and asked her 2.1 million followers earlier this month: “This week’s Viking Ink Wars … who killed it?”
The role of Lagertha, a fearless fighter, seems tailor-made for Katheryn. She has a third-degree black belt in tae kwon do, a second-degree black belt in karate and is a licensed bodyguard. With that physicality and warrior mentality, who else would be better placed to rule the Vikings‘ base of Kattegat?
Katheryn inherited her love of martial arts from her Ukrainian father, Roman. One of four children, she was born and raised in Toronto and learnt to speak Ukrainian before English. A self-described tomboy, Katheryn took martial arts very seriously and was spending up to four hours a day training by the time she reached her teens. She opened her first martial arts club at 16, and by 21 was running three of them. She also studied kinesiology.
“My parents always taught me that hard work pays off,” reflects Katheryn, whose tough voice masks a gentle side. “I think that mentality put me in good stead.”
She parlayed her black-belt skills into teaching martial arts stunts, which gave her a taste for Hollywood. “By the time I was teaching other actors how to do stunts, I realised I wanted to be the actress,” she says.
“I got a hint of the incredible life these actors lead – being able to come to work every day and do something new. Sure, it looked challenging and scary, but that’s what motivated me and I knew I had to go for it.”
It is likely that the Season 5 return date will also be announced during the ‘Vikings’ panel at SDCC 2018
INQUISITR – Fans of History Channel’s Vikings have been anxiously awaiting news on the return date for Season 5 of the hit historical drama series. Now, with San Diego Comic-Con scheduled for this weekend, it seems likely a premiere date will be announced then.
According to the San Diego Comic-Con blog, the Vikings panel will be held in Ballroom 20 on Friday, July 20, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
The Vikings guests will include Katheryn Winnick (Lagertha), Clive Standen (Rollo), Alexander Ludwig (Bjorn Ironside), Alex Hogh Andersen (Ivar the Boneless), Georgia Hirst (Torvi), and Vikings creator and writer, Michael Hirst.
Normally in the Vikings panel, details emerge of what fans can expect moving forward in the upcoming season as well as being presented with a trailer filled with new footage. History Channel’s press release has already confirmed that a new trailer will air during the Vikings panel at San Diego Comic-Con, so fans will be able to see new footage of the Season 5 return. It is likely this trailer will also reveal the premiere date, although this hasn’t been officially confirmed yet.
In addition to the Vikings panel, every year at San Diego Comic-Con, History Channel put on some pretty amazing events. For example, last year’s San Diego Comic-Con Vikings event saw a replica of a Viking funeral procession. This year, fans of the show can get their future told by the Seer in a special Vikings booth. According to the press release from History Channel, the details are below.
- Public Appearances > Public Appearances in 2018 > May 13: c
- Public Appearances > Public Appearances in 2018 > May 10: Global Gift Initiative at 71st Cannes Film Festival
- Public Appearances > Public Appearances in 2018 > Mar 6: “The World Of Vikings: History on Film” Event in Toronto, Canada
- Films > Polar > Filming in Toronto Canada – March 20, 2018
- Magazine Scans > 2017 Scans > 2017 Cinemania – December
DEADLINE – High School Musical alum Vanessa Hudgens, Katheryn Winnick of the History Channel series Vikings, and Matt Lucas (Alice In Wonderland) have signed up to co-star in Polar, an action-thriller directed by Swedish filmmaker Jonas Åkerlund and starring Mads Mikkelsen. The pic, based on the Dark Horse action noir graphic novel Polar: Came From the Cold by Victor Santos, hails from Constantin Film and Netflix, which will distribute it sometime next year.
Written by Jayson Rothwell, the story centers on the world’s top assassin, Duncan Vizla (Mikkelsen), aka The Black Kaiser, who is settling into retirement when his former employer marks him as a liability to the firm. Against his will, he finds himself back in the game going head to head with an army of younger, faster, ruthless killers who will stop at nothing to have him silenced.
Constantin’s Robert Kulzer, Jeremy Bolt, and Hartley Gorenstein are producing, while Mikkelsen, Constantin’s Martin Moszkowicz, and Dark Horse Entertainment’s Keith Goldberg and Mike Richardson serve as exec producers on the film, which is currently in production in Toronto.
Hudgens is repped by CAA and Untitled, Winnick by CAA and Alchemy Entertainment, and Lucas by Troika and WME.
EW – Warning: This article contains spoilers for Wednesday’s episode of Vikings, “Moments of Vision.”
Vikings has always been a violent show, and past seasons of History’s epic have featured massive battle scenes full of character fatalities. But Wednesday’s midseason finale, “Moments of Vision,” takes an unexpected approach to the climactic showdown between the forces of Ivar (Alex Hogh) and Lagertha (Katheryn Winnick). The episode tracks multiple characters in a nonlinear fashion, cutting from the fighting to preparations for the battle. There are flashbacks, and sequences that could either be spiritual visions or dying hallucinations. “I was quite determined that we would just do a unique thing,” says Vikings creator Michael Hirst, who wrote this episode (and all the others.) “A battle scene told from different points of view, including points of view of people who died.”
EW talked to Hirst about the bloody, poignant episode, and what it means for the show going forward.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: “Moments of Vision” saw a lot of long-running characters die, including Jasper Pääkkönen’s Halfdan and Josefin Asplund’s Astrid. How much did you plan out these character exits before working on the episode? In the writing process, did you save some characters, or write deaths you weren’t expecting?
MICHAEL HIRST: At one stage, I was sure that a son of Ragnar would kill another son of Ragnar. So that would probably be between Hvitserk and Ubbe. And I went into that final scene thinking that that was gonna happen. And then it didn’t happen, which was mildly surprising to me. A mirror image of that was Harald and Halfdan, and I wasn’t sure what was gonna happen, but then [Harald] killed him. I knew that Astrid was going to die, even though I didn’t want her to die! I loved her.
What I want to show, as well as cool action, is psychological damage. A bigv thing is to try to humanize the Vikings, try to show they were just like you and me. They’re fighting battles every other year, or whatever it is. And it’s gonna wear them down. With Lagertha, I wanted to start showing the psychological impact of continuously being between life and death.
There were interesting moments near the end of Ragnar’s time on the show, when he would have visions of his past life or younger days on the farm. It felt like a lot of characters had moments like that in this episode.
I had a lot of friends who were gay who died in the early AIDS epidemic of the ’80s and ’90s. They died in their 30s, essentially. That is the typical lifespan of a Viking. They didn’t live for very long. So Halfdan’s death, and the death of Torvi’s first son in the battle, and Astrid’s very young. Young people dying is a very powerful part of that episode.