If you're a fan of Richelle Mead, then you already now all about the Vampire Academy. So if you're going to adapt a story about a royal vampire society, why not get someone who has a history with similar characters? That's exactly what Peacock has done for their take on this story from the international best selling author.
Julie Plec and Marguerite MacIntyre, who are frequent collaborators, will serve as co-showrunners, writers and executive producers for this series. Plec is best known for her work on The Vampire Diaries, The Originals and Legacies...all fan favorites. Plec will also direct part of the 10 episode first season, along with Bille Woodruff (first episode), Luis Prieto, Jesse Warn, Erica Dunton and Geoff Shotz. Additional producers include Emily Cummins, Don Murphy, Susan Montford, Deepak Nayar and Jillian DeFrehn.
For anyone not already familiar with the novels, here's a quick synopsis: "St. Vladmir’s Academy isn’t just any boarding school — it’s a hidden place where vampire royals are educated and half-human teens train to protect them from the savage ‘Strigoi’ vampires who would like to see them destroyed."
Normally that's all we would get, but Universal Television has also announced the main cast. Here they are, in no particular order:
- SISI STRINGER (L-pictured above) (Mortal Kombat) will play Rose Hathaway, a vampire-human hybrid known as a Dhampir. Fiery and outspoken, Rose is a true fighter in spirit and in practice. She always jumps into action, and more often than not, this results in demerits. She might be the strongest fighter in her class, but her success will depend entirely on her willingness to toe the line when it counts.
- DANIELA NIEVES (R-pictured above) (Sex Appeal, Five Points) will play Lissa Dragomir, a Royal Moroi vampire. Growing up the younger sister to the heir apparent, Princess Vasilisa Dragomir is a carefree, kind-hearted, royal princess coasting through her studies and happily chasing fun. Lissa is uninterested in the political machinations of the Royal Court or the hypocrisy of Moroi royal society. But with a sudden death in her family, Lissa is thrust into a role she’s neither trained for nor is emotionally equipped to handle.
- KIERON MOORE (Masters of the Air, Sex Education) will play Dimitri Belikov, the model of a Dhampir guardian: lethal, disciplined, discreet, and totally committed to his role as bodyguard to the ruling Moroi, the “good,” mortal vampires of his world. He lives by a deep moral code, but beneath his stoic, watchful surface, there’s an expansive spirit that could threaten to expose the underlying tension between his sense of what’s right and his formal duty to the Moroi.
- ANDRÉ DAE KIM (Degrassi, Star Trek: Strange New Worlds) will play Christian Ozera, a Royal Moroi vampire. Intelligent and thoughtful, Christian is the pariah of the school and royal court, due to his parents’ unforgiveable societal sins. Well-read and hungry for knowledge, he searches for faith-based answers and discovers a kindred spirit who is also looking for the truth.
- J. AUGUST RICHARDS (Angel, Generation) will play Victor Dashkov. Victor is a Moroi noble vampire with a heart of gold who’s highly regarded for his role as advisor and political strategist to Moroi dignitaries. He’s a fierce loyalist who uses his intelligence and influence to protect that which he values most: the well-being of his husband and two adopted daughters, as well as the betterment of his Moroi community.
- ANITA-JOY UWAJEH (West End’s Cyrano de Bergerac and King Lear), will play Tatiana Vogel. Tatiana is a Moroi vampire and political underdog who slowly takes the royal court by storm. Motivated by love and a sense of justice, Tatiana has a unique skill of making herself seem of no consequence until we realize much too late that she was always the one to watch.
- MIA MCKENNA-BRUCE (West End’s Billy Elliot The Musical, The Dumping Ground) will play Mia Karp, a student at St. Vladimir’s Academy. Witty, cutting, and just the right kind of ruthless when necessary, non-Royal Mia has a long-term plan to social climb her way into the ranks of royalty, with all the privilege and freedom that entails. A plan complicated by her instant chemistry with Meredith, a Guardian-in-training, as Mia struggles to reconcile her attraction to Meredith with her lowly status.
- RHIAN BLUNDELL (Torchwood: Believe, Doctor Who: The Dread of Night) will play Meredith, a smart, strong-willed Dhampir who is a keen observer, which makes her an excellent strategist and a valuable asset. She has little patience for Rose’s volatility or Mia’s elitism, and regularly calls both of them out.
- JONETTA KAISER (Tales, Breakwater) will play Sonya Karp. Quiet, careful and decidedly odd, Sonya is not of royal bloodline and sits out on the fringe of Moroi society, preferring to spend her time in the library or her gardens. Not a person who likes a scene, nonetheless she has a quiet but profound power of her own. She is taken by surprise when a Dhampir Guardian named Mikhail shows interest in her, a relationship that will expose both the brightest and darkest parts of her heart.
- ANDREW LINER (Grown-ish) will play Mason Ashford. Charming, loyal and popular, Mason is Rose’s main competition in the quest to become the number one Guardian-in-training. Though their relationship is casual on her side, he is hopeful she will finally look at him and see him as something more.
The series, which will be shot in Spain, does not have a release date just yet. I'm sure there will be plenty more updates coming, so keep checking back.
Photo Credit: (L-R) Richie Swindler/Savannah Celine