Ophian Rising Casting Call

Now that the startling conclusion to the Soul Cycle has been out for a while--and none of you have an excuse for not having finished reading it yet--it's high time I followed up on the fantasy cast lists I compiled for Nethereal, Souldancer, and The Secret Kings with a casting call for The Ophian Rising.

NB: Considering the reprehensible state of Hollywood at the moment, there's no way I'd let any mainstream studio option the rights to my work, but a man can dream.

Let's begin, shall we?

Harper Tallon: Bruce Campbell

Bruce Campbell

Iconic character actor Bruce Campbell's equally formidable action and comedic chops make him the only choice to play speakeasy impresario, inveterate gambler, and in-over-his-head smuggler Harper Tallon. Hail to the Chin!

Brell: Christopher Eccleston

Among other roles, Eccleston's celebrated turn as the ninth Doctor proves he can play a thinking man's action hero with a hint of a dark side. He'd ace the role of OR's misfit Night Gen rogue.

Serra: Karl Urban

Karl Urban

If the geek culture dominance of Hollywood that started with The Lord of the Rings has taught us anything, it's that Karl Urban will play anything to please the fans. Other character actors could probably bring the Soul Cycle's weeb swordsman to life, but no one could match Urban for sheer nerd gusto.

Will Konith; Tom Holland

Tom Holland

Tom Holland's interplay with Michael Keaton almost saved the train wreck that was Spider-Man Homecoming. The same youthful, impulsive exuberance tinged with hardship that he brought to his performance as Peter Parker would serve him well as Queen Astlin's outlaw squire.

John Lasker: Daniel Brühl

Daniel Bruhl

In Civil War, he played a mortal man who spun a fiendish web of intrigue to wreak vengeance on a pantheon of demigods. That kind of resume perfectly qualifies Daniel Brühl to play Ophian ringleader John Lasker.

Aesham Daeva: Ted Raimi
Ted Raimi

Readers of prior SC casting calls know I like to keep acting teams that have good synergy together. That preference, along with his sterling record of horror and prosthetics work, makes casting Bruce Campbell's fellow Evil Dead alum Ted Raimi as the Serpent's avatar a no-brainer.

Almeth Elocine: Benedict Cumberbatch
Benedict Cumberbatch

It's a union rule that all SFF films must cast Benedict Cumberbatch in at least a major supporting role.

That concludes the casting call for The Ophian Rising and the Soul Cycle as a whole. I hope you enjoyed this little thought experiment. And by all means, share your opinions about my picks or make your own in the comments.

UPDATE: An astute reader brought to my attention that this cast is a major sausage fest. While most of the female cast from previous installments will be retained in The Ophian Rising, I was reminded that I forgot the book's new key female character. Allow me to remedy that oversight.

Iyana: Bella Thorne

Bella Thorne

I'm not just basing this decision on the actress' personal life echoing the rebelliousness of Nakvin and "Jaren Peregrine's" daughter. Former Disney actress Bella Thorne has the horror experience and the look to play Avalon's wayward princess.

If you somehow haven't read the award-winning Soul Cycle yet, you can buy the complete adventure-horror series now, the first book of which is only 99 cents!

The Ophian Rising - Brian Niemeier


  1. Nathan Fillion would also work for Harper Talon.

    Otherwise yes.

    1. Probably not a guy I'd have considered. But now that you mention him, I think Fillion would take Tallon in a different, though no less valid, direction than Campbell.

      For example, in the rare instances when Tallon displays honor among thieves, Campbell would tend to play it with a wink and a nod--or an eye roll. Fillion-as-Tallon would be sincere.

      You've definitely tempted me to reread the book picturing Fillion as Harper.