Watchmen EP Teases Regina King's Character

Angela Abar, the character who Regina King will play in HBO's forthcoming Watchmen -- a TV sequel to the classic comic book series of the same name by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons -- is finally getting a little more fleshed out, as the series premiere nears and executive producer Damon Lindelof has started talking in earnest to the press about the project, which is set to debut in October.

The synopsis for the series reads, “Set in an alternate history where ‘superheroes’ are treated as outlaws, drama series Watchmen, debuting this fall from executive producer Damon Lindelof (HBO’s The Leftovers) embraces the nostalgia of the original groundbreaking graphic novel of the same name while attempting to break new ground of its own.” Lindelof breaks with a lot of other producers and directors, who build a troupe of reliable talent and draw from that same pool over and over. Instead, he said, he tried to resist the urge to cast King in the role, but ultimately could not convince himself.

“I keep feeling like, Why is Regina King not the star when she’s the star?” Lindelof told Vulture. “I would never write something for her where she had to be a liar -- Regina doesn’t lie.”

According to the Vulture report, the ostensible villains are a white-supremacist militia group, and King’s character is a masked cop set to take them down, in a likely nod to Hollis Mason, the original Nite-Owl from Watchmen, who was a police officer when he decided to don his costume for the first time.

“[Regina] liked the idea of Angela in that it was not just about putting on a cool costume and beating up bad guys,” said Lindelof. “It was understanding that she can beat up white supremacists, but she can’t beat white supremacy. She likes the Sisyphean quality of that battle.”

Watchmen will als star Don Johnson as Police Chief Judd Crawford, Tim Blake Nelson as Looking Glass, Lous Gossett Jr. as Old Man, Adelaide Clemens as Pirate Jenny, Andrew Howard as Red Scare, Jean Smart as Agent Blake, and Jeremy Irons as Adrian Veidt/Ozymandias.

“We have no desire to ‘adapt’ the twelve issues Mr. Moore and Mr. Gibbons created thirty years ago,” executive producer Damon Lindelof wrote in a social media post when the series was in its early stages. “Those issues are sacred ground and they will not be retread nor recreated nor reproduced nor rebooted."

"They will, however, be remixed." Lindelof continued. "Because the bass lines in those familiar tracks are just too good and we’d be fools not to sample them. Those original twelve issues are our Old Testament. When the New Testament came along it did not erase what came before it. Creation. The Garden of Eden. Abraham and Isaac. The Flood. It all happened. And so it will be with Watchmen. The Comedian died. Dan and Laurie fell in love. Ozymandias saved the world and Dr. Manhattan left it just after blowing Rorschach to pieces in the bitter cold of Antarctica.”

“I do know a little about it,” Dave Gibbons, who co-created the series, said late last year. “I’ve had conversations with Damon, and I’ve read the screenplay for the pilot. I don’t think it’s my place to say too much about it, other than I found Damon’s approach to be really refreshing and exciting and unexpected. I don’t think it’s gonna be what people think it’s going to be. It certainly wasn’t what I imagined it to be. I think it’s extremely fresh. I’m really looking forward to seeing it on the screen."

“I’ve been resistant to the comic book prequels and sequels, but what Damon’s doing is not that at all, it’s very far away from that,” Gibbons says. “While it’s very reverential and true to the source material (by which I mean the Watchmen graphic novel that Alan [Moore] and I did), it’s not retreading the same ground, it’s not a reinterpretation of it. It approaches it in a completely unexpected way.”

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Watchmen will debut on October 20 on HBO.

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