Casting for the 25+ characters in Silver Shadows was something I dreaded for a long time, and quite honestly, was a big reason why it took me a while to get this project off the ground. I considered not even casting characters, but I realized I had to because it adds some richness to the website. So, I spent days racking my brain on who to cast in these roles. Since Silver Shadows is a period piece, it didn’t make sense to cast 2019 era actors in their current physical appearance. The funny thing is, the time-period factor actually made the job easier. I don’t watch much current television, but I grew up watching TV shows from the 70’s, so it was not much of a challenge imagining actors in these roles.
One of the other challenges in casting was finding younger versions of characters who already existed in The Blackthornes. Some were impossible. so I wound up recasting them for the prequel. Jonas only ever appeared in flashbacks in The Blackthornes, so I never cast anyone to portray him with the exception of slapping a picture of Eli Wallach on his StarLog bio. I was glad to find an actor who I believed could handle a character as powerful as Jonas Lamont. I’d always loved Howard Duff and he was a staple to primetime soaps as the formidable patriarch, so it made sense to use him.
Other characters who appeared in The Blackthornes (primarily in flashbacks) but never got cast are finally given faces in the new series, so that was very exciting for me. Royce Jennings, Renee’s parents Charles and Ann Merteuil, Marilee’s late husband Richard Wells, all play huge roles in Silver Shadows. In addition, Topper Beachamp and son Troy are now given actors to represent them. One of the most exciting to me was finally casting Deacon Edgewater, who was often talked about but rarely seen in the original series. Here, he’s played by another primetime soap veteran, David Selby.
I struggled with who to include in the series. In 1975 many characters weren’t even a thought in their respective parents minds, so it was up to me to create characters to fill in the gaps, but still had a connection to the characters we already know. Those connections become more evident as the episodes progress. In this one, we learn that Ladys has some kind of resentment toward Jonas. Why? Sounds like a flashback in the making to me!
Thanks to everyone who read the first episode. I’m excited for what’s to come, and I hope that everyone likes this continuation of the Blackthornes universe.
Until next time…