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J.K. Simmons Cast in Starz Spy Series From ‘Imitation Game’ Director

Oscar winner J.K. Simmons will play the lead in Starz’s upcoming drama series “Counterpart,” Variety has confirmed.

The series is described as “an espionage thriller with a metaphysical twist.” Simmons plays Howard Silk, a lowly cog in a bureaucratic U.N. agency, turning the last corner of a life filled with regret, when he discovers the agency he works for is guarding a secret: a crossing to a parallel dimension. Through Howard and his “Counterpart” on the other side, the show will navigate themes of identity, idealism, what ifs and lost love.

The series is created and written by Justin Marks (“The Jungle Book”), with “The Imitation Game” helmer Morten Tyldum attached to direct the first two episodes. The duo will exec produce alongside Anonymous Content’s Bard Dorros and Keith Redmon (“True Detective,” “The Knick”) and Gilbert Films’ Jordan Horowitz and Gary Gilbert (“The Kids Are Alright”).

MRC is producing with Starz, marking the third project between the two companies, following “Blunt Talk,” starring Patrick Stewart, created and written by Jonathan Ames and exec produced by Seth Macfarlane, and “The One Percent” from Alejandro G. Innarritu and starring Ed Helms and Hilary Swank.

Marks is represented by CAA.

Variety sister site Deadline first broke the news of Simmons’ casting.

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