The anticipation of the Western noir world of Dark Winds is coinciding with a new casting announcement of Jessica Matten, who will have a recurring role in the series when it premieres next year. Matten is an indigenous actress, a Red River Metis-Cree descendant being directly connected to Cuthbert Grant, the first rebel Metis leader. Her work includes the recent Netflix series, Frontier, where she starred alongside Jason Momoa, and she was a star and associate producer for the acclaimed series Tribal.
Matten has been cast as Bernadette Manuelito, acting alongside Zahn McClarnon, Kiowa Gordon, and Noah Emmerich in the Dark Winds series. About the series and working with the Navajo Nation, AMC says:
Based on the iconic "Leaphorn & Chee" book series by Tony Hillerman, Dark Winds is a psychological thriller that follows two Navajo police officers in the 1970s Southwest, as their search for clues in a grisly double murder case forces them to challenge their own spiritual beliefs and come to terms with the trauma of their pasts. Season one will include six episodes and is expected to premiere on AMC+ and AMC in 2022.
Created and executive produced by Graham Roland (Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan, The Returned, Almost Human, Fringe), the series stars Zahn McClarnon (The Son, Westworld, Fargo), who is also an executive producer, and Kiowa Gordon (The Red Road, Roswell, New Mexico). Vince Calandra (Castle Rock, Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan, Sharp Objects) is the showrunner and also an executive producer. Chris Eyre will direct the pilot and executive produce. Executive producers also include George R.R. Martin, Robert Redford, Tina Elmo, and Vince Gerardis.
Jessica Matten is closely connected to the work with indigenous communities, it's been a close connection throughout her career before Dark Winds. According to her site, "Besides acting, Jessica runs an Indigenous wellness and fitness company with her family called Lemon Cree where they have helped thousands of Indigenous people achieve their fitness, wellness, and health goals. She also runs the viral campaign #N8Vgirls to help spread awareness globally on the issue of murdered and missing Indigenous women in Canada". The psychological thriller is sure to be an interesting and unique look at Western noir, especially with such unique creative forces like Redford and Martin behind it.
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