Orphan Black star Tatiana Maslany has been tapped for a lead role in HBO's Perry Mason limited series, written and executive produced by showrunners Rolin Jones and Ron Fitzgerald. With television director, writer, and producer Tim Van Patten (Boardwalk Empire, The Sopranos, Game of Thrones) set to direct and executive produce, the upcoming project stars Matthew Rhys (The Americans) in the title role.
Set in 1932 Los Angeles, where while the rest of the country recovers from the Great Depression – the city is booming like never before! Oil! Olympic Games! Talking Pictures! Evangelical Fervor! And a child kidnapping gone very, very wrong! Based on characters created by Erle Stanley Gardner, the limited series follows the origins of American Fiction's most legendary criminal defense lawyer, Perry Mason (Rhys). When the case of the decade breaks down his door, Mason's relentless pursuit of the truth reveals a fractured city and just maybe, a pathway to redemption for himself.
Rhys' Mason finds himself at a time in his life when he is living check-to-check as a low-rent private investigator. Haunted by his wartime experiences in France, Mason suffers the effects of a broken marriage and a broken career.
Maslany's Sister Alice is described as a rare sight – the leader of the Radiant Assembly of God, preaching three sermons a day – that's 21 a week – to a hungry congregation and a radio audience that spans the country. Entertainer, politician, God's conduit to the City of Angels, Sister Alice wields great power when she speaks, and plans to use it in ways only she can know.
Rhys and Maslany have one more thing in common, aside from Perry Mason: both are recent lead actor in a drama series winners, with Rhys winning in 2018 for The Americans and Maslany winning in 2016 for Orphan Black.
Robert and Susan Downey are set to executive produce alongside Team Downey's Amanda Burrell, and Joe Horaceck; with Rhys also on board as a producer on the project.