Pushing Daisies‘ Anna Friel is eyeing a return to American television with a co-starring role opposite Kyle Chandler in The Vatican, Showtime‘s high-profile drama pilot from Paul Attanasio and Ridley Scott. Said to evoke The Sopranos and Upstairs, Downstairs, Vatican is described as a provocative contemporary genre thriller about spirituality, power and politics set against the modern-day political machinations within the Catholic church. Friel will play Kayla Duffy, the younger sister of Cardinal Thomas Duffy (Chandler). Unlike her brother, Kayla is a sexually active, hard-partying New Yorker. The Vatican, which co-stars Matthew Goode as Papal Secretary Bernd Koch and Sebastian Koch as Cardinal Marco Malerba, will begin production next month in Rome. Sony Pictures TV is producing with Scott Free and Showtime. Brit Friel, repped by UTA and Ken McReddie Assoc., has been sought for pilots since the end of ABC’s Pushing Daisies, which earned her a Golden Globe nomination. This is the first pilot she has committed to.
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