It’s that time of year when holiday movies abound, and without going full-on Scrooge, Casting Networks is here to give you a list of wholly unrelated content. So, should you be looking for a break from the abundance of holiday cheer, we’ve got you covered. Keep reading for our top picks of all the shows premiering in December — along with the performances to anticipate in each — with nary a sprig of mistletoe or cup of eggnog in sight.
Writer and showrunner Branden Jacobs-Jenkins adapted for television the seminal, sci-fi novel from Octavia E. Butler in order to bring the original story of Kindred to the screen. The upcoming series follows Dana James (Mallori Johnson), a Black, female writer who learns of secrets from her family’s past when she begins time traveling between 22nd-century Los Angeles and a 19th-century plantation. Besides watching the work of Johnson — a relative newcomer — in the lead role, you can also keep an eye out for Micah Stock’s performance as Dana’s husband Kevin. Names like Ryan Kwanten, David Alexander Kaplan, Austin Smith, Sophina Brown and Sheria Irving round out the cast of the upcoming FX Productions show, which drops on Hulu come December 13.
It’s hard to effectively pull off a good action-comedy. But if the trailer for the upcoming Netflix series The Recruit is any indication, the streaming giant may have just done it, thanks to its lead. Noah Centineo executive produces and stars in the show as Owen Hendricks, a recent law school graduate who becomes enmeshed in a high stakes chase just days into his new job as an attorney for the CIA. Between watching Centineo dodge bullets and quip at a bartender his character’s preference for a White Claw over a martini, you can also take in Vondie Curtis Hall’s performance as a CIA head honcho. Plus, be sure to watch for Daniel Quincy Annoh and Fivel Stewart as Owen’s best friends/roommates when The Recruit premieres on Netflix on December 16.
The wealth of Yellowstone origin stories continues. Coming off the success of 1883, creator Taylor Sheridan is back with another prequel installment, which will introduce a new generation of the Dutton clan to fans. Academy Award winner Helen Mirren and Academy Award nominee Harrison Ford will star in 1923 as the respective matriarch and patriarch of the featured family. The series follows their journey during a time when pandemics, the Great Depression and the end of Prohibition all define the mountain west region that the Duttons call home. You can also see the work of Darren Mann, Michelle Randolph and James Badge Dale when 1923 premieres on Paramount+ come December 18.
The Best Man: The Final Chapters
Creator of The Best Man franchise, Malcolm D. Lee, is back with a limited series for Peacock that he co-developed, wrote, executive produced, directed and served on as a co-showrunner. The Best Man: The Final Chapters will see Morris Chestnut, Melissa De Sousa, Taye Diggs, Regina Hall, Terrence Howard, Sanaa Lathan, Nia Long and Harold Perrineau reprising their former roles to tell the newest chapter in the lives of the respective friends that they portray. As for the premise of this latest installment in the franchise, the upcoming limited series will center on “the unpredictable stages of midlife crisis” when met with “midlife renaissance.” You can anticipate seeing how the returning A-listers convey this fresh take on The Best Man world when The Final Chapters drops on Peacock come December 22.
From Kindred to The Final Chapters, we’ve got your non-holiday watchlist covered this December. And whether you’re taking in the work of newcomers or veteran, Oscar-winning actors like Helen Mirren, our picks have plenty of notable performances to look out for along the way.
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