From left to right: Madeliene Madden (Egwene), Barney Harris (Mat), Josha Stradowski (Rand), Marcus Rutherford (Perrin), and Zoë Robins (Nynaeve)
Photo: Steven Chee, Ori Jones, Benny Stroet, Johnny Carano, Joshua Winger

Although it hasn’t gotten nearly as much attention as the streaming service’s billion-dollar plan to dip into the world of The Lord Of The Rings, Amazon’s adaptation of Robert Jordan’s Wheel Of Time series has been steadily building up its “Hey, I’m also an overly long fantasy epic, you guys!” steam over the last few years. The biggest movement came when Rosamund Pike signed on for the series back in June, starring as central character Moraine, a female magic user (or Aes Sedai, in the show’s argot-heavy terming) looking for the guy who’ll either save the world, or destroy it.

Now we also know who’ll be playing said maybe messiah, with Josha Stradowski cast as farmer-made-good/very-very-bad Rand Al’Thor. Born in the Netherlands, Stradowski is a relative newcomer to the world of English-language acting, although he’s starred in a handful of independent films. Meanwhile, he’ll also be joined by the rest of the just-cast population of bucolic fantasy village Two Rivers, a magical land where the cheekbones apparently flow like wine. Rand’s two best friends Perrin and Mat (who are also all filled-up with destiny; it’s destiny and good bone structure all over the place in these parts) are being played by Marcus Rutherford and Barney Harris, for instance. Rand’s childhood sweetheart Egwene, meanwhile, is being played by Madeleine Madden (currently co-starring in Dora And The Lost City Of Gold), while town healer/resident braid tugger Nynaeve is being played by Zoë Robins, who also appeared in the Shanarra Chronicles show, and is, thus, ahead of the game here in terms of having adaptations of bookcase-breaking fantasy tomes under her belt.

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Of the main cast of the initial book, the only character yet to be announced is Lan, Moraine’s magically bonded bodyguard. (Presumably, this hardened warrior will eventually be played by several rotating castmembers of Riverdale.) Meanwhile, Amazon is presumably already in the process of securing the 8 tons of dirt it’ll need every day to make these fresh-faced children of the future look like the hard-living, shit-caked peasants they’ll be playing.