After playing the absurdly long-winded Ted Mosby for so many years on How I Met Your Mother, a PBS drama seems like the perfect fit for Josh Radnor. As long as that sweet donation money keeps rolling in, no snotty kids will criticize him for taking nine years to tell a story that he could’ve told in a few seconds. As reported by Deadline, Radnor has joined Mercy Street, the Civil War-era drama produced by Ridley Scott that focuses on a hotel being used by the Union army as a makeshift hospital. Radnor will be playing Jedediah Foster, a “surgeon who grew up in a privileged Southern slave-owning household.”
Mary Elizabeth Winstead will be joining Radnor on Mercy Street as Nurse Mary Phinney, “a feisty New Englander and widow” who is new at the hospital. Winstead’s Phinney will reportedly be one of the leads on the show, with the other being “an entitled Southern young woman” named Emma Green whose family owned the hotel that was taken over by the Union Army and turned into a hospital. She’ll be played by an actress named Hannah James who—despite what Google says—is not the guy from the Mummy movies or a Steve Harvey Show writer. Rounding out the cast of Mercy Street will be Veep’s Gary Cole, Peter Gerety, Norbert Leo Butz, McKinley Belcher III, and Shalita Grant.
Mercy Street is sort of being positioned as PBS’ replacement for Downton Abbey, so the network has hired director Downton veteran Jeremy Webb to helm some of the episodes. Roxann Dawson will be taking on some of the directing duties as well, and while she doesn’t have any Downton Abbey experience, she has directed a few episodes of Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D., which, as we all know, is basically that show’s American equivalent.