It was a bit of a disappointment when Phoebe Waller-Bridge departed Donald Glover’s upcoming TV adaptation of Mr. and Mrs. Smith, robbing us of the chance to see what would happen when two of the best minds in television come together. But the more that the series shapes up, the more it looks like Glover isn’t having any trouble creating another must-watch on his own. The casting announcements just keep getting better and better—most recently with the addition of Parker Posey.
Like the 2005 film it’s based on, the series centers around two spies who get married without knowing that they share the same line of work—and an assignment to kill each other. In a move that would give us the couple known as Brangelina, director Doug Liman enlisted Angelina and Jolie to play the film’s titular roles. Glover has been taking a different approach: He himself will be playing Mr. Smith, and no one could have guessed whom he’s having play his wife (and target). Here, the answers to all your questions about the show.
Who will be taking over from Angelina Jolie as Mrs. Smith?
Waller-Bridge’s casting was relatively unconventional; we’ve scarcely seen her give off any of the energy that Jolie does on even just the film’s poster, which finds her in a glamorous evening gown with a high slit exposing her gun. So imagine the surprise when Glover replaced Waller-Bridge with Maya Erskine, an actor most associated with wearing braces in a portrayal of her painfully awkward teenage self in the beloved Hulu series PEN15.
Is Erskine up to the job? The past few years have proven that she certainly has enough range to do so. Since PEN15, she’s joined Tina Fey and Maya Rudolph in Amy Poehler’s directorial debut, Wine Country, and Ewan McGregor and Hayden Christensen in the Disney+ miniseries Obi-Wan Kenobi. A voice role in the YA adventure film Wildwood, costarring Carey Mulligan and Awkwafina, is also in store.
Are we really finally getting more Michaela Coel?
The series really must be promising, because it’s one of only two projects that Michaela Coel has signed on to since becoming the darling of the industry with I May Destroy You, the 2020 BBC series based on Coel’s past experiences with trauma and assault. No word yet on who she’s playing, but we wouldn’t be surprised if she ends up being your favorite character.
Who else is in the cast of Mr. and Mrs. Smith?
On Thursday, Variety reported that Glover has recruited Parker Posey to star in what will no doubt be her second hit TV show within less than two years. (The Party Girl star was most recently praised for her role as a county prosecutor in HBO Max’s miniseries The Staircase—specifically for her delivery of a one-liner on the topic of analingus.) Narcos star Wagner Moura has also come on board, joining previously announced stars Paul Dano and John Turturro. Details about their roles have yet to be released.
Was there any drama between Glover and Phoebe Waller-Bridge?
Six months after news broke of Waller-Bridge’s departure, Glover turned an interview with himself into a chance to clear the air. “Classic creative differences,” he said. After prompting himself to answer if they’re still friends, Glover continued, “What does it mean to be a friend? I still like her. I assume she still likes me.” Clearly, they aren’t sworn enemies, but it doesn’t sound like there will another collab down the road.
When will the series hit Amazon?
Waller-Bridge’s departure may have been a setback, because the series’s release date has been pushed from 2022 to 2023. At least we know that whenever it hits streaming, the series will have been worth the wait.