The first member of the Umbrella Academy has been cast.
Variety reports that Ellen Page will be joining the cast of The Umbrella Academy in the role of the superhero the White Violin.
The Umbrella Academy will be a live-action show based on the eponymous Dark Horse comic series about a dysfunctional family of superheroes who reunite after their father’s death. These superpowered individuals — Luther Hargreeves/Spaceboy, Diego Hargreeves/The Kraken, Allison Hargreeves/The Rumor, Klaus Hargreeves/The Séance, The Boy/Number Five, Ben Hargreeves/The Horror, and Vanya Hargreeves/The White Violin — possess divergent personalities and abilities that have resulted in estrangement from one another. But they must work together to solve the mystery of the death of their father, Sir Reginald Hargreeves, or The Monocle.
Page’s character, Vanya, will reportedly be the black sheep of the Hargreeves family. Vanya is Reginald’s adopted daughter, and doesn’t seem to have any superpowers of her own. This introduces a slew of identity issues for Vanya, who struggles to find her place in the world.
Steve Blackman (FX’s Fargo) will serve as The Umbrella Academy‘s showrunner, with Jeremy Slater (Fox’s The Exorcist) penning the pilot script. Variety first announced an Umbrella Academy adaptation several months ago. Cindy Holland, Netflix’s vice president of original content, praised the comics in a statement, saying:
“What drew us to ‘The Umbrella Academy’ is that it’s wholly unique, visual, and stylized. These aren’t the usual superheroes, and this series will embrace the singular tone of the graphic novels — dark yet humorous, supernatural yet grounded in reality. We’re excited to see this world and introduce these unforgettable heroes to Netflix members around the globe.”
Gerard Way, creator and writer of “The Umbrella Academy” and executive producer on the Netflix adaptation, added, “I couldn’t think of a better place for the vision [illustrator] Gabriel Bá and myself had when creating the comic, and cannot wait for people to experience that world as a live action show.”
The visual spectacle of the Umbrella Academy as a unit — including a character with a gorilla body, no less — already provides a certain grotesque intrigue to the show. This also won’t be the first time Page has stepped into superhero territory, which makes The Umbrella Academy doubly exciting. Many will already know Page as a criminally underused Kitty Pryde/Shadowcat in Fox’s X-Men series, where she appeared in X-Men: The Last Stand and Days of Future Past.
Page’s recent credits include My Days of Mercy and The Cured, both of which premiered at TIFF this year, and the extremely unfortunate Flatliners remake. She also co-hosts and executive produces the documentary series Gaycation for Viceland.