Tonight is the premiere of the highly anticipated FX series What We Do in the Shadows, a show created for television by Jemaine Clement and adapted from the movie of the same name. The series is executive produced by Clement, Taika Waititi (director of Thor: Ragnarok and the Shadows film), and Paul Simms, and follows three vampires who have been roommates for hundreds of years in Staten Island, N.Y.
What We Do in the Shadows is a mockumentary-style peek into nightly shenanigans of four vampires who attempt to stay relevant in a fast-moving modern-day world. Like its predecessor, the TV show is chock-full of off-kilter humor and quirky characters who are cranky, intelligent, a bit slow, and well…dead.
Flight of the Conchords‘ Clement created the 10-episode series. In the film, Clement starred as Vladislav, an 862-year-old vampire and former tyrant with extreme powers. Waititi, now known for his entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, played Viago, aged 379, the uptight leader of the vamps’ household. While neither men will star in the TV series (though Clement writes and directs while Waititi directs the pilot), the show maintains its dark and twisted humor and the movie’s impeccable comedic timing.
According to the network, “After an unexpected visit from their dark lord and leader, Baron Afanas, the vampires are reminded of what they were initially tasked with upon their arrival in Staten Island over a hundred years ago — total and complete domination of the New World. But what exactly is the best way to go about achieving said domination? A vérité camera crew follows along as the vampires set out to answer this query.”
With Clement and Waititi not appearing on screen, here’s who is starring in the series and what we know about the season to come.
Kayvan Novak as Nandor the Relentless
The self-appointed leader of the group, Nandor is a great warrior and conqueror from the Ottoman empire. He takes the helm of the group despite his old school (and Old World) tactics, though his friends always question his methods.
Novak is an award-winning British-Iranian actor and voice artist. He won Best Comedy Performance at 2011’s British Comedy Awards for his role in Chris Morris’ Four Lions and appeared in the Academy Award-winning film Syriana alongside Matt Damon and George Clooney. Most recently, Novak co-starred in F. Gary Gray’s Men in Black reboot which hits theaters in June.
Matt Berry as Laszlo
Laszlo is a self-proclaimed “rogue and a dandy and a fop;” he loves mischief and parties, but what makes him happiest is seeing Nandor fail time and time again.
Berry is a BAFTA winner, writer, and musician who recently starred in Toast of London, a series he created for Channel 4. He won his BAFTA for the series which went on to earn six British Comedy Award nominations winning Best New Comedy Program. Previously, Berry starred in The IT Crowd and The Mighty Boosh, and he’s also a voice actor and musician.
Natasia Demetriou as Nadja
Nadja is the Bonnie to Laszlo’s Clyde. She’s a temptress whose wisdom and tales from the past give us a peek inside what it’s really like to be immortal.
Demetriou is a writer and character actress who starred in Sophie to rave reviews. Along with her comedy partner Ellie White, Demetriou has a sketch pilot series that went into production in late 2018 which will air on the BBC. She was also a writer on ITV’s The Nightly Show and served as a writer and performer on ITV2’s current affairs focused show, @Elevenish.
Harvey Guillén as Guillermo
Every vampire story has a Guillermo—Nandor’s servant and protector during the daylight hours who wants nothing more than to be turned into a real vampire like his master.
Guillén was a series regular on MTV’s Eye Candy and ABC Family’s Huge and has had recurring roles on The Magicians and Haters Back Off. In film, he’s best known for his supporting role alongside Vince Vaughn, Rose Byrne, and Owen Wilson in The Internship.
Mark Proksch as Colin Robinson
Colin is an “energy vampire” who feasts on humans but not necessarily on their blood. Proksch’s credits include recurring roles on Better Call Saul and The Office. He’s also appeared on shows like This is Us, Modern Family, Fresh Off the Boat, Bob’s Burgers, Portlandia, and New Girl. Currently he’s writing and acting on the Stephen Merchant produced series Dream Corp LLC for Adult Swim.
What We Do in the Shadows airs tonight at 10 p.m. on FX.