Katie Jacobs and Nick Wechsler have cast their independently produced medical drama pilot Dr. Del, with Chloe Sevigny (American Horror Story) and Ted Levine(The Bridge) set for co-star opposite star John Hawkes. Also cast in the project, inspired by Peter Hessler’s New Yorker piece “Dr. Don,” are Leven Rambin, Don Harvey and Nathan Keyes.
Dr. Del, written by John Sayles and directed by Jacobs, follows Del Canyon (Hawkes) as he reluctantly returns to his small hometown Isotope to run his family’s apothecary, the only source for medical attention for hundreds of miles. There, he emerges as the town healer while he grapples between his desire to distance himself from a painful past and his inability to turn his back on a community struggling to find its place in contemporary America.
Sevingy plays Brandy Sommers, a former ski-champ and the proprietor of the only bar in town who moved to Isotope to escape her colorful past. Levine will play Tanner Doggerty, the mayor of Isotope whose grand vision for the town and himself is at odds with Del’s (Hawkes). Rambin plays Shayna Canyon, Del’s estranged daughter, who is struggling to raise her young son, Stinger, while grappling with addiction. Harvey plays Denny Roper, sheriff of Isotope and Del’s childhood best friend. Keyes plays Cody Roper, Denny’s son and Del’s former son-in-law whom he believes is a bad influence on his grandson, Stinger.
The high-end drama pilot is being independently financed by backers with whom Wechsler has had a long-standing relationship on the film side and who had been interested in getting into the TV business. Jacobs, Wechsler and Sayles executive produce the pilot, which will start filming in Los Angeles next month. The finished product is expected to be taken out to cable and broadcast networks in June.