After years of waiting, Halo fans are finally getting a live-action TV series. Although some fans are split in their reactions to the first trailer, there’s no denying that excitement is still riding high for this newest entry in the beloved video game franchise.
The series has already assembled a creative team that includes director Otto Bathurst, known for his work on Peaky Blinders, with Kyle Killen and Steven Kane onboard to act as season one showrunners. And now, we can introduce you to some of the faces fans can expect to see in front of the cameras as well. Here are the cast members we know about so far.
Pablo Schreiber as Master Chief
Veteran actor Schreiber will portray series protagonist Master Chief Petty Officer John-117, a genetically-modified Spartan supersoldier. Master Chief progresses through the series to become one of the greatest warriors of the 26th century and the man holding the line between humanity’s future and the threat of The Covenant.
Schrieber will be familiar to viewers for his work in The Wire, Orange is the New Black as well as Neil Gaiman’s sweeping urban fantasy, American Gods. Schreiber is a proven character actor but this will be his first time as a series anchor. One thing fans are already agreeing on is that Schreiber’s armored-up Master Chief is a dead ringer for the video game version.
Natascha McElhone as Dr. Catherine Elizabeth Halsey
Creator of the Spartan-II Project which created Master Chief and his fellow Spartans, Halsey is also the creator of Cortana, the incredibly advanced AI which may be the last hope humanity has in defeating The Covenant.
McElhone has done a significant amount of film work, with leading roles in The Truman Show, the sci-fi remake Solaris, and Ronin. TV audiences will recognize her for her role as David Duchovny’s long-suffering partner, Karen, on Californication. McElhone has also had series-regular roles on Designated Survivor and The First.
Yerin Ha as Quan Ah
Relative newcomer Yerin Ha has been cast to play Quan Ah, an original character created specifically for the TV series. Ha shared the good news with her friends and fans in a recent post to her Instagram. It reads, in part, that the character is a shrewd, audacious 16-year-old from the Outer Colonies who meets Master Chief at a fateful time for them both.
Jen Taylor as Cortana
Advanced “smart” AI Cortana, Master Chief’s aide and resource, is based on the brain of Dr. Halsey. The producers originally intended for Natascha McElhone to voice Cortana as well but when scheduling obstacles arising from COVID-19 concerns proved impossible for McElhone to negotiate, the team turned to Taylor, who has voiced Cortana throughout the video game series. Taylor’s voice might also be familiar to players of the Mario franchise title for her rendition of Princess Peach.
Charlie Murphy as Makee
Murphy will play another all-original character, Makee, a human orphan who was brought up by the forces of the alliance and taught to despise her fellow humans. Murphy will be familiar as Peaky Blinders‘ Jessie and for a number of other British and Irish series across the pond. The character does not appear to be related to the Sangheili character, Makhee, featured in Halo 5.
Danny Sapani as Captain Jacob Keyes
Sapani will play Master Chief’s friend and confidant Captain Keyes. Keyes is a soldier, a war hero, and a father. Over the course of the show, friction will arise as Keyes struggles to work alongside his daughter, Miranda, and his ex-wife as they seek to find a way to stop The Covenant.
The Ghanaian and British actor has already done some impressive work across the breadth of the sci-fi landscape, having appeared in Doctor Who, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Penny Dreadful, and Black Panther. Sapani has done his share of drama as well, with recurring roles on Killing Eve, and Harlots.
Olive Gray as Dr. Miranda Keyes
Olive Gray will portray Captain Reyes’s daughter, Miranda, a scientist and UNSC Commander who is seeking to understand The Covenant’s technology and culture. But working with her father may prove to be even harder than negotiating the alien culture of The Covenant. Gray is coming off a multi-episode run on Save Me. Gray was a principal cast member of the kid’s detective series, Half Moon Investigations.
Bokeem Woodbine a Soren-066
Woodbine just finished up his critically acclaimed run on Fargo before stepping into the boots of Soren, an ex-military privateer whose story arc will take him into conflict with his former commanders in the UNSC and his old friend, the Master Chief. In addition to Fargo, Movie fans will know Woodbine from his work in Spider-Man: Homecoming and Ghostbusters: Afterlife.
Shabana Azmi as Admiral Margaret Paragonsky
Paragonsky is the Head of USNCs Office of Naval Intelligence. Her Halopedia page describes her as being intelligent, cold, and ruthless and some consider her the “most dangerous person in the USNC.” Dr. Halsey is reportedly the only person to have crossed her and survived.
Azmi is one of the most acclaimed actresses alive in her native India and was a leading actress in the country’s parallel cinema movement, known for its serious themes and sociopolitical elements. Azmi has won India’s National Film Award for Best Actress five times. Halo will be her first appearance in an American-produced television series.
Halo will begin streaming on Paramount Plus on March 24.