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Over the past five years, Brazilian-born Morena Baccarin has gained considerable acclaim through her roles in two popular television shows. First came her sinister turn as head alien Anna in the reworking of the cult ’80s show V, before landing the part of Jessica Brody, the wife of a soldier who returned home from years in captivity with a hidden agenda, in Homeland. Both performances received nominations, although V would be suddenly cancelled at the end of its second season, leaving the story on an unresolved cliffhanger. Baccarin began her career with a supporting role on Joss Whedon’s short-lived sci-fi series Firefly, later reprising the character of Inara Serra for the big screen spinoff Serenity.
To date most of Barracin’s success has been on television, making appearances in shows as diverse as Stargate SG-1, Numb3rs and The Mentalist, but in April it was announcement that she had joined the cast of the 20th Century Fox comedy Spy alongside Jason Statham and rising star Melissa McCarthy. The Hollywood Reporter have now revealed that Baccarin is to join the cast of an independent animated horror picture called Malevolent. Already on board are Ray Wise, best known to TV viewers as Leland Palmer in Twin Peaks and genre veteran Bill Moseley, whose résumé includes The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 and The Devil’s Rejects.Pitched by the filmmakers as ‘Saw meets Groundhog Day,’ Malevolent will be directed by Funny or Die veteran Jason Axinn and star Dracula: Reborn‘s Dani Lennon as a girl who battles her corrupt father, played by Wise and his henchman (Moseley) in an effort to save her family. In the role of the Gamemaster, who manipulates humanity into fighting each other for the entertainment of her species, is thirty-five-year-old Baccarin, who recently lent her voice to the DC animated feature Son of Batman. Both V and Homeland transformed Baccarin into a star, something that the humble actress struggled to adapt to.
‘I got a little bit used to people stopping me in the street with V, at least in America. Not that I think you ever really get used to it. It will always be a shock to be recognised for anything,’ she admitted to the Daily Mail in 2012. Regarding the loyalty of her fans she told the Independent last September, ‘Sci-fi fans are a different breed. They are so loyal, it’s unbelievable. They’ve seen every sci-fi thing I’ve done and then they started watching Homeland because I was in it.’ Malevolent, based on a screenplay by Jim Cirile and Tanya C. Klein (both of whom will make an appearance onscreen), is planned for release in 2015.