Deadline reports that Nathaniel Parker has been cast as Achish, king of the Philistines, in Of Kings and Prophets, the ABC series about Saul, David and Samuel that is currently going through some retooling before it shoots its first season.
This is rather amusing, as Parker previously played the lead role in David, a two-part 1997 miniseries that was produced as part of The Bible Collection.
Achish will be a regular character on the series, and is described as “cagey, shrewd and lethal”. The part was played in the pilot by Mark Ivanir, but it was one of a few roles that the network decided to recast before going ahead with further episodes.Parker is at least the third member of the Kings and Prophets cast who has significant Bible-movie experience. Saul is being played by Ray Winstone (Noah, the TV version of Ben-Hur), and Jonathan is being played by Haaz Sleiman (Killing Jesus).
Achish is the name of more than one Philistine king in the Bible, which has led some scholars to suppose that “Achish” may have been a title, like “Pharaoh” in Egypt, rather than a name per se. At least one of these kings gave David and his men refuge from King Saul, so that could end up being one of the subplots on this series.
As ever, we shall just have to wait and see.
— The image above shows Parker as David (centre) in the 1997 miniseries, flanked by Jonathan Pryce as Saul (right) and Leonard Nimoy as Samuel (left).