Kiwi actor in US television pilot for Archie comic adaptation

The latest version of the popular comics series is expected to feature a reimagined Archie Andrews and his gang with an ...
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The latest version of the popular comics series is expected to feature a reimagined Archie Andrews and his gang with an edgier tone.

Kiwi actor KJ Apa has landed another big role in the US, this time in the US television network CW's Riverdale, playing Archie Andrews from the Archie comics. 

The 18-year-old star of local productions like Shortland Street and the upcoming series Cul-de-Sac, was cast in the TV adaptation of the popular comic series after a four-month worldwide talent search  

Also joining Apa's Archie will be Ashleigh Murray's Josie McCoy, who's also known as the lead singer and face of Josie and the Pussycats.

Should the pilot take off, Kiwi actor KJ Apa will be the next rising star in Hollywood.
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Should the pilot take off, Kiwi actor KJ Apa will be the next rising star in Hollywood.

Other cast members who would be joining the pilot production are Lili Reinhart (Surviving Jack), Cole Sprouse (The Suite Life of Zack and Cody) and Luke Perry.

The series will follow Archie, Betty, Veronica and their friends exploring small-town life in the fictional town of Riverdale, New York.

However, CW's adaption is expected to be a reimagined version, a reboot of the old-school Archie with Archie and the gang reincarnated as hip young teens of the social media era. 

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But fret not, the perennial love triangle between Archie, Betty Cooper and Veronica is still part of the storyline with Apa's character as a high school student balancing his passion for writing and performing music with his father's wish for him to play football. 

The casting is yet another win in the bag for the young Kiwi actor, who just wrapped filming his first major film credit, A Dog's Purpose, produced by a Steven Spielberg. 

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Mandy Jacobsen of Red 11 Management which represents Apa here in New Zealand, said it was definitely "a big deal".

She said after months of searching for their Archie, producers cast Apa within days of his audition, which was just last week.

"He's been working very hard up there [in Los Angeles], he's determined and he's ideal for that role, it's amazing for him," said Jacobsen.

"They love him up there. Keep an eye on him, he's really going to take off - even more than he already has."

The Riverdale is currently in the pilot stage of production and will be made into a series should the pilot be successful. 

 - Stuff

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