Robert Carlyle to Star in New Stargate Series on Sci Fi

New York—Sci Fi Channel said “The Full Monty” star Robert Carlyle has been cast in the leading role of Dr. David Rush in Stargate Universe, the next series in the Stargate franchise.

Production is scheduled to begin in Vancouver in February with an aim of a summer 2009 premiere (starting out with a two-hour movie). Additional casting is under way, the channel said.

Sci Fi has said the new series will be “edgier in tone” and should skew younger than Stargate SG-1 or Stargate Atlantis, the latter of which is wrapping up a five-series run on the network.

Carlyle is best recognized for his roles as Francis Begbie in Danny Boyle’s hit independent film “Trainspotting” and the stripper Gaz in “The Full Monty,” which earned him both a BAFTA and SAG Award. His career began in the UK where he gained attention in the British television series Cracker featuring Robbie Coltrane and starred as the Scottish policeman Hamish Macbeth in the series of that name.

He has starred in such films including “28 Weeks Later,” “The World Is Not Enough,” “Angela’s Ashes” and “The Beach,” where he re-teamed with Boyle. His television credits include the Emmy-winning miniseries Hitler: The Rise of Evil and Human Trafficking, which garnered him an Emmy Award nomination. He recently starred in 24: Redemption opposite Keifer Sutherland.

“We couldn’t be more excited to set Robert Carlyle for Stargate Universe,” Mark Stern, executive vice president of original programming at Sci Fi and co-head of original content at Universal Cable Productions, said in a release. “He brings a depth, intelligence, and complexity to his roles, which will fit perfectly with the fresh, new reinvention of this franchise.”

SGU follows a band of soldiers, scientists and civilians who must fend for themselves as they are forced through a Stargate when their hidden base comes under attack. The desperate survivors emerge aboard an ancient ship missing in the far reaches of space. As they fight to survive, Dr. Rush (Carlyle) works to unlock the mysteries of the ship and return the group home, but evidence of his ulterior motives soon arises.

Brad Wright and Robert Cooper, co-creators of Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis and who both currently serve as executive producers on Atlantis, will serve as executive producers and writers on the new series, distributed by Worldwide Television Distribution.