Some fun news for anyone nostalgic for those early days of the coronavirus pandemic: We have another casting announcement for Peacock’s Joe Exotic series (which is based on a Wondery podcast of the same name, but come on, it’s a narrative version of the Tiger King documentary we all immediately got sick of talking about). As reported by Variety, Nat Wolff—recently of Paramount+’s The Stand, though we still think of him as the guy from the live-action Death Note movie for some reason—has been cast as Travis Maldonado, a husband of colorful character (and convicted animal endangerer and attempted murder-for-hirerer) Joe Exotic.
The cast is the real draw for this thing, with Hedwig And The Angry Inch’s John Cameron Mitchell playing Exotic and Kate McKinnon playing his nemesis, Carole Baskin, presumably just because it seemed like a funny idea last year when we were all so goddamn desperate for any kind of humorous distraction. For those who don’t know the basics of the Joe Exotic/Carole Baskin story, please let us know in the comments what you did in quarantine last year, but also here’s the gist: Exotic and Baskin both love big cats that probably should not be kept in captivity, with Baskin crusading against Exotic’s big cats zoo and breeding empire and Exotic fighting back by eventually trying to have her killed. Baskin, meanwhile, has been accused of murdering her husband, who disappeared in the ‘90s. It’s a weird complicated story, perfect for multiple documentaries and podcasts and narrative adaptations. (Lest we forget, a separate Joe Exotic project is in the works with Nicolas Cage playing him.)
Despite initial plans to launch Joe Exotic across the entire NBCUniversal family of networks, on streaming and on regular TV, the company has decided to pull back and launch it exclusively on Peacock.