When Alpha comes to theaters on August 17, we’ll jump back in time 20,000 years to follow the journey of Keda, a young hunter who changes the course of human-animal relations. Keda is severely injured by a steppe bison during a hunting expedition and thrown from a cliff. He survives the ordeal but must brave the elements to find his way back home. While trying to survive the journey, Keda befriends a wolf. Their unlikely partnership forges the first bond between a human and a canine.
Alpha is directed by Albert Hughes, with a screenplay written by Daniele Sebastian Wiedenhaupt. The historical drama will be unlike anything else coming to theaters this year. Here’s the cast of Alpha.
Australian actor Kodi Smit-McPhee plays Keda. This isn’t a one-man show, but he’s very much the primary character – or at least the primary human. Keda fights for survival, braving the elements, while tending to the needs of a wolf who has become his companion.
Smit-McPhee’s early work was on TV, in shows like Monarch Cove and TV movies like The King. His first feature film role was Raimond in 2007’s Romulus, My Father, but his performance in The Road really put the young actor on the map. He took one of the leading roles in 2010 romantic horror film Let Me In, and has had a steady career ever since. You’ll hear him in Paranorman, and see him in Romeo and Juliet, and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. He played Nightcrawler in X-Men: Apocalypse, which led to a brief cameo in Deadpool 2, and will reprise the role in Dark Phoenix.
Varela plays Shaman. As the upcoming film focuses very much on Keda, relatively little is known about Shaman. Varela has appeared in many films and TV series over the years, but she is best known for her portrayal of the title character in the 1999 TV movie Cleopatra, and for playing vampire princess Nyssa Damaskinos in Blade II.
Varela began her career with minor film roles, and her visibility increased when she was cast as Pola Santa Maria in Chilean soap opera Tic Tac, back in 1999. She has appeared in several TV series, including Human Target and Agents of SHIELD (above). She also had a recurring role on the 2012 reboot of Dallas.
Swedish actor Jens Hulten plays Xi. As with Shaman, we know very little about how Xi factors into the film. Hulten is known for his appearances on a variety of Swedish television series, including Graven and Wallander. He also appeared in James Bond film Skyfall in 2012, playing one of Raoul Silva’s thugs. More recently, he showed up in 2015’s action standout Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, and 95 (above), a Finnish film about the 1995 Ice Hockey World Championship Games.
Johannes Haukur Johannesson
Icelandic actor Johannes Haukur Johannesson plays Tau. We can tell from the film’s original trailer that Tau plays a significant role in Keda’s life prior to his life-changing ordeal. Johannesson has appeared in films like Atomic Blonde and Noah. He’s best known for his role in the sixth season of HBO series Game Of Thrones, where he played Lem, a member of the Brotherhood Without Banners. (Alas, poor Lem is one of many casualties in Game of Thrones.) He will appear in Netflix’s upcoming series The Innocents.
Norwegian actress and model Natassia Malthe plays Rho. Much like the other characters, Rho is currently a mystery. Malthe, on the other hand, is very well known. She’s appeared in a wide array of genre movies and TV, from guest roles on Andromeda and the Dead Zone TV series to significant roles in Lake Placid, Elektra and This Means War, to leading roles in multiple Bloodrayne films.
Alpha hits theatres on August 17, 2018.