The Winter King cast brings together a diverse and exciting ensemble to bring the first in the trilogy of Bernard Cornwell’s King Arthur novels to life. The show looks to be the latest medieval television hit with MGM+ releasing the series with the first season consisting of 10 episodes which will debut on August 20, 2023. The Winter King is based on The Warlord Chronicles by The Last Kingdom author Bernard Cornwell. Though a historical fiction, The Winter King cast will bring to life some legendary characters who audiences are certainly familiar with.
There have been many King Arthur movies over the years with each project looking to tell a new version of the classic hero. The Winter King begins with the first book in Cornwell’s trilogy (also titled The Winter King) and follows the young Arthur who has been banished from the kingdom as a warlord and seeks to protect the throne. The Winter King on MGM+ will also look at iconic characters from the Arthurian legends like Lancelot and Merlin, presented in unique ways that audiences may not have expected. It will be thrilling to see how The Winter King cast portrays these pseudo-mythological figures, with everyone from Iain De Caestecker’s Arthur to Nathaniel Martello-White’s Merlin feeling exceptionally well-placed for the Arthurian world of Bernard Cornwell’s novels.
Iain De Caestecker As Arthur Pendragon
Iain De Caestecker stars as Arthur Pendragon in The Winter King cast. In the Bernard Cornwell version of the legend that The Winter King adapts, Arthur is the illegitimate son of King Uther who has been exiled from Britain as a warlord. This version of King Arthur is a cunning warrior and an intelligent politician, a far cry from some of the mroe hot-headed heroes seen in shows like Merlin. Iain De Caestecker is best known for playing Leo Fitz in Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD. He has also starred in the World War II horror movie Overlord, the rom-com Not Another Happy Ending with Karen Gillan, and Ryan Gosling’s directorial debut, Lost River.
Jordan Alexandra As Guinevere
Jordan Alexandra’s The Winter King cast character is Guinevere. Guinevere is King Arthur’s wife, and in the version of the legend as told by The Winter King, Guinevere holds more ambition than her husband does when it comes to gaining power. She can be uncaring towards others in her quest to rise the social ladder, but she has great intelligence. In The Winter King show, it’s possible she could be a similar character to Cersei Lannister on Game of Thrones. The Winter King marks the first major starring role for Jordan Alexandra, who previously had small roles in movies like Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and television shows like Bridgerton and Brave New World.
Stuart Campbell As Derfel Cadarn
Stuart Campbell joins The Winter King cast as Derfel Cadarn. Though the books are certainly about Arthur and his journeys, Derfel is the actual narrator of the story. Like Arthur, he was an orphan of Merlin who became one of Arthur’s top captains in The Winter King’s version of King Arthur’s Britain. Derfel recognizes Arthur is a flawed man, but he believes he can save the realm. Stuart Campbell is a UK actor who has appeared in Outlander and London Kills prior to joining the cast of The Winter King. Most recently, he starred as Bill Fraser in SAS Rogue Heroes.
Ellie James As Nimueh
Ellie James plays Nimueh in The Winter King cast. A character in The Winter King who doesn’t appear in other versions of King Arthur’s story, Nimueh is a priestess saved by Merlin because she has the ability to see the Gods. Merlin guides her in her journey to becoming a druid though she battles with her connection to Derfel. Before joining The Winter King cast, Ellie James built an impressive career as an up-and-coming actor in just several years with roles in the Emmy-winning series I May Destroy You and the Oscar-nominated movie The Lost Daughter.
Eddie Marsan As Uther
Eddie Marsan joins The Winter King cast as Uther. Uther holds the position as High King of all Dumnonia. He is a tough but respected ruler given his proven valor on the battlefield over the years Yet he has a difficult relationship with his illegitimate son Arthur and is not pleased to see him reemerge. Uther is played by Eddie Marsan, an English character actor of incredible versatility. He joined Edgar Wright’s Three Cornetto Trilogy in The World’s End and also starred as the villain in Deadpool 2. He has appeared in several Guy Ritchie movies including The Gentlemen, Wrath of Man, and Operation Fortune, and is expected to reprise his role as Inspector Lestrade in the third Sherlock Holmes movie as well.
Nathaniel Martello-White As Merlin
Nathaniel Martello-White’s The Winter King character is Merlin. The most well-known figure in the legend of King Arthur besides Arthur himself (and perhaps Lancelot), the wizard Merlin in The Winter King is a revered member of the druids and the man who raised the orphaned Arthur. Merlin is a wise and bold figure who is one of the few people Uther holds no control over as Merlin answers only to the Gods. Nathaniel Martello-White is an English writer, director, and actor who has appeared in Steve McQueen’s Small Axe, Moonwalkers, and Misfits prior to playing the most famous wizard of all time in the cast of The Winter King.
Daniel Ings As Owain
Daniel Ings plays Owain in The Winter King cast. Owain is a warrior of Dumnonia who has severed Uther for years as his most experienced champion yet one who does not always display the valor of a knight. Daniel Ings is an English actor who has appeared in a number of acclaimed and popular shows before joining the cast of The Winter King. He starred in Netflix’s Love Sick, appeared in the “Smithereens” episode of Black Mirror, and played Mike Parker in The Crown. He will also appear in Guy Ritchies’ The Gentlemen series.
Andrew Gower As Sansum
Andrew Gower’s The Winter King cast character is Sansum, a religious figure in the version of the King Arthur story as told by Bernard Cornwell in The Winter King book. Sansum is described (via Deadline) as “Bishop Bedwin’s fanatical novice, who holds great sway over the Christians of Britain.” This complex part is played in The Winter King by Andrew Gower — an English actor whose standout television credits include playing Prince Charles in Outlander and playing Ezra Spurnrose in Carnival Row.
Valene Kane As Morgan
Valene Kane joins The Winter King cast as Morgan. Morgan is Arthur’s half-sister, and also an illegitimate child of King Uther. She is not afraid to speak her mind and is a student of Merlin and his druid ways. Morgan is being brough to the screen in The Winter King cast by Valene Kane, a British-Irish actor who had a brief but important role in the Star Wars universe as Lyra Erso in the opening scene of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. She also appears in The Fall and Gangs of London.
Simon Merrells As Gundleus
Simon Merrells play Gundleus in The Winter King cast. Gundleus is one of the villains of the story as king of rival kingdom Siluria. He is a brutal and ruthless ruler who does not hesitate to destroy anything in his path. Merrells is no stranger to historical fiction shows having appeared in Knightfall and Spartacus: Blood and Sand. He also appeared in the cast of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power season 1.