Guillermo del Toro’s latest big screen effort, Pacific Rim, opens this weekend, but his small screen series continues to add to its cast. The FX series The Strain now counts Sean Astin (The Lord of the Rings Trilogy) among its members. Astin will play Jim Kent, the friend of CDC doctor Ephraim “Eph” Goodweather (Corey Stoll) and Dr. Nora Martinez (Mia Maestro), who works closely with Ephraim and winds up stumbling into an affair with him. Goodweather heads the CDC’s Canary Team and leads the New York-based investigation into a viral outbreak tied to vampirism. As THR reports, Kent is “a savvy and trustworthy guy who is an open political operative of the Canary Group, [and who] unknowingly betrays their friendship when he is coerced into releasing a cabinet out of quarantine that contains a potentially deadly virus.” The production is gearing up to film the pilot with strong signs that it will earn a series order.