“I’m a monster!” We’ve heard Tony Hale scream these words as Buster Bluth, the hook-handed brother at the center of iconic TV comedy Arrested Development. And now, on his new project, that catchphrase will be half right. Hale will be starring in Hulu’s adaptation of popular YA book series The Mysterious Benedict Society — in a dual role.
The original trilogy of novels, by author Trenton Lee Stewart, follows a group of four gifted and precocious orphans who start a mystery-solving “society” named after Mr. Benedict, an eccentric, wealthy, and kind-hearted benefactor who gathers the children together and sends them on an undercover mission at an infamous boarding school called The Institute. Hale will play the title role of Mr. Benedict — alongside Mr. Benedict’s evil twin brother, Mr. Curtain, who serves as the series’ main antagonist, and plans on taking over the world, of course. Hale is a fiercely talented comedic performer, and it will be very exciting to see his range in this dual role — and if Mr. Curtain gets something like his A Series of Unfortunate Events mustache, I’ll be happy.
The Hulu adaptation is written by Matt Manfredi and Phil Hay (The Invitation) and headed by showrunners Todd Slavkin and Darren Swimmer (Shadowhunters). This quartet executive produces the show alongside Jamie Tarses (The Mayor) and Karen Kehela Sherwood (I Like You Just the Way I Am). No other cast members have been announced yet, but if Hulu can find the right group of kids, they just might find themselves a Stranger Things on their hands.
We’ll keep you updated on The Mysterious Benedict Society as we learn more. For more from Hale, check out our Sundance interview with him about Nine Days, and our Forky Asks a Question interview with him.