Chiwetel Ejiofor to Play Title Alien in Paramount+'s Man Who Fell to Earth

Chiwetel Ejiofor The Man Who Fell to Earth

Crank up the Bowie: Oscar nominee Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years a Slave) has signed on to star in Paramount+’s series adaptation of The Man Who Fell to Earth.

The sci-fi series, first ordered by Paramount+ (currently known as CBS All Access) back in August 2019, centers on an alien (Ejiofor) “who arrives on Earth at a turning point in human evolution and must confront his own past to determine our future,” per the official description. It’s based on the Walter Tevis novel of the same name, which inspired a 1976 film starring glam rocker David Bowie in the title role.

“Chiwetel Ejiofor’s stage and film career are staggering in their bravery, commitment and quality,” co-showrunners and executive producers Alex Kurtzman and Jenny Lumet (Star Trek: Discovery, Clarice) said in a statement. “He’s everything we could imagine and a million things we can’t. We couldn’t be more thrilled.”

Ejiofor is primarily known for his film work, particularly for playing kidnapped and enslaved Black man Solomon Northup in the 2013 film 12 Years a Slave, which earned him an Oscar nomination for Best Actor. His other major film roles include Doctor Strange, The Martian and 2012. But he has also appeared on the small screen in a number of British crime dramas like Trust, Dancing on the Edge and The Shadow Line.