Alden Ehrenreich fronts the cast of Peacock’s new series ‘Brave New World’ based on Aldous Huxley’s 1931 novel. Ehrenreich plays John the Savage, an untamed man who lives in the Savage Land, an apocalyptic wasteland that lies outside of New London, a utopian wonderland where the drug Soma and a ban on “monogamy, privacy, money, family, and history itself,” lead hedonistic citizens to constantly enjoy “instant gratification and ubiquitous sex.” John’s arrival in New London draws fascination, and fear, as some view him as a threat to this lavish lifestyle.
Ehrenreich had previously seemed to have found a Golden Ticket– the role of young Han Solo in Disney’s ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’. But poor reviews and overall ‘Star Wars’ fatigue led to that movie flaming out at the box office. Even so, it seems that Ehrenreich’s experience making ‘Solo’ helped inform his performance on ‘Brave New World’.
During a lengthy interview with Variety, Ehrenreich compared his take on John the Savage to the original version from the book, and he managed to make a connection to ‘Solo’ along the way.
“In the book John has, from Shakespeare, this romantic and large sense of what life should be and that it’s very much about love and feelings and emotional things and depth. And that looks different in the series — maybe it’s more of an American sense of romanticism — but it’s still the same plight and the same cause, which is this sense that life should be more and people should be giving themselves to feelings. For me that was really exciting, not entirely unlike ‘Solo’ where you’re the character in the midst of this enormous and incredibly dominant and overbearing system and you have a feeling or a belief that you’re fighting to get across. I’ve always responded to characters like that.”
‘Brave New World’ also stars Jessica Brown Findlay as Lenina Crowne, and Harry Lloyd as Bernard Marx, two New Londoners who venture outside of their pampered existence to the Davage Land, where they quickly find themselves in mortal danger. They are rescued by John the Savage, who escorts them back to their home.
Demi Moore recurs as John’s mother, Linda. The cast also includes Kylie Bunbury, Hannah John-Kamen, Sen Mitsuji, Joseph Morgan, and Nina Sosanya.
The first season of ‘Brave New World’ is now streaming on Peacock.