Tom Hiddleston Set to Star in Apple TV+ Drama 'The White Darkness'

Tom Hiddleston in "The Essex Serpent" (Photo: Apple TV+)

The forthcoming Apple TV+ period drama The Essex Serpent will arrive on screens this May, but its star Tom Hiddleston appears to have already signed on for another major project with the streamer.

Hiddleston is probably best known for his role as the trickster god Loki in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but the actor has appeared in projects as diverse as Guillermo del Toro's Gothic horror feature Crimson Peak, the Emmy-winning John Le Carr drama The Night Managerand Shakespeare anthology The Hollow Crown. But his next role will have a more true-to-life flavor, as the actor is set to star in The White Darknessa limited series based on the nonfiction book of the same name by author David Grann. (If you feel like you've heard that name before, it's because he also wrote the recent bestseller Killers of the Flower Moon, which Apple is also adapting into a feature film. Time is truly a flat circle!) 

The White Darkness will follow the dramatic life of Henry Worsley, a former British Army officer, devoted husband, and father, who was also an avid adventure-seeker and explorer. He was part of the successful 2009 expedition in which a group of descendants from the original Ernest Shackleton crew retraced his steps in the Antarctic.

Sadly, Worsley passed away in 2016 attempting to complete the first solo and unaided crossing of Antarctica—the same mission on which Shakelton himself died—after coming within 30 miles of reaching the South Pole. According to Apple, the series will explore a " spellbinding story of courage, love, family and the extremes of human capacity."

A co-production between Universal Content Productions and Apple Studios, The White Darkness comes from showrunners Soo Hugh and Mark Heyman (Black Swan). It will be the second series for Hugh at Apple, whose critically acclaimed adaptation of Min Lee Jin's novel Pachinko is currently streaming on the service. Hiddleston will also serve as an executive producer. 

No other casting news was announced, and there's no word yet on when we might be able to see The White Darkness for ourselves. But given Hiddleston's busy schedule (a second season of the Disney+ series Loki is also in the works) and the assumed scope of this project, mid-to-late 2023 seems like the most optimistic bet. 

But if you need to fill the Hiddleston-shaped hole in your life before then, his new drama The Essex Serpent drops on May 13 on Apple TV+. 

Lacy Baugher

Lacy's love of British TV is embarrassingly extensive, but primarily centers around evangelizing all things Doctor Who, and watching as many period dramas as possible.

Digital media type by day, she also has a fairly useless degree in British medieval literature, and dearly loves to talk about dream poetry, liminality and the medieval religious vision. (Sadly, that opportunity presents itself very infrequently.) York apologist, Ninth Doctor enthusiast and unabashed Ravenclaw. Say hi on Twitter at @LacyMB