Animal Kingdom (TV series)
|Based on||Animal Kingdom|
by David Michôd
|Developed by||Jonathan Lisco|
|Theme music composer||Atticus Ross & Claudia Sarne|
|Composer(s)||Alexis & Sam|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||4|
|No. of episodes||39 (list of episodes)|
|Production location(s)||Oceanside, California|
Los Angeles, California
|Running time||47-54 minutes|
|Distributor||Warner Bros. Television Distribution|
|Original release||June 14, 2016 –|
Animal Kingdom is an American drama television series developed by Jonathan Lisco. It is based on the 2010 Australian film of the same name by David Michôd, who is executive producer for the series, alongside Liz Watts who also produced the movie. The series follows a 17-year-old boy, who, after the death of his mother, moves in with his estranged relatives, the Codys, a criminal family clan governed by matriarch Smurf. Ellen Barkin portrays the leading role of Janine "Smurf" Cody, played by Jacki Weaver in the 2010 film.
Animal Kingdom debuted on TNT on June 14, 2016, and was renewed for a second season on July 6, 2016, of thirteen episodes that premiered on May 30, 2017. On July 27, 2017, TNT renewed the series for a third season that debuted on May 29, 2018. On July 2, 2018, TNT renewed the series for a fourth season that premiered on May 28, 2019.
Cast and characters
- Ellen Barkin as Janine "Smurf" Cody, the tough matriarch of the family and J's estranged grandmother. Smurf is protective of her family and presents a borderline-incestuous love towards them. All of her sons have different fathers.
- Leila George as a young Janine "Smurf" Cody in 1977.
- Scott Speedman as Barry "Baz" Blackwell, Smurf's adopted son and leader in the Codys' robberies. Despite his quiet demeanor, he is manipulative and self-centered. (seasons 1–3)
- Shawn Hatosy as Andrew "Pope" Cody, the oldest Cody son, who is mentally disturbed and considers suicide. He reappears after serving three years in Folsom State Prison and had an obsessive infatuation with Baz's girlfriend Catherine. He is attached to Catherine's daughter, Lena, and takes it upon himself to give her a good life.
- Ben Robson as Craig Cody, the middle Cody son, who has a predilection for drugs and extremely risky activities.
- Jake Weary as Deran Cody, the youngest Cody son, a former competitive surfer who is gay and opens a bar as a legitimate side business.
- Finn Cole as Joshua "J" Cody, Smurf's grandson who moves in with her and his uncles following the death of his mother, Julia, who was Pope's twin sister. He is the only one who will challenge Smurf and wants to take power over her and her life.
- Daniella Alonso as Catherine Blackwell (season 1), Baz's girlfriend, and mother to their daughter, Lena.
- Molly Gordon as Nicky Belmont, J's girlfriend who later hooks up with Craig. She leaves town and goes back to live with her parents after finding the Cody lifestyle to be too rough.
- Carolina Guerra as Lucy (recurring, season 1; main, seasons 2–3), Baz's mistress from Mexico with whom he rekindles a romance after Catherine's disappearance. She is the head of a Mexican gang with her brother.
- Sohvi Rodriguez as Mia Benitez (recurring, season 3; main, season 4), a tough young woman raised in a gang who is very rough around the edges. She later grows closer to the Cody family and has a mysterious and dangerous night-life.
- Aamya Deva Keroles as Lena Blackwell, Baz and Catherine's daughter. (seasons 1–3)
- Spencer Treat Clark as Adrian Dolan, Deran's on-again/off-again boyfriend who runs a surfboard shop and is a competitive surfer.
- Christina Ochoa as Renn Randall, Craig's drug dealer and on-again/off-again girlfriend.
- C. Thomas Howell as Paul Belmont (season 1; guest, season 3), a United States Navy Lieutenant Commander at Camp Pendleton, and Nicky's father.
- Nicki Micheaux as Det. Sandra Yates (season 1), a detective trying to bring the Cody family to justice for their crimes.
- Dorian Missick as Patrick (seasons 1–2), a tough cop with a sweet spot for Catherine.
- Ellen Wroe as Alexa Anderson (season 1), J and Nicky's teacher, who works undercover with Detective Yates to try to take down the Codys.
- Michael Bowen as Vin (season 1), a man previously incarcerated with Pope.
- Jack Conley as Jake (seasons 1–2), a former member of Smurf's gang, and Craig's father.
- Alex Meraz as Javier "Javi" Cano (season 2), The son of a man Smurf ran jobs with. He is the head of a dangerous gang that Smurf worked with while her sons were too young to commit crimes.
- Jennifer Landon as Amy (season 2; guest, season 3), an employee at a megachurch whom Pope meets and briefly dates.
- Tembi Locke as Monica (season 2), a smart, low-key woman who is the technical brains of a criminal operation that the Codys rely on to fence their stolen goods.
- Laura San Giacomo as Morgan Wilson (season 2–3), Smurf's lawyer.
- Andy Favreau as Mark Liston (season 2), a powerful businessman who the Codys encounter at the church, and who has a fling with Deran.
- Gil Birmingham as Pearce (season 2–3), an unflappable law enforcement officer with a dry sense of humor and more than 20 years on the job.
- Dichen Lachman as Frankie (season 3–present), Billy's edgy, free-spirited and dangerous younger girlfriend.
- Damon Williams as Clark Lincoln (season 3), a former motorcross rider and X Games participant who now works as an ER nurse and starts a fling with Deran.
- Denis Leary as Billy (season 3), Deran's drifter father who Smurf kicked out years ago.
- Emily Deschanel as Angela (season 4), a recovering drug addict and Julia's best friend.
- Kelli Berglund as Olivia (season 4), a charming college student who shares a class with J.
- Jon Beavers as Jake (season 4), a friendly member of a crew and Smurf’s boyfriend from 1977 that commits armed robberies in town.
- Grant Harvey as Colin (season 4), a violent ex-vet member of Smurf’s crew from 1977 that commits armed robberies in town.
- David DeSantos as Dennis Livengood (season 4), a DEA agent who Adrian made a deal with following his arrest for drug smuggling.
- Vinny Chhibber as Rahul (season 4), a haughty billionaire.
- Eddie Ramos as Tupi (season 4), a dangerous, money-hungry ex of Mia's.
|First aired||Last aired|
|1||10||June 14, 2016||August 9, 2016|
|2||13||May 30, 2017||August 29, 2017|
|3||13||May 29, 2018||August 21, 2018|
|4||TBA||May 28, 2019||TBA|
TNT ordered the pilot of Animal Kingdom in May 2015, with Barkin and Speedman the first to be cast in July 2015 as matriarch Smurf and her adopted son Baz, respectively. In August, Cole and Weary were added as J and Deran, with Hatosy and Robson soon cast as the remaining Cody brothers Pope and Craig. Alonso was later announced as Baz's wife Catherine, and Molly Gordon as J's girlfriend Nicky.
The project was picked up to series with a 10-episode order in December 2015. The show debuted on June 14, 2016, and on July 6, 2016 TNT renewed it for a 13-episode second season. On July 27 TNT announced it would be renewing Animal Kingdom for a third season, which premiered on May 29, 2018. The season three premiere was aired after a game on TNT beginning 12:30/11:30 central the day before the premiere. On July 2, 2018, TNT renewed the series for a fourth season. Production on the fourth season began on January 10, 2019. The fourth season is set to premiere on May 28, 2019.
The first season of Animal Kingdom has received positive reviews. On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the season has an approval rating of 74% based on 31 reviews. The consensus is: "Bolstered by Ellen Barkin's acting prowess, Animal Kingdom is a darkly intriguing, although occasionally predictable, twisted family drama." On Metacritic, the series has a score of 65 out of 100, based on 27 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".
|Season||Timeslot (ET)||Episodes||First aired||Last aired||Avg. viewers
|1||Tuesday 9:00 pm||10||June 14, 2016||1.31||August 9, 2016||1.51||1.27||0.43|
|2||13||May 30, 2017||1.19||August 29, 2017||1.41||1.17||0.38|
|3||13||May 29, 2018||1.61||August 21, 2018||1.37||1.31||0.39|
|4||TBA||May 28, 2019||1.35||TBA||TBD||TBD||TBD|
|Year||Award||Category||Recipient(s) and nominee(s)||Result||Ref.|
|2018||Saturn Awards||Best Action-Thriller Television Series||Animal Kingdom||Nominated|||
In Canada the show is broadcast on Bravo (Canada), and its first three seasons are available on Netflix. In the UK, it is available on Amazon Prime, In Australia, it is available on Netflix with new episodes added weekly. 
The first season was released in DVD and Blu-ray formats on April 28, 2017. Each set contains behind-the-scenes featurettes and deleted scenes. The home media is distributed by Warner Bros. Home Entertainment.
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