AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Synopsis and Casting News

The highly-anticipated S.H.I.E.L.D. television series pilot by Joss Whedon may have a new identity.

Some new information was recently found on ABC's website for advertisers, including a different series title, Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, and a detailed description.  As Entertainment Weekly points out however, an ABC network representative claims the title is not official and may change again, but it's possible this was done to distinguish the series more from the acclaimed FX police series The Shield.  One thing is certain, though -- Everyone will probably refer to it as just Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. or simply S.H.I.E.L.D., because no one will care that it's a Marvel branded property except Disney/Marvel.

The detailed synopsis for the series:

Joss Whedon (MARVEL’S THE AVENGERS, Buffy the Vampire Slayer) shows us not all heroes are super with MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D.

Fresh from his role in the summer’s box office smash, MARVEL’S THE AVENGERS, Agent Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) returns to the worldwide law enforcement organization S.H.I.E.L.D. He puts together a small, highly trained, team of Agents to tackle the cases that haven’t been classified yet, the new, the strange and the unknown. That team consists of straight arrow Agent Grant Ward (Brett Dalton), an expert in combat and espionage; pilot and martial artist Agent Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen); and brilliant if socially awkward scientists Agent Leo Fitz (Iain De Caestecker) and Agent Jemma Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge). They’ll be joined by civilian new recruit and computer hacker Skye (Chloe Bennet).

Prepare for an epic adventure that showcases the hope and wonder of the human spirit. This is a world of Super Heroes, aliens and the unusual – of action, spectacle and world spanning stories. The show will speak to the human condition through the lens of our very human, non-powered S.H.I.E.L.D agents – that together we are greater than we are apart, and that we can make a difference in the world.

Executive Produced and co-written by Joss Whedon, Jed Whedon & Maurissa Tancharoen (Dollhouse, Dr.Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog), Jeffrey Bell (Angel, Alias) and Jeph Loeb (Smallville, Lost, Heroes) comes Marvel’s first live-action TV series, MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D.

In other news, TVLine reported on Friday that actor J. August Richards, who formerly played Charles Gunn on Whedon's series Angel, has signed on for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. in an undisclosed role.

The pilot already wrapped filming in February, but is highly likely to be added to ABC's fall schedule.  Given the secrecy around Richards' role, it's possible that he could be a younger version of Samuel L. Jackson's character Nick Fury that appears in flashbacks or he could be his son, Nick Fury, Jr., who was recently introduced past year in Marvel Comics' Battle Scars #1.  Richards is roughly 25 years younger than Jackson, so it seems unlikely he would assume Jackson's role in a modern-day setting.