Aussie actor cast in Killing Jesus

Dan Mor is in Morocco for six weeks playing an enforcer to King Herod in Killing Jesus, a four-hour miniseries that stars Kelsey Grammer, Stephen Moyer, Rufus Sewell and John Rhys Davies.

The Scott Free production for the National Geographic Channel is based on the book Killing Jesus: A History by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard, adapted by Walon Green.

Grammer (Frasier, Boss) portrays Herod, the Roman King of Judea, who attempted to kill Jesus at his birth.

True Blood’s Moyer is Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor who ordered Jesus’ crucifixion, Sewell is Caiaphas, the high priest and conspirator in Jesus’ death.

Rhys Davies is Annas, another high priest who first questioned Jesus and his teachings, and Entourage’s Emmanuelle Chriqui is Herodia, ex-wife of Herod II.  Haaz Sleiman (Nurse Jackie, Covert Affairs) portrays the title character.

Mor is cast as Sillaeus, first seen as a young military adviser and enforcer for Herod who is ordered to slaughter male babies in hopes of putting an early end to the prophesy.

“Later, thanks to incredible make-up, I age 20 years as the adviser and enforcer of the young Tetrach Antipas ( Eoin Macken). including beheading John The Baptist,” he tells IF via email from Ouarzazate, where Gladiator, Kingdom of Heaven and Game of Thrones were filmed.

His Sydney-based agent Gina Stoj arranged for him to audition and he tried out for three different parts before being cast in a role he describes as “physically demanding and emotionally confronting, especially as I'm about to become a father very soon.”

In Australia the Israeli-born actor’s credits include the sci-fi adventure telemovie Arrowhead, Cedar Boys, Screentime’s Underbelly: The Golden Mile and Fat Tony & Co.

“NatGeo is very serious about the authenticity of the story and therefore so much detail has been put into amazingly rich in texture, colours, and costumes," he said. “The sets are stunning and big and the exterior locations are breathtaking.

“The director Chris Menaul is very pedantic and really knows what he wants and at the same time he is warm and giving.”

Killing Jesus marks the third collaboration for NGC, Scott Free Productions and O’Reilly following Killing Lincoln and the Emmy-nominated Killing Kennedy.