In The New Black Taylor Schilling as Piper, an engaged Brooklyn resident whose decade-ago relationship with a drug runner in college results in her arrest and multiyear detention in a federal penitentiary. Lacking any real-world experience to deal with her harsh new environment, Piper immerses herself in women’s prison culture and finds acceptance, tears, laughter and love amid an outspoken group of inmates.
merican Pie‘s Natasha Lyonne — who guest starred in the series finaleof Kohan’s Showtime dramedy — has booked a recurring role as Nicky, a lesbian hipster and one of Piper’s cellmates.
Michael Harney, who played slacker detective Mitch Ouellette on the final season of Weeds, will be a series regular and play Mr. Butorsky, Piper’s persnickety counselor at the prison.
Lin Tucci (Showgirls) will also recur as Anita DeMarco, an outspoken Jersey-Italian inmate who helps show Piper the ropes.
Lyonne joins her former American Pie co-star Jason Biggs, who co-stars as Piper’s fiancé Larry in the 13-episode hourlong drama with comedic elements. That ’70s Show alum Laura Prepon will play Alex’s ex-girlfriend and a former drug runner — and the woman responsible for landing Piper behind bars.
The series from Lionsgate TV is based on the memoir by Piper Kerman about her year in a women’s prison. Kohan, whose Weeds recently wrapped its eight-season run on Showtime, will write and executive produce Orange Is the New Black.
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