Dennis Quaid is no longer starring in the Peacock miniseries on Tiger King subject Joe Exotic. Quaid was originally set to star as the reality television show producer Rick Kirkham, but he had to pull out of the project due to scheduling conflicts, TVLine reports. Instead, the part will be played by William Fichtner, who recently starred in CBS' Mom sitcom with Allison Janney.
NBCUniversal's Peacock series on Exotic will star John Cameron Mitchell (Shrill) as Joseph Maldonado-Passage, the zoo owner who is now in prison for animal abuse and hiring a hitman to kill his rival, Carole Baskin. Saturday Night Live star Kate McKinnon was cast as Baskin, who runs Big Cat Rescue in Tampa. The series will focus on Baskin's efforts to expose Exotic's zoo, while he tries to undermine her efforts by digging up dirt on her. As seen in Netflix's Tiger King documentary, Kirkham decided to follow Exotic for an ill-fated reality television series. Quaid was originally cast in the part in June.
Joe Exotic also stars Dean Winters as Exotic's former partner and now enemy, Jeff Lowe. Brian Van Holt was cast as John Reinke, while Nat Wolff will play Exotic's first husband, Travis Maldonado, and Sam Keeley plays Exotic's second husband, John Finlay. The script will be based on journalist Robert Moor's Wonderly podcast, Joe Exotic: Tiger King. NBCUniversal originally planned to air the show on NBC and USA Network but decided to move the project to the Peacock streaming platform exclusively.
Although the hysteria surrounding Netflix's Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem, and Madness documentary series has subsided since it was released on Netflix in March 2020, Hollywood is hoping that enough interest remains for dramatizations of the story. In addition to the Peacock project, Amazon is developing a limited series starring Nicolas Cage. This project will be produced by Amazon Studios, CBS Television Studios, and Imagine Television. It is based on Leif Reigstad's Texas Monthly article "Joe Exotic: A Dark Journey Into the World of a Man Gone Wild."
Back in April 2020, Deadline reported that Rob Lowe was in talks with American Horror Story co-creator Ryan Murphy about starring as Exotic in a project for Netflix. At the time, sources said the project was in the very preliminary stages, but Lowe teased interest by announcing the project on Instagram. He even shared a photo of himself dressed as Exotic. However, there have been no further updates on the project since it was first announced.