From 2004 to 2007, the USA Network aired The 4400, from co-creators Rene Echevarria and Scott Peters, in which thousands of people previously reported missing suddenly appear back on Earth with no sign of aging and no memory of their absence, but with strange new abilities given to some.
This story of one grand return is making its grand return to television in The CW’s new reimagining of the intriguing sci-fi mystery series, which has since gained a cult following, and is remembered as one of the earliest gigs of Firefly cast member Summer Glau and two-time Academy Award-winner Mahershala Ali, to name a few. We shall see if The CW’s new 4400 cast is destined for such fame, but first we will take a look at where you might have seen them before they reappeared on this new show.
Joseph David-Jones (Jharrel Mateo)
Playing a social worker named Jharrel struggling to help members of the titular 4400 is Joseph David-Jones – previously known on The CW from joining the Arrow cast as Connor Hawke, after debuting as the Knightwatch agent on DC’s Legends of Tomorrow.
The Los Angeles native, whose first acting credit was the 2011 straight-to-video sex comedy, Barely Legal, also has experience with sci-fi from his supporting role in the 2016 Divergent sequel, Allegiant, held his own opposite Denzel Washington in Roman J. Israel, Esq., and also displayed his musical talents on CMT’s Nashville and in Kathryn Bigelow’s historical crime drama, Detroit, in 2017. David-Jones is currently filming a movie called Unc, which is expected to come out February 2022.
Ireon Roach (Keisha)
Landing her first gig as a TV series regular cast member is Ireon Roach (who plays Jharrel’s co-worker, Keisha) following her debut guest spot with the Chicago P.D. cast in 2016. The following year saw the release of her first feature-length film – the teen LGBTQ+ romance Princess Cyd – but she achieved her first starring role in a movie with the coming-of-age thriller, Knives and Skin, in 2019.
However, her most high-profile role to date (prior to appearing in the 4400 cast, of course) is in 2021’s Candyman for a brief (but easily identifiable) moment from director Nia DaCosta and producer Jordan Peele’s soft reboot, that takes place in a high school restroom.
Brittany Adebumola (Shanice)
Shanice is one of the many people out of time (specifically originating from 2005) whom Jharrel and Keisha are assigned to investigate, and she’s played on 4400 by Brittany Adebumola. The 23-year-old made her screen acting debut just last year with the controversial coming-of-age miniseries, Grand Army, on Netflix in the recurring role of Tamika Jones.
Later in 2021, audiences will also be able to see her in the seventh episode of the Paramount+ original crime drama, Guilty Party (starring Underworld cast lead Kate Beckinsale), which will be available to stream on Thursday, November 18.
Cory Jeacoma (Logan)
Playing Shanice’s husband and father to her daughter, Logan (who is shocked to see her return 16 years after her unexplainable disappearance), is Cory Jeacoma. The Broadway actor’s first screen acting credit was the teen comedy, Fan Girl – which originally first aired on Freeform in 2015 (when it was still called ABC Family) and was also one of the earliest acting gigs of Beanie Feldstein of Booksmart and Impeachment: American Crime Story cast fame.
Prior to being cast on 4400, Jeacoma landed his most high profile part at the time on the Starz original spin-off drama Power Book II: Ghost in the recurring role of Trace Weston.
T.L. Thompson (Andre)
Andre, a transgender doctor and member of the 4400 who first went missing in the 1920s, is played by real-life transgender actor T.L. Thompson, who is also relatively new to the profession, with only four other acting credits so far. After providing the voice of multiple roles on Adventures in New America (a bizarre, satirical, dramatized podcast series about alien vampire zombies) in 2018, Thompson made a screen acting debut the following year on an episode of These Thems, which is a web show that focuses on the lives of four people from the LGBTQ+ community in New York City.
In 2020, the actor appeared in one installment of another digital series called While We Breathe, which was created in response to the murder of George Floyd, and then starred on another web show in 2021 called The Hunted: NYCSS, which has much lighter, horror-comedy vibe to it.
Jaye Ladymore (Claudette)
Playing Claudette, a Black woman from the 1950s who seems to take a liking to the 21st Century, is Jaye Ladymore, who has been previously credited as Jennifer Latimore in all of her projects prior to joining the 4400 cast. She debuted on an episode of a more grounded social commentary, Showtime’s The Chi, in 2018 – the same year she made her film debut opposite Jamie Lee Curtis in An Acceptable Loss, and appeared amongst the Empire cast in the recurring role of Janice Jones.
In 2020, after landing a recurring role as an assistant state attorney on the Fox legal drama Proven Innocent the year before, Ladymore reprised the Chicago P.D. character she originated in 2018 (another ASA named Katherine Boyd), and appeared in the film Killing Eleanor alongside former Malcom in the Middle cast member Jane Kaczmarek.
Derrick A. King (Reverend Johnston)
The 1990s was the last the world saw of Reverend Johnston – a character previously assigned to Joseph David-Jones before later being recast by Derrick A. King, who (like many of his co-stars on the 4400 cast) first got noticed from a digital show called College Boyfriends – The Web-Series. He later made his feature film debut opposite Scream Queen Dee Wallace in the low budget 2018 horror flick, Ouija House.
However, King’s biggest role prior to the CW series might be as “Main Player” in the 2021 edition of the popular Madden NFL video game series. Speaking of sports, he will next appear on the basketball drama Baselines with Jarrett Ellis, who starred in the Tupac biopic All Eyez on Me as Snoop Dogg.
Khailah Johnson (Ladonna)
One of the few characters in the 4400, other than Brittany Adebumola’s Shanice, who has some familiarity with the 21st Century (having gone missing in 2015) is Ladonna – played by Khailah Johnson, who is making her screen acting debut on The CW series.
The New Jersey native actually just graduated in 2021 from Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Drama, where she notably played Little Red in the school’s production of Into the Woods, and earned the Helen Wayne Rauh award for excellence in musical theatre. Therefore, it may be safe to say that we can expect great things from the young actress during her tenure in the 4400 cast and beyond.
Autumn Best (Mildred)
Also appearing in her first major role on a television series is the young actress Autumn Best, who plays an intelligent teenager from the 1970s named Mildred. While 4400 will serve as an introduction to the talented newcomer for many audiences, she also has a notable online presence for her YouTube channel, on which the artist (born with a developmental disability called symbrachydactyly, which stunted the growth of most of the fingers on her left hand) has impressed her subscribers with ukulele covers of popular songs.
In the role of another 4400 member named Hayden, we have AMARR (née Amarr Merritt Wooten), who has been acting since he was only a 3-year-old child, starting out, mostly, with TV commercials before breaking into film with Step Up 2: The Streets in 2008. The now-20-year-old has the honor of calling himself a Disney Channel star (for his recurring role on Liv and Maddie), a Nickelodeon star (for his regular role on Knight Squad), and an ABC sitcom star (for his recurring role on American Housewife).
However, appearing opposite Romany Malco in Holiday Rush in 2019 made AMARR a Netflix star, which will continue with his recurring role on Colin in Black and White – a limited series about Colin Kaepernick narrated by the outspoken NFL star himself, who also co-created it with Ava Duvernay.
Wilder Yari (Jessica)
Playing Keisha’s romantic partner (and boss) on 4400 is Wilder Yari, who has been more commonly credited as Ariana (or Ari) Anderson previously. Yari would appear mostly in short films before landing a starring role in the low budget feature-length horror flick The Canyonlands in 2021, around the same time the actor was cast in a Season 2 episode of The L Word: Generation Q – a revival of the hit Showtime series.
Judging by shots of police officers wearing masks and conversations between people separated by clear plastic barriers in the promotional material, its seems like the new 4400 takes place not in an alternate 2021, but in our very own reality (if this reality also saw the shocking arrival of reluctant, time-traveling missing persons). I suppose that also means we should also expect some interesting social commentary in each episode when the new series – developed by Riverdale producer Ariana Jackson and Walker executive producer Anna Fricke – premieres on The CW, Monday, October 25, 2021.
Jason has been writing since he was able to pick up a washable marker, with which he wrote his debut illustrated children’s story, later transitioning to a short-lived comic book series and (very) amateur filmmaking before finally settling on pursuing a career in writing about movies in lieu of making them. Look for his name in just about any article related to Batman.