Pantheon - What We Know So Far

Human consciousness, technology, and the consequences of a world unprepared for its continual development are at the forefront of AMC's sci-fi animated series "Pantheon." The project, which premiered on September 1, 2022, is based on the works of Ken Liu; the author's short stories delve into uploaded consciousness as well as the human experience surrounding this concept. "Pantheon" hails from Craig Silverstein. Prior to this project, Silverstein was creator and showrunner of "Turn: Washington's Spies" (via The Hollywood Reporter).

"Pantheon" moves the network into new territory with its approach to filming. The animated project is taking its cues from graphic realism, while also not abandoning the 2D process most audiences know all too well (via Deadline). Sarah Barnett — president of AMC Networks Entertainment Group and AMC Studios — spoke about their ambitions for the process, saying that "we're looking to push other boundaries here too, in making an animated drama that aims to be every bit as moving, immersive and visceral as any premium, live-action scripted series" (via AMC Networks).

Who is in the cast of Pantheon?

Katie Chang heads up the cast as Maddie — a young woman who finds solace in a surprising online presence. Daniel Dae Kim voices Maddie's father David, who has recently passed, while Rosemarie DeWitt voices Maddie's mother Ellen, who tries to reconnect with Maddie while dealing with her own grief. Meanwhile, Paul Dano's character Caspian is a teenager whose own experience with technology could help Maddie reach the truth. Throughout the series, Caspian also finds problems with his own parents, who are portrayed by Aaron Eckhart and "Orange is the New Black" star Taylor Schilling (via Deadline).

The rest of the cast is full of notable names — a promising sign for the ambitious project. Others who have joined the project so far include Ron Livingston, Chris Diamantopoulos, Raza Jaffrey, and Scoot McNairy. Viewers can also expect Anika Noni Rose, Grey Griffin, SungWon Cho, Kevin Durand, Samuel Roukin, and Krystina Alabado to lend their voices to "Pantheon" (via /Film). On top of that, the cast also includes William Hurt, Corey Stoll, Lara Pulver, and Maude Apatow. Both Stoll and Pulver are taking on multiple characters throughout the series. No word as of yet about what characters and how many they'll take on during the first season (via The Wrap).

What is the plot of Pantheon?

The first season of the AMC show will be based on a series of short stories from Ken Liu about "Uploaded Intelligence." "Pantheon" zeroes in on the life of a young woman named Maddie. The teen — who is experiencing bullying — begins to connect with an online stranger. In the process, she learns that the man is her late father. His recent loss plays heavily into the story as Maddie learns about the reasons behind this sudden re-appearance. Along the way, characters discover that there may be more to reckon with, as Maddie's father poses more questions than answers (via AMC Networks).

Technology is at the forefront as Liu's original story, as the series explores a world in which Uploaded Intelligence may be the next step for humanity. Also known as UI, the process involves a person's consciousness being uploaded to the story's digital "Cloud," an idea many are probably familiar with. For "Pantheon," the aftermath of one man's ascension is just the beginning, and the upcoming animated series will follow the unraveling of an international conspiracy that could destroy the world.

Is there a trailer for Pantheon?

The first trailer for "Pantheon" dropped on August 17, surprisingly only a few weeks before its premiere on September 1. The trailer is rather gloomy, with Stephen Holstrom (William Hurt) saying it's not a breakthrough when AIs can think but when they feel. It sets the tone for the series and how dangerous this show's artificial intelligence is, as well as uploaded intelligence. We get a glimpse into the goriness of uploading human brains to the internet, watching a patient suffer as their intelligence is seemingly sucked out of their skull. 

The trailer also shows Maddie (Katie Chang) and her quest for the truth about her father's death, while Caspian becomes suspicious of everyone and everything around him. Additionally, the teaser ponders the question if one can be human without a body, as this line between uploaded intelligence and an actual person gets thinner and thinner. There are several superhuman beings who can fly and have various other powers who seem like a threat to humans, but how they fit into the AI storyline remains to be seen.