Disney+ has announced that a fan-favorite character from the National Treasure film franchise will be returning to the streaming service’s upcoming original series of the same name. Brush up on the history of daylight savings because Riley Poole will be making a return as a guest star, with Justin Bartha reprising his role as the beloved character.
In both the original National Treasure from 2004 and 2007’s National Treasure: Book of Secrets, Bartha played the character Riley Poole, a computer hacker who is as much of a genius as he is sarcastic and is also the best friend of the films’ protagonist, Nic Cage‘s Ben Gates. While very smart and providing some breakthrough revelations between the two films, Riley is most fondly remembered as the lovable comic relief, whose comedic timing and physical humor provided a break in the tension as he and the team of Gates and Diane Kruger‘s Abigail Chase traveled the world on their quest to discover some of history’s greatest lost treasures.
In addition to his role as Poole in both National Treasure films, Bartha also starred in another popular franchise, Todd Phillips’ The Hangover. Most recently, Bartha has co-starred in the critically acclaimed television dramas Godfather of Harlem and The Good Fight. Other acting credits include a role on Netflix‘s Sweet Girl opposite Jason Momoa, Driven alongside Jason Sudeikis, Elizabeth Wood’s White Girl, Holy Rollers with Jesse Eisenberg, and Todd Solondz’s Dark Horse. He also has several stage credits, including the Tony Award-nominated revival of “Lend Me A Tenor” opposite Tony Shaloub, Eisenberg’s Asunción, Robert Askins’ Permission, and Neil Simon’s Sunshine Boys.
Bartha is the latest addition to the expansive cast for the Disney+ series, joining series lead Lisette Alexis who will play the character Jess, who is described by their official description as a “brilliant and resourceful DREAMer who embarks on the adventure of a lifetime to uncover the truth about her family’s mysterious past and save a lost Pan-American treasure.” The rest of the cast includes the likes of multiple award-winning actress Catherine Zeta-Jones (Ocean’s Twelve), who Bartha will be reuniting with after the pair starred in the 2009 film The Rebound, as well as Zuri Reed (Flatbush Misdemeanors), Jordan Rodrigues (Lady Bird), Antonio Cipriano (Jagged Little Pill on Broadway), Jake Austin Walker (Rectify), and Lyndon Smith (Parenthood).
The new series comes from Marianne and Cormac Wibberley who have written the pilot. National Treasure is being directed by Mira Nair, with Rick Muirragui serving as a writer on the series. Marianne and Cormac Wibberley, Nair, and Muirragui will also serve as executive producers on the project alongside original franchise director Jon Turteltaub as well as Jerry Bruckheimer, Jonathan Littman, and KristieAnne Reed.
The National Treasure Disney+ series is currently in production and does not yet have a release date or release window currently announced.