(from Discovery's press release, April 2013) It was announced today that Academy Award nominated actor Sam Shepard will be joining the cast of Discovery Channel's first-ever, scripted mini-series KLONDIKE (wt). Shepard will be playing the role of Father Judge. Shepard was nominated for an Academy Award for his role in Philip Kaufman's The Right Stuff. He is also a screenwriter, director and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright for his 1979 three-act play "Buried Alive." This year, Shepard will star in Jeff Nichols' film, "Mud", opposite Matthew McConaughey and Reese Witherspoon, as well as in "August: Osage County" opposite Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts and Abigail Breslin and Scott Cooper's "Out Of The Furnace" opposite Christian Bale and Zoe Saldana. Other notable film credits include "Baby Boom," "Steel Magnolias", "Defenseless" and "Thunderheart." His notable television films and miniseries have included Larry McMurtry's "Streets of Laredo,"" Lily Dale," "Purgatory," "Dash and Lilly" (which brought him both Golden Globe and Emmy nominations for his performance as writer Dashiell Hammett), "One Kill," "Wild Geese," and "Ruffian." The mini-series, previously announced last year, is based on Charlotte Gray's book Gold Diggers: Striking It Rich in the Klondike, and brings to life the tale about six strangers and their collective fight for survival and wealth in a small, frontier town in the remote Klondike. KLONDIKE is a co-production between Discovery, Entertainment One (eOne), and Nomadic Pictures, in association with Scott Free Productions. International distribution is handled by eOne Television. Paul Scheuring ("Prison Break," "A Man Apart") is the primary writer and will serve as Executive Producer, along with Ridley Scott and David W. Zucker; as well as John Morayniss and Michael Rosenberg for eOne. Eileen O'Neill and Dolores Gavin will serve as Executive Producers for Discovery.