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It’s hard to picture life before Riverdale. Since the show premiered in 2017, stars like Lili Reinhart, Camila Mendes and KJ Apa have blown up to become household names. So what will happen to the Katy Keene cast? ICYMI, Katy Keene, based on the Archie Comics of the same name, premieres on the CW Thursday, February 6. It’s the second spinoff to come after Riverdale following Netflix’s Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.
The show, which stars Pretty Little Liars alum and teen mystery legend Lucy Hale, is about an aspiring fashion designer named Katy Keene who moves to New York City chase her dreams. While there, she meets several other go-getters who are also in the Big Apple for their careers. Among them is a Riverdale character (more on that later.) But Hale isn’t the only Katy Keene cast member who seems familiar. Many on the cast have recognizable careers that are sure to blow up even more after the spinoff’s premiere. (Call it the Riverdale effect.) We dove into the IMDB pages and resumes of the Katy Keene cast to find out what their deals were before they became CW idols. Find out those answers ahead.
Katy Keene premieres on Thursday, February 6, on the CW at 8 p.m. E.T./7 p.m. CT.
Lucy Hale as Katy Keene
We know who Lucy Hale is: She played Aria Montgomery on Freeform’s Pretty Little Liars. Then, she starred in her first post-PLL show, 2018’s Life Sentence on The CW. Life Sentence was cancelled after one season, but it was enough for the bigwigs at The CW to cast Hale as the lead in Katy Keene: Ms. Katy Keene herself. In the show, Hale plays an aspiring fashion designer who is trying to make in New York City. Anyone who’s read the Archie Comics knows that Katy Keene reaches her dreams and becomes that designer she wanted, but it wasn’t an easy road to get there.
Ashleigh Murray as Josie McCoy
If the name “Josie McCoy” sounds familiar, that’s because it is. Josie starred in three seasons of Riverdale as the lead singer of Josie and the Pussycats and Archie Andrews’ short-lived romance. Josie left at the end of season 3 to pursue a music career, and lo and behold, she’s doing just that in Katy Keene. The spinoff is set five years ahead of Riverdale, so Josie is no longer a teenager but an adult who’s trying to make it in the music industry without her pussycats. Murray, who plays Josie, has been in the Netflix movie Deidra & Laney Rob a Train and the ABC sitcom Alexa, Inc. since Riverdale. Katy Keene has also been advertised as a musical, so expect lots of music from Murray and Josie.
Jonny Beauchamp as Jorge / Ginger Lopez
Beauchamp stars as Jorge, a Broadway actor who also performs in drag under the name Ginger Lopez. Katy Keene sees Jorge put his Broadway career on hold to try to make it as a successful drag performer. Beauchamp, who played gender-fluid character Ray/Ramona Garcia in 2015’s Stonewall, told NewNowNext that he’s glad the role of Jorge/Ginger didn’t go to a heterosexual man. “It blows your mind, and I think we need more of it: a queer person playing a queer person. The best queer stuff goes to heterosexual men,” he said. “It’s high time we start allowing queer people to interpret and display and actually be the vessel. Since we’ve walked in the shoes, we can bring something that a heterosexual male maybe cannot. So I just feel really lucky that I’ve been picked to do that.”
Julia Chan as Pepper Smith
Deadline described Pepper Smith as an “It” girl, who’s “funny, magnetic” and the “life of the party.” The magazine also calls the character the “epicenter of all things trendy,” who dreams of running her own fashion empire. However, there is mystery around Pepper’s life: No one knows how she has her money or if she really even has any. (Anna Delvey has entered the chat.) We’re not sure what will happen to Pepper in Katy Keene, but based on her fashion interests, it’s assumed that she and Katy will be either allies or competitors. Julia Chan, a British actor who grew up between Hong Kong and the U.K., plays Pepper. She’s also voiced Pickles Aplenty in BoJack Horseman and starred in show’s like Schitt’s Creek, Saving Hope and Gotham.
Camille Hyde as Alexandra Cabot
Alexandra Cabot is a powerful New York socialite who’s trying to work her way up in her father’s company. She’s also the sister of Alexander Cabot. (More on him later.) As for Camille Hyde, who plays Alexandra, the Washington D.C.-raised actress has starred as young Jessica Pearson in Suits and acted in shows like Heathers and The Good Doctor.
Lucien Laviscount as Alexander Cabot
Laviscount stars as Alexandra’s brother, Alexander Cabot. Alexander is the CEO of his father’s company who has real dreams of reviving a dead record company. Laviscount, a British actor, may be familiar to Big Brother fans. He starred in the U.K. version of Celebrity Big Brother in 2011, and played a series regular character in season 1 of Scream Queens. He was also set to play the lead in the Supernatural spinoff, Supernatural: Bloodlines before the show was nixed by The CW. Still, Laviscount must’ve made an impression on the network as he was cast a major character in Katy Keene.
Zane Holtz as K.O. Kelly
K.O. Kelly is a boxer and Katy’s longtime boyfriend, who has dreams of fighting in a welterweight championship in New York City’s Madison Square Garden. For money, he works as a personal trainer and a bouncer. Holtz, a model and actor from Canada, was a lead in Netflix’s From Dusk till Dawn: The Series. He was also male model on America’s Next Top Model (fun fact) and has starred in CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, CSI: Miami, Cold Case and NCIS. (So much probs much diff than Katy Keene.)
Katherine LaNasa as Gloria Grandbilt
Katherine LaNasa stars as Gloria Grandbilt, whose name seems eerily similar to fashion designer and socialite Gloria Vanderbilt. The character is described as a personal shopper at the luxury department store Lacy’s (a.k.a. Macy’s?), which caters to the rich and famous. LaNasa has had a lengthy sitcom career in shows like Three Sisters and Two and a Half Men. She’s also starred in the legal drama Judging Amy, as well as the HBO show Big Love.