Orange Is the New Black’s Litchfield Penitentiary is officially getting a new CO. Actress Marsha Stephanie Blake has reportedly been tapped to play a prison security guard on the next season of the hit Netflix dramedy.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Blake will join the show as a recurring cast member. Showrunner Jenji Kohan is vigilant about keeping any specific details surrounding the show under wraps, so no information about her character has been revealed just yet. But it seems Blake, whose previous credits include Django Unchained and Girls, hasn’t been able to stop herself from expressing excitement about the new role. The actress has shared multiple photos of herself in the Litchfield uniform on Instagram, also confirming her character’s name of Berdie Rogers.
Though we don’t know much about the upcoming season’s plotline, Berdie is likely being brought to the prison as replacement for former correctional guards Pornstache (Pablo Schreider) and Fischer (Lauren Lapkus). Pornstache, otherwise known as Officer Mendez, was himself imprisoned toward the end of last season. It was unclear whether the character would return to the show until earlier this summer, when Schreider confirmed he was leaving the series in order to take a lead role in HBO’s upcoming show The Brink.
Meanwhile, Lapkus’s sometimes meek but always lovable character, Fischer, was unceremoniously fired at the end of Season 2 after she spoke out against the newly instated shot quotas, which resulted in many of the inmates getting unfairly punished. Blake’s character will join the only returning correctional officer so far, Bennett (Matt McGorry), as well as their newly promoted boss, Caputo (Nick Sandow).
Blake is only the latest in a growing list of previously announced Season 3 additions. Actor-comedian Mike Birbiglia will also be joining the cast in a recurring role, although it has yet to be confirmed in what capacity he’ll appear. Mary Steenburgen (30 Rock) and Blair Brown (Fringe) have also signed on for two new parts in the upcoming season. As with Birbiglia’s character, though, what exactly those roles will entail has not been revealed.
In addition to the introduction of several new characters, viewers can also expect to some familiar faces. As previously announced, Lori Petty will be reprising her brief but memorable role as Lolly, an inmate who met Piper on a transport airplane during the Season 2 premiere — her first and only appearance on the show. Netflix has yet to comment on the circumstances surrounding her return, but it’s possible that Lolly will get transferred to Litchfield.
Season 3 will also mark the full-time return of Laura Prepon’s character, Alex Vause, who played a lead role in the first season but appeared in only a handful of episodes in the second season. Many of the previously featured actors on the show have also been promoted to series regulars this time around, including Selenis Leyva (Gloria), Adrienne C. Moore (Black Cindy), Samira Wiley (Poussey), and Dascha Polanco (Dayanara Diaz).
It will be one packed prison come Season 3. A return date for OITNB has not yet been announced, but it’s expected to be sometime next year.
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