Cinema Blend has news that Twitter enthusiast and podcast favourite Kevin Smith has revealed at Comic Con that cult character actor Michael Parks has been cast in his next feature, Red State. The film is loosely based on American pastor Fred Phelps, the reverend of  the awful, bigoted Westboro Baptist Church, and marks Smith’s first foray into thriller/horror territory.

Parks may not be immediately familiar to some, but he’s had a long and interesting career. One look at his IMDB page and it’s clear that during the 60’s and 70’s, he was the go-to guy if TV studios and filmmakers needed a cowboy or heavy. For anyone who has seen his more recent performances in many of the Tarantino/Rodriguez genre films (he’s been in From Dusk Till Dawn, both Kill Bills, Death Proof and Planet Terror) it’s clear this guy has a tremendous screen presence. In his short screen time in Kill Bill Vol. 2, playing Bill’s brothel-owning father figure, he’s truly electrifying.

Smith’s track record of late has been patchy to say the least and although he’s heading in a direction which may prove equally challenging to both his skills as a director and to his now well-established comedy fanbase, at least by casting someone likes Parks he’s going about it in the right way.