The Peacock original drama, A Friend of the Family features a star-studded cast that brings to life a true crime case. The series is based on the real kidnapping of Jan Broberg Felt, who was twice abducted by family friend Robert Berchtold. The drama’s cast includes acclaimed actors as well as emerging talents.
A Friend of the Family was created by Nick Acosta, who is best known for horror series such as Channel Zero and Brand New Cherry Flavor but has also ventured into true crime with the limited series The Act. The series is one of many dramatizations of true crime cases that have been released on streaming services in 2022, such as HBO Max’s The Staircase and Hulu’s The Girl from Plainville.
The case that A Friend of the Family examines was previously the subject of the Netflix documentary Abducted in Plain Sight. The story takes place in multiple time frames in 1970s Iowa. As a result, the younger characters are played by different actors at different points in the narrative. Here’s who plays each character in A Friend of the Family and where you know them from.
Jake Lacy as Robert “B” Berchtold
Robert Berchtold is a seemingly ordinary neighbor who turns out to be a child abductor. Jake Lacy is primarily known for largely comedic television roles, including playing Pete on the final season of The Office and Shane Patton in The White Lotus, the latter of which garnered him an Emmy nomination. He has also appeared in films such as Obvious Child and Carol.
Anna Paquin as Mary Ann Broberg
Anna Paquin plays the matriarch of the Broberg household, Mary Ann. A high-profile actress since she was a child, Paquin may be best known for playing Rogue in the X-Men movies or Sookie Stackhouse in True Blood. She has also received positive reception for her performances in films such as The Piano, for which she won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress at 11 years old.
Colin Hanks as Bob Broberg
Bob Broberg is the father of Jan Broberg who becomes concerned about Berchtold’s relationship with his daughter. Colin Hanks is the son of legendary actor Tom Hanks and has built up his own strong on-screen resume. Hanks’ previous credits include the Jumanji film series, Fargo season 1, and Impeachment: American Crime Story.
Lio Tipton as Gail Berchtold
Gail is Robert’s wife, who appears oblivious to his plans. Tiptold is a former model who appeared on America’s Next Top Model and has since moved into acting. They have played small roles on comedies such as sitcom The Big Bang Theory and the remake of Murphy Brown, and starred in the short-lived ABC comedy Manhattan Love Story.
McKenna Grace and Hendrix Yancey as Jan Broberg
Jan is the victim of Berchtold’s abduction and one of the central figures in A Friend of the Family. Later in life, the real Jan Broberg became an actress and singer, appearing in several small TV and movie roles, and she also personally provides an introduction to the series. Playing the older version of Jan is McKenna Grace, a teenage actress and singer whose recent roles include Phoebe Spengler in Ghostbusters: Afterlife and Mary Adler in Gifted. The younger version of Jan is played by Hendrix Yancey, who is best known for appearing as Thirteen in Stranger Things.
A Friend of the Family Supporting Cast
Mila Harris and Maggie Sonnier as Karen Broberg – Karen is one of Jan’s younger sisters. Harris, who plays the younger Karen, has previously appeared in Hulu’s No Exit, while this is Sonnier’s first screen credit.
Ella Lisic and Norah Murphy as Susan Broberg – Susan is Jan’s other sister. The older Susan is portrayed by Murphy, who played Sarah in Karen, while the young Lisic is making her screen debut.
Austin Stowell as Peter Walsh – Walsh is an FBI Agent investigating the case in A Friend of the Family. Stowell previously appeared in the Dolphin Tale movies and played Francis Gary Powers in Bridge of Spies.
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