The River Cast and Characters

The River Cast and Characters

The River TV show has a steady following and people are beginning to wonder if the Magus crew will ever find Emmet Cole.

So far The River cast and characters have excelled at showing us their emotions in times of danger and horror. Since the show is filmed in an ad-hock documentary style, it's easier to forget the characters on The River are just that, characters. They take on a life of their own and viewers begin to wonder if it's a real documentary. This is a true credit to the cast of the River and hopefully this will continue as we meet new people in the Biuna.

Please continue reading if you would like more information on the River cast and characters.

Bruce Greenwood as Dr. Emmet Cole
Bruce Greenwood as Dr. Emmet Cole

Dr. Emmet Cole

Bruce Greenwood plays Dr. Emmet Cole.

Emmet Cole was an intrepid explorer and had a nature documentary called the Undiscovered Country. However, Emmet has gone missing in the Amazon, along with his crew. His loved ones and a TV crew decide to locate the beacon and hopefully Emmet. Although they are unsuccessful so far, they have come to learn that Emmet was chasing something.

Emmet Cole believed in the unbelievable, especially magic. He is able to start a fire in his hands, walk on water and perform other magic tricks. This was not enough and he embarked on a dangerous voyage to find the source of the magic. Unfortunately, he appears to be missing and no-one knows if he is still alive.

Bruce Greenwood has had a long career in TV. He was in Knots Landing, Nowhere Man, Class of the Titans and John from Cincinnati. More recently he has appeared in a number of popular movies such as National Treasure: Book of Secrets and Star Trek.

Leslie Hope as Tess Cole
Leslie Hope as Tess Cole

Tess Cole

Leslie Hope plays Tess Cole.

Tess Cole is the wife of Emmet Cole. She is in charge of the search for Emmet on The RIver and she wants her husband back. Although their relationship was strained before he left, she still clearly loves him.

Leslie Hope is most recognizable for her role as Teri Bauer in 24, however she was also in Knots Landing.

Joe Anderson as Lincoln Cole
Joe Anderson as Lincoln Cole

Lincoln Cole

Joe Anderson plays Lincoln Cole.

Lincoln is the son of Emmet and Tess Cole. He was raised on the Magus and in front of the camera's.

He is not a fan of his father as they did not always agree. Lincoln has created a life for himself far from his fathers reach.

He is a trained doctor and never believed in magic until now.

Sometimes it is unclear what Lincoln's feelings are for Lena Landry.

Joe Anderson has been in a number of movies. These include titles such as Becoming Jane, High Life and Flutter.


Eloise Mumford as Lena Landry
Eloise Mumford as Lena Landry

Lena Landry

Eloise Mumford plays Lena Landry.

Lena is the daughter of the missing cameraman Russ Landry. She was also raised on the Magus, alongside Lincoln. However, she has kept in contact with her father over the years and loved him dearly.

Lena has a special mark in her hairline. Although we do not know what it is, or what it signifies, Emmet Cole believes it is important. It matches the symbol on a necklace he gave to Lincoln as a child. This necklace was from a Shaman who told Emmet he would know who to give it to, when the time was right. Lena has only recently discovered this mark.

Emmet also kept in touch with Lena and shared information with her that he kept from everyone else.

Lena comes clean to one of the cameramen that she is the one that activated the homing beacon remotely. The rest of the search crew are still unaware of this.

Eloise Mumford has had a few TV roles in programs such as Crash and Lone Star.


Paul Blackthorne as Clark Quitely
Paul Blackthorne as Clark Quitely

Clark Quitely

Paul Blackthorne plays Clark Quitely.

Clark was Emmet's producer but had an affair with Emmet's wife. He is still in love with her but Tess seems more interested in finding her husband. Clark seems more interested in making a TV show about the search for Emmet Cole than in actually finding him. He is also in charge of the other cameramen onboard the Magus.

Paul Blackthorne is the most recognizable cast member for me, as he is British. He was most recently in The Gates, where he played a Vampire that coveted another's wife. Before that he was in Lipstick Jungle, Big Shots and The Dresden Files.

Thomas Kretschmann as Captain Kurt Brynildson
Thomas Kretschmann as Captain Kurt Brynildson

Captain Kurt Brynildson

Thomas Kretschmann plays Captain Kurt Brynildson.

Kurt is a bodyguard that was hired to keep the crew safe while searching the Amazon for Emmet. However, Kurt clearly has other motives. Kurt has a satellite phone hidden in his equipment and he has called "someone" to tell them about his progress in finding the source. We are assuming he knows more about Emmet Cole's search for the source that he has implied so far.

So far Clark is the only one suspicious of Kurt's actions. No-one else seems to be aware of Kurt's double agenda.

Kurt Brynildson speaks with a foreign accent and has clearly worked out. He reminds me a typical Arnold Schwarzeneggar type character.

It should come as no surprise that Thomas Kretschmann is German. He has appeared in a number of German movies before moving on to bigger projects. He was in Blade II, Resident Evil Apocalypse and King Kong.


Daniel Zacapa as Emilio Valenzuela
Daniel Zacapa as Emilio Valenzuela

Emilio Valenzuela

Daniel Zacapa plays the Magus ship captian, Emilio Valenzuela.

Emilio is a nice guy and he keep the ship moving. He worked for Emmet on the Magus for many years but Emmet fired him before his last voyage. He was fired to keep him and his daughter safe.

Emilio knows a lot about magic and strange things that happen. His wife had "the gift" just like his daughter does. It was this gift that killed his wife and he worries it will do the same to his daughter.

Daniel Zacapa is another one to be in Knots Landing and appeared in a few episodes of Hill Street Blues. He was in Resurrection Blvd for a few years too. He actually looks a lot like David Zayas who plays Sgt. Angel Batista in Dexter.


Paulina Gaitan as Jahel Valenzuela.
Paulina Gaitan as Jahel Valenzuela.

Jahel Valenzuel

Paulina Gaitan plays Jahel Valenzuela.

She is the daughter of the ships mechanic and helps him keep the ship moving. She is experienced in the daily operations of the ship. She speaks Spanish and struggles to say anything in English. So far, Jahel seems to know more about the mysterious things happening in the jungle than anyone else on the ship.

Jahel was possessed by Emmet and told the search crew to go home. When Jahel gets scared or tries to talk to the crew then generally something bad is happening or about to happen.

Paulina Gaitan has appeared in mainly foreign films where she can speak her native tongue.


Shaun Parkes as A. J. Poulian
Shaun Parkes as A. J. Poulian

A. J. Poulian

Shaun Parkes plays A. J. Poulian.

A. J. is the lead cameraman. He has managed to survive a fairly long time in the jungle, especially when you consider he is the only black person in the TV show.

A. J. is all about the perfect shot. So far he has had to face his own person fear of small spaces. By facing this fear he managed to save the crew and himself in the process.

Shaun Parkes is another British actor. Before The River, he was in Tinga Tinga Tales, Identity and Harley Street.


Scott Michael Foster as Jonas Beckett
Scott Michael Foster as Jonas Beckett

Who's the Best Character in The River?

  • Emmet Cole
  • Tess Cole
  • Lincoln Cole
  • Lena Landry
  • Clarke Quitely
  • Capt. Kurt Brynildson
  • Emilio Valenzuela
  • Jahel Valenzuela
  • A. J.
  • Jonas Beckett
See results without voting

Jonas Beckett

Scott Michael Foster plays Jonas Beckett.

Jonas was one of the original cameramen that went missing with Emmet.

Jonas is a party boy that loves to travel and fails to take life seriously. Lena interviewed him for the job and chose him as the new cameraman.

While travelling with Emmet in the Amazon, Jonas failed to heed Emmet's advice and filmed someone dying. He wanted to do this as no-one had ever taped the event before. However, he traps the Elder's soul in the camera and the Hanging Man haunts Jonas, as he wants the soul back.

Emmet abandons Jonas to the jungle and the search crew find him many months later. Jonas is saved but the Hanging Man wants him back. Eventually Jonas's camera breaks releasing the spirit and releasing the Hanging Man's need for vengeance.

Jonas continues to work for Clark as a cameraman and could be a potential love interest for Lena.

Scott Michael Foster was most recently in Californication. However, his longest running role was in the Greek TV series, where he played the character Cappie.

You can now see Scott Michael Foster in the Zero Hour TV Show on ABC.


Lee Tergesen as Russ Landry
Lee Tergesen as Russ Landry

Russ Landry

Lee Tergesen plays Russ Landry.

Russ has worked on the Magus since Lena was a little girl. Russ was the lead cameraman with Emmet until he decided Emmet was crazy and was leading them to their deaths. Russ stayed with the ship.

Lena and the rest of the rescue team find Russ trapped on a boat, as some kind of ghost. He has become something else and is destroyed when the sun hits him the next morning.

Lee Tergesen has had a long acting career and some of his longer running roles included Weird Science and Oz. Most recently he was Officer Boone in Army Wives.


Katie Featherston as Rosetta Fischer, aka Rabbit.
Katie Featherston as Rosetta Fischer, aka Rabbit.

Rosetta Fischer

Katie Featherston plays Rosetta Fischer, also called Rabbit.

Rabbit is the only female camera woman on the show. She was with Emmet when he went missing. She grew up watching his documentary and had a crush on him. When she tries to form a closer relationship she is rejected.

Rabbit gets freaked out by all the freaky things happening around them. She steals the last of the food and survival gear and leave Emmet alone in the jungle.

Rabbit is still missing.

Katie Featherston must be used to Oren Peli by now as she has been in all 3 installments of Paranormal Activity, and is set to be in the fourth.

Although these River characters are popular there is no guarantee they will survive to the end of the season.

A number of characters have already died so almost no-one is safe. However, there are options for the audience to see them again, in the form of flashbacks or in supernatural ways such as possession or ghosts.


Find out why you're favorite River cast and characters won't be returning next year by reading this hub.

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Comments 5 comments

Xenonlit profile image

Xenonlit 4 years ago

You make me want to hit the "on demand" and watch this show! Good review.


Lauryallan profile image

Lauryallan 4 years ago Author

Yeah you should Xenolit. I was pleasantly surprised that I liked the show. It's way better than I thought it would be since I am not a fan of paranormal activity.


Xenonlit profile image

Xenonlit 4 years ago

My only complaint is that Black women and other women of color simply do not seem to exist in these worlds! When they do, they are marginal, stereotypes or sex objects. It is kind of sickening and hard to get past.


Lauryallan profile image

Lauryallan 4 years ago Author

Yeah I know what you mean. Maybe you'll like Scandal when it comes out later as I am pretty sure it stars a black woman


Layla 4 years ago

I ship Jahel/Lincoln totally! Lincoln, Jahel, and AJ are my favorite characters!

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