‘The Patient’ Cast and Character Guide: Who’s Who in Hulu’s Serial Killer Drama?

·4 min read

At first, FX’s new drama “The Patient” is by and large a two-hander centered on psychologist Alan Strauss (Steve Carell) and the serial-killing patient, Sam Fortner (Domhnall Gleeson), who abducts him in a desperate attempt to stop himself from murdering again. But as the taut thriller series unfolds, it also expands, introducing a handful of key players beyond the walls of Alan’s prison/Sam’s basement, be it through memory, imagination, or Sam’s constantly tense trips back to the outside world.

If you’re wondering who’s who in “The Patient” cast, we’ve got you covered with a comprehensive roundup of the series’ stars — and where you’ve seen them before.

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Steve Carell as Alan Strauss

Steve Carell in FX series The Patient
Image via FX

Steve Carell stars as Alan Strauss, a therapist grieving the loss of his wife when he’s abducted by his serial killer patient, Sam, and forced to do his best at providing care and keeping Sam from killing again, while under extraordinary —and horrifying — circumstances.

After appearing on “The Dana Carvey Show” and “The Daily Show,” Carell earned 10 Emmy nominations during his seven seasons on “The Office.” Recognizable films include “The 40-Year-Old Virgin,” “Anchorman,” “The Big Short,” “Despicable Me,” and “Foxcatcher,” for which he was nominated for an Oscar. Before “The Patient,” Carell recently returned to TV in Netflix’s “Space Force” and Apple TV+’s “The Morning Show.”

Domhnall Gleeson as Sam Fortner

Domnhall Gleeson in FX series The Patient

Domhnall Gleeson stars as “The Patient” himself, Sam Fortner, a serial killer with a history of childhood abuse who finds himself guilt-ridden and miserable because of his violent compulsions. He wants to stop, but he doesn’t know how. His solution? Therapy. But when he realizes he has to lie during sessions in order to protect himself, he decides the only way it can work is if he kidnaps his therapist (Alan) and opens up about all his darkest secrets, on his terms.

Son of Brendon Gleeson, Irish actor Domhnall Gleeson has established himself as an acting force in his own right with a long resume of lauded performances, including “Frank,” “About Time,” “Ex Machina” and “The Revenant.” He’s perhaps most recognizable for playing Bill Weasley in the “Harry Potter” films and General Hux in the “Star Wars” franchise. In TV, he’s also starred in the devastating “Black Mirror” episode ‘Be Right Back,’ the Prime Video series “Frank of Ireland” (alongside brother Brian Gleeson) and the HBO series “Run.”

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Linda Emond as Candace Fortner

Lisa Emond as Candace in The Patient

Linda Emond stars as Sam’s mother, Candace Fortner. A fan of Alan’s published work who believes in the power of therapy, Candace has, all the same, struggled to provide the care her son needs, from his childhood to adult years, wracked by guilt over his abusive childhood and paralyzed by fear of what he’s become.

The three-time Tony Award-nominated actress has a long resume of TV, film and theater credits, including “Julie & Julia,” “Lodge 49,” “Succession” and “Law & Order: SVU.” She’ll also be seen in A24’s upcoming Jennifer Lawrence drama, “Causeway.”

Laura Niemi as Beth Strauss

Laura Niemi in The Patient

Laura Niemi stars as Alan’s recently deceased wife, Beth Strauss, whose influence still looms large over her family. An exuberant cantor at her synagogue, Beth had a fraught relationship with her son Ezra after he converted to Orthodox Judaism — a family dissolution that hung over Beth’s final days, and continues to haunt Allan after her death.

Niemi is best known for playing Jack Person’s (Milo Ventimiglia) mother in “This Is Us.” She also recently appeared in “Those Who Wish Me Dead,” “The Last Thing He Wanted” and the first episode of “Stranger Things” Season 4.

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Andrew Leeds as Ezra Strauss

Andrew Leeds in The Patient Promo Image

Andrew Leeds stars as Ezra Strauss, Alan and Beth’s son who grew estranged from his family after converting to Orthodox. Though he missed the opportunity to mend his relationship with his mother before she died, Ezra is seemingly unwilling to compromise as Alan tries to reconnect with his son and grandchildren despite their religious differences.

Leeds has a long resume of TV roles prior to “The Patient,” including Peter Benoit in “A Million Little Things,” Leo Cousineau in “Barry” and David in “Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist.”

David Alan Grier as Charlie Addison

David Alan Grier in FX series The Patient

David Alan Grier stars as Alan’s former therapist, Charlie Addison, whose lessons continue to guide and challenge Alan as he struggles to accept his new circumstances — and attempts to discover how to escape them.

A celebrated actor and comedian with more than 120 credits in film and TV, Grier is best known for his years as a mainstay on “In Living Color.” Recently, he has acted in Netflix’s comedy series “Dad Stop Embarrassing Me!” and Paramount’s live-action “Clifford the Big Red Dog” movie. Next up, he’ll star in the film adaptation of “The Color Purple” musical.

New episodes of “The Patient” debut Tuesdays on Hulu.

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