Her name isn’t exactly a household one, but something tells me that’s all about to change.
In what reps the first major piece of casting for Lost‘s fifth season, sources confirm to me exclusively that Zuleikha Robinson has been tapped to play the pivotal role of Ilana.
Couple things: Before you ask, it’s pronounced Zoo-Lika. And she’s done stuff. Some high-profile stuff. Like Fox’s short-lived New Amsterdam, where she played Nikolaj Coster-Waldau’s partner in crime. Prior to that, the London-born actress slaved away as Gaia on HBO’s Rome and, in her first big break, had a regular gig on another ill-fated Fox drama, the X-Files spin-off The Lone Gunmen.
Robinson’s Lost deal calls for her to start off as a recurring player with an option to become a series regular in season 6 (a.k.a. the farewell season).
As I first reported last month, Ilana is described as a European female who possesses great intelligence but who’s also dangerous as all get out. She’s alluring and apparently used to getting her own way.
At the time, EW’s Doc Jensen mused that Ilana "sounds exactly like the kind of lethal lady Sayid would fall for. So I’m wondering if the dashing Iraqi is due for a new love interest, yet another lady whose true motivations will be in question."
Team Darlton’s not commenting on Doc’s theory, or Robinson’s casting for that matter (this radio-silence thing is going to be the death of me!), so I guess we’ll just have to wait until the new season kicks off in (ugh) five long months to see if he’s right. In the meantime, go ahead and weigh in on Lost‘s first big season 5 casting and, while you’re at it, feel free to toss out your own Ilana theories.