First look at former Hollyoaks star Ricky Whittle in American Gods

He's come a long way since his days in Chester on the Channel Four soap Hollyoaks.

Actor Ricky Whittle was at Comic-Com International in San Diego to unveil the first trailer for his new US TV series American Gods.

The former Strictly Come Dancing contestant landed the lead role in the show, which is an adaptation of Neil Gaiman's popular fantasy novel.

The series is set in a world in which all gods live among humanity, with a battle brewing between the traditional deities and a set of new gods, who reflect the 21st century's preoccupation with wealth, celebrity and drugs.

The plot focuses on Ricky's character Shadow Moon, an ex-prisoner who becomes bodyguard to conman Mr Wednesday - played by fellow British actor Ian McShane - who is later revealed to be one of the older gods.

Ricky, from Oldham in Greater Manchester, previously starred in US series The 100 and played Calvin Valentine on Hollyoaks from 2006 to 2011.

Ricky Whittle and Natalie Lowe took part in Strictly Come Dancing
Ricky Whittle and Natalie Lowe on Strictly (PA)

He was runner-up on Strictly in 2009 when he was paired with professional dancer Natalie Lowe, losing out to Chris Hollins and Ola Jordan.

American Gods will air on Starz in America next year.

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