‘Bosch’ Creator Says a Network Wouldn’t Have Cast Titus Welliver as the Lead: Here’s Why

by Leanne Stahulak

After seven successful seasons on Amazon Prime, it’s hard to imagine anyone other than Titus Welliver in the lead role for “Bosch.”

Since 2014, Welliver has brought Harry Bosch to life on the small screen. He even voiced the audiobooks that the series was based on, written by Michael Connelly. Connelly, who’s actively involved in creating the show, believes Welliver is the perfect fit for the role.

But turning a hit crime book series into an original TV series is no easy feat. At the time, Amazon Prime was barely off the ground and didn’t have the breakthrough series other streaming platforms did. Connelly admitted to The Los Angeles Times that over the years, streaming has “changed culture.” Ultimately, he’s glad he took the risk with “Bosch.”

“This was the first drama that Amazon commissioned,” Connelly admitted. “It’s amazing to see what they’ve become, and we were able to hitch ourselves on to that wagon.”

Die-hard fans and supporters of the book series expressed their doubts, however. “When I said in 2012, ‘Let’s do this,’ there were those who said, ‘Are you sure? You’ve invested 20 years writing about this guy, and you’re going to give this to a company who says they’re going to do great things?’ It was a shot in the dark.”

Connelly had always thought about adapting the Harry Bosch books, but nothing really came out of it until the Amazon deal.

“In 1993, I sold my first two books to Paramount hoping to get a two-hour movie to explain who Harry Bosch was,” the author explained. “Instead of a two-hour movie, we’ve now got 68 hours of digging into Harry with this guy [pointing to Welliver].”

‘Bosch’ Star Titus Welliver Talks Being Cast As The Lead

“Bosch” creator Michael Connelly admits that Welliver might not have gotten the part if any other company than Amazon had proposed the show.

“We got the right people involved. If this had been a network show — I’m not trying to offend Titus — he would not have been cast,” Connelly told The Los Angeles Times. “It had to be something like Amazon that got us the guy who should be Harry Bosch.”

Why would a network be so afraid to cast Welliver? Likely because he’d never been a lead in a television series or film up to that point. Though he’s acted in several high-quality productions, it was always as a background or supporting role. So, Welliver decided to take a leap of faith when approached about playing Harry Bosch.

“When they first came to me, I didn’t know enough about streaming. I thought, ‘This is a brave new world,'” Welliver said.

While working on the show, Welliver really appreciated the freedom and creativity they could employ with it.

“The process of making the show was no different than making any other show. The difference was we were given more artistic license,” Welliver explained. “We had the luxury, the privilege to shoot one-hour episodes like they were one-hour movies.”

“I’ve got directors of photography, friends of mine who are in that world, who say, ‘This might be one of the best-shot shows of all time,’ We were able to slow-roll and slow-roast the stories so it would gestate properly, the way you experience one of Mike’s books.”