Josh Hartnett is back. He stars in the new Showtime series, Penny Dreadful, premiering May 11.

Some of literature's most famously terrifying characters, including Dr. Frankenstein and his creature, Dorian Gray and iconic figures from the novel Dracula become embroiled in Victorian London.

Hartnett was a Hollywood heartthrob for years, appearing in huge hits like Pearl Harbor, Black Hawk Down, 40 Days and 40 Nights, Halloween H20, and Sin City. He took some time off, made some independent films and even shied away from the Hollywood scene for several years. Now, he's playing Ethan Chandler on this exciting, spooky new series.

Ethan Chandler is a charming American who finds himself trapped in the darkest corners of Victorian London, Ethan's charm and brash ways are catnip to the ladies. When Sir Malcolm enlists him to help in a personal quest, Ethan meets Brona Croft, a beautiful local with a mysterious past. But behind Ethan's bright eyes lurk dark secrets. He is running from something, and his troubling past threatens to overtake him at every turn.

The show premiered at this year's SXSW Film Festival and Hartnett spoke with Indiewire about working on TV instead of film - a common theme among A-list actors recently.

These days a lot of good work is being done on television, so why not go work in TV? I've never had the fear of any medium that some people have in the past, but -- to be honest -- I've also done quite a few independent films that haven't been seen by many people. It's a lot of work down the drain in a way because when people do see them eventually somewhere down the line on Netflix, they say, "Oh, that's a good film. Why didn't we hear about this?" And you go, "There was no P&A [promotion and advertising] behind it." "Why was there no P&A behind it?" "Well, it was trying to do something a little bit different. It didn't fit into the construct of what the studios were looking for at the time." So this is off the beaten path enough, and it's going to be seen. It's great. You get to work with these people. That's the biggest thing -- I'm excited to have the work that I'm doing seen by masses of people as opposed to having it only be seen eventually down the line when it doesn't make a difference to my career.

Here's what else is cool about the show - it was created by writer John Logan, Oscar-nominated writer of The Aviator.

Penny Dreadful is already getting great buzz. Watch the Season 1 Trailer here and then watch some clips from our own Hartnett gallery below.

New Series Premiere: Sun, May 11 at 10 PM ET/PT on Showtime.