He may still be a long, long way from finishing his A Song of Ice and Fire series and he’s announced that there are FIVE Game of Thrones spin-offs in the works, but that hasn’t stopped George R. R. Martin from updating us on another new project he’s involved with: a TV adaptation of his book Nightflyers.
The new show, expected to air on SyFy in the United States and Netflix internationally next July, has been picked up for a ten-episode season. It will be filmed in Ireland to tap into “the same great pool of Irish and British actors that Game of Thrones has tapped in Belfast”, according to Martin.
Nightflyers is a horror novella published by the GoT author in 1980 and turned into a film in 1987. Set in the distant future, Nightflyers tells the story of a professor who hires a spaceship to intercept an alien spacecraft that could hold the key to the survival of Earth. As the crew approaches their destination, the ship’s jealous AI computer turns out to be evil and things quickly turn homicidal. Sounds absolutely ridiculous, and I love it.
Here’s the trailer from the cheesy-looking 1987 movie:
Martin wrote on his LiveJournal: “I finally had the chance to sit down and break bread with the guys who are bringing NIGHTFLYERS to television for the SyFy channel: writer/ creator Jeff Buhler, who scripted the pilot, and showrunner Daniel Cerone, who will helm the series.
“I read a draft of his pilot back in May, when I first heard of the NIGHTFLYERS television project. While it departs considerably from my novella in certain details, the essence of the story remains the same – and I thought the teleplay was quite strong on its own terms, and a good launching point for a series.
“Sometime in the last year or so, SyFy acquired the television rights… Honestly, at first I was baffled as to how they hoped to get a series out of my story, since at the end of the novella (and the film) pretty much everyone is dead (it was a horror story, after all).
“I was delighted to have the chance to sit down and talk with Jeff and Daniel, and learn more of their plans. NIGHTFLYERS was only a pilot script in May, but subsequently it has been picked up for a full ten-episode season order, with a substantial budget, one that should allow them to create a show that looks as good as modern audiences expect. They showed me drawings of some of the set designs, some very cool sets. They even showed me the NIGHTFLYER herself:
“NIGHTFLYERS will be shot in the Republic of Ireland, I’m told, on sound stages in Limerick… which will give them access to the same great pool of Irish and British actors that GAME OF THRONES has tapped in Belfast (and considering how many characters we’ve killed, a lot of them should be available). ((If by some miracles I actually complete enough of my other projects to create some free time, I’ve love to go over there and kill two birds with one flight by visiting both the GoT and NIGHTFLYERS sets… but that remains a long shot, given my current word load)). If all goes according to schedule, the series should debut this summer, in late July. It will be broadcast on SyFy in the USA, and on Netflix around the world.”
He added that his current mood was ‘excited’.
Same, George. Same.
(Images: REX / SyFy / Not A Blog)