The Walking Dead creators are blasting off into space by giving a new lease on life to Frederik Pohl’s award-winning sci-fi novel Gateway.
Variety reports Skybound Entertainment (the multiplatform company created by Robert Kirkman and David Alpert — the dudes behind The Walking Dead and Outcast) has nabbed the rights to adapt the author’s 1977 first contact novel as a TV series. Skybound’s film and TV arm will produce, with Frederik Pohl IV attached to the project as creative consultant.
Originally set up at SYFY back in 2015 with David Eick (Battlestar Galactica) and Josh Pate (Falling Skies) slated to produce, and Eick serving as showrunner, that take on the project sadly fell by the wayside. The year before (2014), Entertainment One Television (Hell on Wheels) and De Laurentiis Co. (Hannibal) had their own plans to develop it as a TV series. Hopefully the third time is a charm.
Gateway follows the story of poor young miner Robinette Stetley Broadhead, who buys a one-way ticket for Gateway, a space station built into a hollow asteroid constructed by a vanished alien race (the Heechee) in hopes of a better life. Gateway is filled with abandoned spaceships, and despite the dangers (the ships are preprogrammed for unknown destinations, meaning one can be blasting off toward certain death), the lure of riches proves hard to resist.
The first of six novels making up the Heechee Saga, Gateway won a bunch of awards, including the 1977 Nebula Award for Best Novel and the 1978 Hugo Award in the same category. It was even adapted as a video game in 1992 with a sequel, Gateway II: Homeworld, being released for PC the following year. Skybound not only snatched the rights to adapt the first novel, they also have the option of adapting all six books of the epic space opera.
What do you think of The Walking Dead creators adapting Gateway as a TV series? Can this creative team finally pull it off?