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SYFY WIRE The Walking Dead

WIRE Buzz: The Walking Dead VR trailer; Pippi Longstocking movie; Netflix's Shadow and Bone cast

By Jacob Oller
The Walking Dead Saints & Sinners screenshot

The Walking Dead has seen its popular zombie franchise become an undead multimedia empire, with the comic growing past the AMC show and into films, conventional video games, and now VR games. The Walking Dead Onslaught popped players into the universe for the first time, but the latest entry in the VR post-apocalypse is The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners.

This game sends survivors to the flooded streets of New Orleans, where they’ll battle walkers, humans, and the elements to make their way in the new world. Check out the trailer below:

Rather than the more combat-focused Onslaught, Saints & Sinners is focused on choice and morality — though, yes there are lots of things to kill and interesting ways to kill them. According to a release, the choices made in the game (like which faction, if any, to team with) “will affect not just how the combat plays out but the fate of the city and its other survivors.” Those hoping to make New Orleans a safe haven will need to act far differently than those out to be lone wolves or, perhaps, warlords.

The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners will hit VR devices on Jan. 23, 2020.

Next, the folks behind the adorable and pure Paddington universe are bringing another beloved children’s character to the big screen: Pippi Longstocking. STUDIOCANAL and Heyday Films, of Paddington and Paddington 2 fame, are teaming for a feature film adaptation of author Astrid Lindgren’s iconic and energetic red-haired little girl.

According to a release, the character that gained prominence in the ‘40s and had many, many, many adaptations in the years since will be hoping to capture some of the same endearing spirit found in the mostly live-action Paddington films. Since 1988's The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking, the character’s films have been mostly contained to her native Sweden. Now it’s time to bring her back to the U.S.

“Pippi has endured and inspired families everywhere through her life force, strength of character and her irrepressible joie de vivre,” said producer David Heyman. “Astrid Lindgren’s books have been translated around the globe for many years — a testament to her vision which we are determined to honour with a new film.”

No release date is yet set for the film.

Finally, Shadow and Bone, Netflix's adaptation of Leigh Bardugo's novels Shadow and Bone and Six of Crow, has begun production under showrunner Eric Heisserer (Arrival). According to a release, the fantasy show set in a world divided by an Under the Dome-esque wall of darkness is shooting its eight hour-long episodes in Budapest, Hungary.

The show has also announced its cast, which includes plenty of familiar faces. Ben Barnes (Westworld) plays General Kirigan, aka the Darkling. He leads the Second Army and will stop at nothing to free his people from the Shadow Fold — deploying his magical military in service of this goal. His army includes soldiers like Jessie Mei Li's orphaned Alina Starkov who's full of magical potential; Simon Sears' Ivan; and Sujaya Dasgupta's Zoya Nazyalensky, who can manipulate the weather. Archie Renaux plays Alina's childhood friend, Malyen Oretsev.

Much of the other cast plays members of the criminal underground. Freddy Carter (Pennyworth) plays rising crook Kaz Brekker. Amita Suman (Doctor Who) tackles Kaz's spy Inej, while Kit Young's Jesper Fahey is another member of the gang. Then things delve more into the fantasy genre. Danielle Galligan (Game of Thrones) plays Heartrender Nina Zenik (who can kill without even touching you) and Daisy Head plays Genya Safin, a shapeshifting Grisha. Sounds like Netflix will soon have an ambitious answer to Carnival Row.

“I was so wary going into this process because these characters have lived in my head for so long," said Bardugo. "Turns out I had nothing to fear. Watching these actors begin to inhabit these roles has been pure magic.”

Production for Shadow and Bone is underway now.