Snowpiercer TV series tries to stay on track as showrunner departs

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Jan 22, 2018, 3:03 PM EST

The common conductor refrain on a locomotive is "All aboard!" But one person isn't hopping on TNT's adaptation of the train-careening-through-dystopia action movie Snowpiercer.

Josh Friedman — who was originally going to serve as showrunner, and was an executive producer and writer on the pilot — has parted ways with the network over creative differences, sources close to the network tell SYFY WIRE. The series is now wanting for a leader, much like the people at the back of the train in the film needed someone to lead them in a revolt, which would eventually be spearheaded by Curtis Everett (Chris Evans).

Friedman's past credits include being showrunner on Fox's Terminator: The Sarah Conner Chronicles and executive producer on NBC's Emerald City. He also helped work on the screenplays for Steven Spielberg's remake of War of the Worlds and Brian De Palma's The Black Dahlia.

Taking place seven years after the earth has turned into a frozen wasteland, the Snowpiercer show focuses on humanity's last survivors living on a perpetually moving train that circles the globe. The train is a microcosm of a class-based society, depending on where people are: The poorer class can be found at the back and help keep the engines running, while the affluent live toward the front and enjoy rarefied creature comforts. Jennifer Connelly will play one of the privileged first-class members who becomes embroiled in a saga involving the less fortunate passengers. 

Annalise Basso, Antonio Cayonne, Daveed Diggs, Jesse Downs, Matreya Fedor, Sasha Frolova, Niki Garcia, Benjamin Haigh, Hiro Kanagawa, Katie McGuinness, and Sam Otto all co-star. Production on the show began back in September with Doctor Strange's Scott Derrickson signed on as director for the first episode. According to IMDB, the show is expected sometime this year.