TCA 2018: Showtime's Halo TV series will star Master Chief as main character, tell "new story"

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Aug 6, 2018, 9:50 PM EDT

Ready for another large-scale science fiction show? This time, it's one based on a wildly successful Xbox video game series, but will Halo be the next Game of Thrones? Here are today's TCA updates on Showtime's much-anticipated Halo TV show.

In June, Showtime announced they'd be moving forward with their Halo TV series, ordering 10 episodes. The show had been lingering in development for years, but it finally seems like progress is being made, as evidenced by Showtime's session during the Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour.

Showtime's president of programming Gary Levine and CEO David Nevins both answered questions from reporters Monday, confirming Master Chief, Halo's most well-known character, will be a main character in the new series. 

Kyle Killen (Lonestar) will serve as the writer for the show, in addition to executive producing alongside Steven Spielberg. Levine said they worked specifically to hire a writer outside of genre, despite the show being firmly in the sci-fi camp. 

“We made a conscious decision to hire a writer not known for sci-fi or big battle movies because that’s already baked into the Halo franchise and we will service that, but we also wanted to make sure we were getting underneath the armor of the Spartans to the human drama, so it felt like it belonged on Showtime," said Levine (via Deadline). "Our hope is it will appeal to Halo fans and Showtime drama fans.”

It was also revealed during the panel that while the TV show "is a new story," the team is working with Microsoft 343 to make sure they don't disrupt canon. When asked if the series will be Showtime's Game of Thrones, the team stressed the difference between the two genre-wise.

“I’ve seen scripts. I think it’s a very different genre. It is futuristic, space-based science fiction," said Nevins. "It’s not fantasy. There’s been one iconic franchise in my opinion in the history of television in that category and that’s Star Trek."

Yes, we'll take another iconic sci-fi series, please. Unfortunately, we have some time to wait. The Halo TV show isn't in production yet, so likely won't be on your TV screen until 2020.

Click here for SYFY WIRE’s full coverage of the TCA 2018 summer press tour.