SyFy is on the hunt for more new series to add to their roster of original programming, and now they’re looking to the mid-1990s for some inspiration.
The network is developing an ongoing series based on 12 Monkeys, the 1995 post-apocalyptic thriller directed by Terry Gilliam. In the film, Bruce Willis played a criminal in a future where most of Earth’s population has been wiped out by a virus supposedly unleashed by a terrorist organization that called itself the Army of the 12 Monkeys. Willis’ character is enlisted by a group of scientists to travel back in time to the early 1990s to pinpoint the origins of the virus and possibly stop the Army from destroying most of the human race. Once he reaches his destination he discovers that everything he knew was a fabrication and must rely on the help of a psychiatrist (Madeline Stowe) and the insane son (Brad Pitt) of a prominent virologist (Christopher Plummer) to save the world while simultaneously attempting to deduce if he is actually going mad and the entire adventure is a figment of his imagination.
Inspired by the 1962 French short film La jetée and written by Blade Runner/Unforgiven scribe David Peoples and his wife Janet Peoples, 12 Monkeys grossed $168 million worldwide and earned Academy Award nominations for Pitt’s brilliant supporting performance and for the costume design. Pitt didn’t win the Oscar, but he took home the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor. Since its theatrical release, Gilliam’s remarkable science-fiction drama has increased its audience through home video sales and cable airings.
Chuck Roven and Richard Suckle of Atlas Entertainment served as producers on the 1995 movie and will be reprising their roles on the prospective 12 Monkeys TV series. The plan is to launch the new show as a 90-minute film that will act as a backdoor pilot that will lead directly into the series, as SyFy’s hugely successful Battlestar Galactica reboot did a decade earlier. The script for the pilot film will be written by Nikita and Terra Nova scribes Terry Matalas and Travis Fickett and directed by longtime 24 producer Jon Cassar for Universal Cable Productions. 12 Monkeys is one of five to six new series SyFy hopes to launch next year including High Moon from Bryan Fuller (Hannibal) and Proof from M. Night Shyamalan.
[Source: Hollywood Reporter]