Monday, December 7, 2015

Spike Gives Straight-to-Series Order to Drama 'Red Mars'

Spike is continuing to move into scripted programming with a 10-episode straight-to-series order for drama Red Mars. The drama is set to go into production next summer for a premiere on the network in January 2017.

Based on Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars Trilogy of novels, the series will chronicle mankind's colonization and transformation of he red planet. It follows the first settlers charged with terraforming a mysterious planet, all of whom have competed to be a part of the mission. These relative strangers are cut off from everything they've ever known and are living in the harshest environment imaginable.

Sense8 co-creator J. Michael Straczynski will serve as writer, executive producer and showrunner on the first season. He will executive produce with Vince Gerardis, David Ellison, Dana Goldberg and Marcy Ross. Robinson will serve as a consultant. Skydance Television and Studio JMS will produce.

"The heart and soul of Red Mars is about humanity. This group of strangers must find a way to live together and survive under the most daunting conditions mankind has ever faced to become the first living generation of Martians. They will be each other's greatest source of strength - and if they can't coexist - the greatest reason for failure," said Sharon Levy, Executive Vice President of Original Series, Spike.

"We are thrilled to join forces with Spike to bring Kim Stanley Robinson's dynamic world of the Mars trilogy to television audiences for the first time ever, particularly in the brilliant creative voice of science fiction legend J. Michael Straczynski," added Marcy Ross.

The order for Red Mars comes on the hells of Spike nearing a decade without original scripted programming. In July 2015, the network aired miniseries Tut starring Ben Kingsley and averaged 2.2 million viewers over three nights. The network recently axed plans for an ongoing drama series titled Harvest after ordering a 10-episode season as the network had trouble finding a showrunner and high-profile actor for the lead role.