Following the success of film-to-television adaptations like FX's Fargo and NBC's Hannibal, the latest property to hit the small screen will be SyFy's 12 Monkeys, a 13-episode series based on the renowned Terry Gilliam film.
The TV series follows a man from a post-apocalyptic future who goes back in time to eradicate a deadly disease. The original starred Bruce Willis, Madeleine Stowe, and Brad Pitt in an Oscar-nominated performance.
The show stars Aaron Sanford (Nikita, X2: X-Men United) as the time-traveler Cole, with Amanda Schull playing the Madeleine Stowe character of the original. The general plot is the same, though notably absent from the trailer is Brad Pitt’s role.
Given that they just started shooting, there isn’t much footage to work with, but the trailer still packs a dark and amusingly haunting punch. It seems like it’s covering much of the same material the film does, but if shows like Hannibal and Fargo have taught us anything, it’s that many of these series appear to follow familiar territory at first before veering off into different “untested” waters.
The show’s executive producer Richard Suckle has stated that they aren’t bringing the show to SDCC this year as it “…coincides with when we start shooting. We wanted to put the show first as we’re set to premiere in January.”
Co-exec producer Terry Matalas said that they wanted to make a “complete reimagining” of the original film, and that they will work towards building it up differently from the ground up. That might be questionable given the trailer, but they could be trying to lure people in on an already recognizable property.
The pilot was written by Terry Matalas and Travis Fickett. 12 Monkeys will premiere on Syfy in January 2015.