The Spike network has given a straight to series order to Red Mars, based on a trilogy of Nebula and Hugo Award winning novels by Kim Stanley Robinson. The series is set to debut a 10-episode first season in January 2017 and is Spike’s first foray into ongoing scripted television programming for nine years.
The series comes from two-time Hugo Award winner J. Michael Straczynski (Sense8, Babylon 5), who will write and executive produce the programme, which is set to be made by production house Skydance Television. According to a press release, “Red Mars follows the first settlers charged with terraforming a mysterious planet, all of whom have competed to be a part of the mission. The series delves into the lives of these relative strangers, cut off from everything they’ve ever known and living in the harshest environment imaginable. Over time, viewers will witness the mind-blowing evolution of humans and technology as they learn to adapt in their inhospitable new home.”
“The heart and soul of Red Mars is about humanity,” said Sharon Levy, the Executive Vice President of Original Series at Spike. “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.”
Marcy Ross, the President of Skydance Television, also noted that “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.”
The books on which the show is based, collectively known as the Mars trilogy, consists of three novels–Red Mars (1993), Green Mars (1994) and Blue Mars (1996)–as well as The Martians (1999), a book of short stories set in the same continuity as the primary trilogy. The series earned universal acclaim and is considered by many to be one of the best stories about the Red Planet.