After years of languishing in Development Hell, Steven Spielberg’s live-action Halo TV series is finally taking shape — and with a commander at the helm.

On Thursday, Showtime announced that Otto Bathurst (Black Mirror, Robin Hood) will direct the pilot and multiple episodes of the nine-episode series, which will take inspiration from across the science fiction franchise. Kyle Killen, whose high-concept series Lone Star and Awake have achieved cult status as one-season wonders, serves as Halo’s executive producer, writer, and showrunner. Bathurst arrives to the project after directing two episodes of the BBC’s new His Dark Materials series.

343 Industries general manager Bonnie Ross and Xbox Entertainment Studios head Nancy Tellem announced the Halo television series, along with Spielberg’s role as a producer, in May 2013 at Microsoft’s Xbox One reveal. Six years later, 343 Industries and Spielberg’s Amblin Television remain the creative forces behind the series. Halo is due to roll cameras later this year, after losing the series’ original director, Rupert Wyatt (Rise of the Planet of the Apes), due to scheduling conflicts.

In a news release, Showtime says Halo will “take place in the universe that first came to be in 2001, dramatizing an epic 26th-century conflict between humanity and an alien threat known as the Covenant. Halo will weave deeply drawn personal stories with action, adventure and a richly imagined vision of the future.”

Showtime did not announce a premiere date for Halo, but with production only set to start later this year, fans who’ve been anticipating the series since the early days of Xbox One should set their sights on a 2020 release. On the games side, Master Chief is expected to return in Halo Infinite.


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