Showtime’s live-action Halo TV series will no longer be directed and executive produced by Rupert Wyatt (Rise of the Planet of the Apes), according to Variety. Wyatt was set to direct multiple episodes of the hour-long series.
“It’s with great disappointment that changes to the production schedule of ‘Halo’ prevent me from continuing in my role as a director on the series,” Wyatt said. “My time on ‘Halo’ has been a creatively rich and rewarding experience with a phenomenal team of people. I now join the legion of fans out there, excited to see the finished series and wishing everyone involved the very best.”
“Showtime’s adaptation of ‘Halo’ is evolving beautifully with rich characters, compelling stories and powerful scripts,” added Gary Levine, Showtime’s president of programming. “Obviously, the production demands of this series are enormous, and we have had to add time to the schedule in order to do it right. Sadly, this delay has created a conflict for Rupert, whom we warmly thank for all he has brought to the project.”
In June, Showtime officially ordered a 10-episode season of the live-action, scripted drama Halo, based on the hallowed Xbox franchise, with Kyle Killen (Awake) serving as executive producer, writer and showrunner. Master Chief will be a lead character in the series, which they are aiming to premiere in 2020. Master Chief is the protagonist of the Halo universe created by Bungie.
“It is a very different genre, it’s futuristic, space-based science fiction, it’s not fantasy,” Showtime President and CEO David Nevins said previously. “It took us a long time to get the script but we felt like we had something that was really interesting and felt like it belonged on Showtime in terms of its character depth, and it’s gonna be a big show.”
Produced by Showtime in association with Microsoft/343 Industries, along with Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Television, the Halo TV series will begin production in early 2019.
Halo reinvented how people think about video games and has grown into a global entertainment phenomenon, having sold more than 77 million copies worldwide and grossing more than $5 billion in sales. In its adaptation for Showtime, 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.
The Halo TV series will be executive produced by Killen and Scott Pennington, along with Justin Falvey and Darryl Frank for Amblin Television. The series will be distributed globally by CBS Studios International.