2001: A Space Odyssey, Stanley Kubrick's 1968 adaptation of science-fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke’s novel has become a classic in its near-half century existence. with the author’s help. Clarke went on to write three sequels to 2001: A Space Odyssey over the next three decades -- 2010: Odyssey Two, 2061: Odyssey Three, and 3001: The Final Odyssey.
But aside from Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, the only other novel in Clarke’s series to receive an adaptation was 2010: Odyssey Two -- which Peter Hyams (End of Days, Timecop) brought to life in 1984 -- that is, until now.
Variety reports that the Syfy network is developing an adaptation of 3001: The Final Odyssey with Ridley Scott (Exodus: Gods and Kings) and David W. Zucker (The Good Wife) attached to executive produce. Stuart Beattie (Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, I, Frankenstein) will also executive produce as well as write the script; newcomer Clayton Krueger is set to co-executive produce.
Scott and Zucker are long-time producing partners who have worked together on a number of television series and miniseries such as The Good Wife, Numb3rs, Pillars of the Earth, and Prophets of Science Fiction (a documentary style miniseries, with one episode focused on the works of Clarke).
The less said about the novel's plot the better, but it follows directly on the themes and story of the 2001 cast that audiences will be familiar with. Those connections will likely lead to a boost in viewings ahead of 3001, but the talent lined up for the project (both in front of an behind the camera) will likely be a deciding factor in how successful the network is in drawing in viewers.
Although Syfy’s reputation for quality science fiction programming as opposed to schlocky B-movie fare may have suffered in recent years -- especially at the hand (fins?) of the Sharknado franchise -- the network’s television lineup offers a wide variety of content in the sci-fi/fantasy subgenre with both reality and scripted programs. However, much of Syfy’s "original" television programming is adapted from (and relying upon) other media -- Dominion, Haven, and the upcoming 12 Monkeys -- or imported from other countries, as is the case with Lost Girl, Continuum, and Bitten.
That being said, 2001: A Space Odyssey is a beloved sci-fi movie. An adaptation of 3001: The Final Odyssey could be exactly what Syfy needs to draw in fans of classic sci-fi, with a higher level of quality aiming to keep them watching. Additionally, with a team of veterans at the helm in the form of Scott, Zucker, and Beattie, Syfy seems to have secured a solid team to continue Kubrik and Clarke’s legacy.
3001: The Final Odyssey is currently in (very) early development.