George R.R. Martin's Nightflyers TV series has reportedly lost showrunner Daniel Cerone, and will replace him with executive producer Jeff Buhler. Syfy and Universal Cable productions are producing the show which is said to have a "substantial budget." Syfy ordered a pilot last June, then in September ordered the show to series. The Nightflyers cast includes Gretchen Mol (Boardwalk Empire), Eoin Macken (Resident Evil: The Final Chapter), David Ajala (Jupiter Ascending), Sam Strike (Timeless), Maya Eshet (Teen Wolf), Angus Sampson (Mad Max: Fury Road), Jodie Turner-Smith (The Neon Demon), and Brían F. O’Byrne (Million Dollar Baby).
Martin, the author famed as the creator of the books that inspired Game of Thrones, penned Nightflyers in 1980. The sci-fi story follows the crew of the titular spacecraft as they journey to the fringes of the solar system hoping to make contact with aliens. The otherwise tight-knit crew, including eight scientists and a telepath, begins to question one another after a series of unexpected events. The story was previously adapted as a widely-derided 1987 feature film.
As reported by The Wrap, Nightflyers has already experienced its own crisis as it embarks on its journey to television screens, losing showrunner Daniel Cerone due to creative differences. Executive producer and series writer Jeff Buhler now steps into the showrunner role. Terry Matalas (12 Monkeys) also briefly came aboard as a consultant.
Could the showrunner swap be a sign of trouble on Nightflyers? That's hard to say. Creative differences do sometimes happen, as reportedly is the case with Cerone stepping aside. But that doesn't necessarily mean there's chaos behind-the-scenes. What has become evident is that Syfy is banking on Nightflyers being a big series for them, hence the "substantial budget." Syfy has developed some solid shows in recent years, including The Expanse, Dark Matter and The Magicians, but they've yet to create a true massive break-out series. The network surely hopes the George R.R. Martin brand name will help Nightflyers find a larger fanbase than their shows normally win. They're also hoping the same for Krypton, their Superman prequel series.
With so much sci-fi content filling so many platforms, Syfy sometimes feels lost in the shuffle. Lately, Netflix has attempted to achieve sci-fi dominance through their acquisitions of properties like Bright, The Cloverfield Paradox and Mute, as well as the series Altered Carbon. Despite the visual strength of those works, they arguably lack the real substance true sci-fi fans are looking for. Maybe Nightflyers can provide the meat to go along with the eye-candy.
Syfy has yet to announce a premiere date for the 10-episode first season of Nightflyers.
Source: The Wrap