History has officially renewed the UFO drama series Project Blue Book for season 2. The show gets its name from the real-life Project Blue Book, a series of scientific studies concerning UFOs by the United States Air Force that began in 1952 and ended in 1970. Those studies were conducted to determine if UFOs posed a threat to national security, as well as to analyze data concerning unidentified flying objects.
The TV series Project Blue Book finds inspiration from those studies by delving into the world of unexplained events and UFO encounters. The show stars Aidan Gillen as Dr. J. Allen Hynek, an astrophysics professor who investigates the world of UFOs and supposed alien encounters. Each episode is based on actual case files from the real Project Blue Book and includes such legendary encounters as the Lubbock Lights of Texas and the Chiles-Whitted UFO Incident of Alabama. The series, which is executive produced by Robert Zemeckis, also features Michael Malarkey, Neal McDonough, Laura Mennell, Ksenia Solo, Michael Harney and Robert John Burke. Critical reception to the series is mostly positive, with many viewers comparing it to The X-Files. The series, which pulls in an average of 3.4 million viewers in Live-Plus-Three ratings, is currently the top new show on cable.
As expected, these strong ratings mean that the series will continue. Deadline reports that History has ordered season 2 consisting of 10 episodes of Project Blue Book. History Executive Vice President and Head of Programming Eli Lehrer said:
“We are believers in Project Blue Book and so is our audience who has sparked a conversation about the hundreds of unsolved cases and our nation’s military response to UFOs that have remained relatively secret until now. Zemeckis, A+E Studios and our extraordinary creative team have shaped a compelling narrative that is the perfect blend of historical authenticity and entertainment that inspires curiosity in our viewers to learn more. We’ve touched on a very relevant topic and look forward to a second season.”
History continues to make a name for itself with its scripted drama, which began with its first original scripted series, Vikings. That show premiered on the cable network in 2013. Now five seasons later, Vikings is wrapping itself up with its sixth and final season, although there is reportedly a spinoff show in the works.
History also recently renewed its original series Knightfall for season 2, with Mark Hamill added to the cast. That show centers around the Knights Templar and their presence in Paris, outlining their ultimate downfall that resulted in many knights being burned at the stake. Although History once had a reputation for its historical documentaries, the network has quickly become popular for its original historical fiction shows that have captured audiences' imaginations and taught them history in a way that many find entertaining. Project Blue Book might seem a little too sci-fi for the network, but at its heart, it is a drama based on something that actually happened in history.