When most people these days hear George R. R. Martin’s name, it usually evokes one of two emotions: 1) Appreciation that he was responsible for the source material behind Game of Thrones, and 2) Impatience related to when, exactly, he’s going to be finished with The Winds of Winter, the long-awaited sixth book in his A Song of Ice and Fire series.
Ever since Martin announced that The Winds of Winter wouldn’t be completed prior to the premiere of Game of Thrones’ sixth season, there’s been no word from Martin or anyone else on how close the author is to finishing the long-awaited novel. However, there’s now word that another TV show derived from Martin’s non-Game of Thrones work is on its way to screens.
Wild Cards, a series of sci-fi superhero stories and anthologies that Martin co-edited and contributed to starting in 1987, is getting a TV adaptation, as Martin announced on his LiveJournal blog. Universal Cable Productions (UCP) has acquired the TV rights to the Wild Cards series, Martin says, and development will get underway right away.
Melinda M. Snodgrass, who coedited the analogies with Martin and is an accomplished TV writer (including an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation) will serve as executive producer, along with Gregory Noveck. Martin, however, won’t be directly involved with the series, as he stated in the post:
I won't be working on the series myself... my own development deal is exclusive to HBO, and I am writing THE WINDS OF WINTER, as I believe most of you will recall... but I have every confidence in Melinda Snodgrass and Gregory Noveck. They know and love the Wild Cards universe almost as well as I do, and I think they will do a terrific job. Wish them luck.
Should fans of Martin and sci-fi get excited about this? Sure. Yes, it’s an obscure property, but then so was A Song of Ice and Fire before Game of Thrones got off the ground. The expansive source material provides plenty of ideas for the show’s creative team and it’s fair to say that they last time Martin entrusted show-runners to adapt his work, he chose wisely.
Sure, there are unknowns here- no word on casting and we don’t know where and in what form the series will air, as UCP is a production entity and there’s no deal in place for a network to air the series. But since Martin won’t be directly working on the show, don’t expect its existence to cause the release of Winds of Winter to be delayed any longer than it already has been.
We'll bring you more information on Wild Cards as it becomes available.