After receiving a pilot order in 2017, Damon Lindelof’s Watchmen project has been given a series order at HBO. The series, referred to by Lindelof as a remix of the original story, is expected to premiere in 2019.
Set in an alternate history where “superheroes” are treated as outlaws, Watchmen embraces the nostalgia of the original groundbreaking graphic novel while attempting to break new ground of its own.
Originally published as a 12-issue miniseries beginning in 1986, Watchmen quickly become one of sequential art’s most acclaimed stories. The original story centers on a murder-mystery before unfolding into a planet-altering conspiracy that ultimately asks where the fine line is drawn between heroes and villains.
In a letter to fans, Lindelof made it clear that the Watchmen series won’t be an adaptation of the comics, but an original story with new faces and unknown characters introduced into the universe that he intends to remix.
The pilot is already made up of an ensemble cast that includes Jeremy Irons (Justice League), Regina King (The Leftovers), Don Johnson (Django Unchained), Louis Gossett Jr. (Hap and Leonard), Tim Blake Nelson (Colossal), Adelaide Clemens (Rectify), Andrew Howard (Bates Motel), Frances Fisher (Masters of Sex), Jacob Ming-Trent (White Famous), Yahya Abdul-Mateen II (The Handmaid’s Tale), Sara Vickers (The Crown), and Tom Mison (Sleepy Hollow).
Since the 2009 film adaptation was released, DC Comics released an extensive “Before Watchmen” comic line, telling stories from the pasts of the central characters. More recently, DC Comics has made efforts to integrate Watchmen into the broader DC Multiverse with their Doomsday Clock series.
Lindelof serves as creator, writer, showrunner, and executive producer on the Watchmen series, with Tom Spezialy, Stephen Williams, and Joseph Iberti also executive producing. Nicole Kassell will executive produce and direct the pilot. The series comes from Lindelof’s White Rabbit in association with Warner Bros. Television and is based on the DC Comics characters.