Halo's TV adaptation has been handed a tentative early 2022 release date after years spent in development hell.
A Deadline report revealed that the show, which is currently filming in Budapest, Hungary, should arrive early next year. Deadline also confirmed that Paramount Plus will be the new exclusive home for the Halo TV series, instead of Showtime as previously announced – which was later confirmed by the streaming service. Showtime will still produce the upcoming series alongside Halo developer 343 Industries and Steven Spielberg's Amblin Television production company.
The show's new details were unveiled during ViacomCBS' Streaming Event on Wednesday afternoon. Elaborating on the themes at the heart of the series, Showtime Networks CEO David Nevins explained that the TV show would chart a similar path to the human or machine discussion that Halo 4 explored with Master Chief.
“It delivers the visceral excitement of playing the game, along with a much deeper emotional experience around the Spartans, human beings who got their humanity chemically and genetically altered,” Nevins said. “The story is about reclaiming what makes them human, and therefore it’s a very powerful story.”
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What is the Halo TV series about?
Plot details remain scarce, so it's unclear how and when the Halo TV series will fit into the wider universe, but it's been suggested that we're going to see an original story involving Master Chief during the Human-Covenant War. There are still elements of this long-running conflict that are yet to be covered, so it would be intriguing to see which decade or time period is selected as the backdrop to the show.
What we do know is that some familiar faces will be making the jump from the videogame franchise to the TV series. Pablo Schreiber (The Wire, Defending Jacob) will star as Master Chief, with Cortana voice actor Jen Taylor set to reprise her role as John-117's faithful AI companion.
Additionally, Danny Sapani (Harlots, Black Panther) and Olive Gray (Save Me) have been cast as Jacob and Miranda Keyes respectively, while Bokeem Woodbine (Queen and Slim, Fargo) will feature as Spartan-II super soldier Soren-066. Shabana Azmi (24, Godmother) is set to play Admiral Parangovsky, Commander-in-Chief of the Office for Naval Intelligence between 2511 and 2555, and Natasha McElhone (Designated Survivor, Solaris) will portray Dr. Catherine Halsey.
Halo's TV series has been in development since 2013, but multiple setbacks have hampered its progress. Now, though, its production appears to be going much more smoothly, with showrunners Kyle Killen and Steven Kane back by a strong directorial contingent including Otto Bathurst and Jonathan Liebesman.
Around 60% of the series had been filmed prior to production being shut down last March due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and the rest of the shoot is expected to occur in Ontario, Canada. The show's nine-episode first season should arrive in early 2022.