The Three-Body Problem: Game of Thrones Writers Adapt Sci-Fi Novel for Netflix

David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are set to adapt the sprawling sci-fi epic.

By Drew Dietsch | Published

This article is more than 2 years old

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The Three-Body Problem has been announced as the new project from Game of Thrones writers and showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss. It is based on a Chinese science fiction novel by author Liu Cixin, the first in a trilogy of novels known as the Remembrance of Earth’s Past saga. The series will be produced by Netflix and will likely be positioned as one of their prestige shows.

According to the official synopsis, The Three-Body Problem is an alternate history novel that is set during China’s Cultural Revolution. “A secret military project sends signals into space to establish contact with aliens. An alien civilization on the brink of destruction captures the signal and plans to invade Earth. Meanwhile, on Earth, different camps start forming, planning to either welcome the superior beings and help them take over a world seen as corrupt, or to fight against the invasion.”

Benioff and Weiss are coming off a highly divisive finale with Game of Thrones and they have shouldered a lot of the show’s criticism. That may have been a factor in their Star Wars movie getting canceled. They also had planned to make an alternate history show on HBO called Confederate where the Union lost the Civil War. That was rightly considered ill-advised and got scrapped. The Three-Body Problem is going to act as something of a redemption piece for these two creatives. Hopefully, they can pull off a win since they desperately need it.

The two writers commented on their involvement with The Three-Body Problem in a joint statement:

“Liu Cixin’s trilogy is the most ambitious science-fiction series we’ve read, taking readers on a journey from the 1960s until the end of time, from life on our pale blue dot to the distant fringes of the universe. We look forward to spending the next years of our lives bringing this to life for audiences around the world.”

The series has some real luminaries attached to it as executive producers. Rian Johnson, Rosamund Pike, and Brad Pitt all have credits on The Three-Body Problem. That goes to show just how seriously Netflix is taking this project. With the story also being a Chinese-based drama, it is likely that Netflix is hoping to capture both domestic and international audiences with this show.

The Three-Body Problem

It is unclear right now if The Three-Body Problem will only be covering the first novel in its inaugural season. It does seem like author Liu Cixin feels very positive about the adaptation moving forward. He was quoted about his enthusiasm for the project:

“I have the greatest respect for and faith in the creative team adapting The Three-Body Problem for television audiences,” Cixin said. “I set out to tell a story that transcends time and the confines of nations, cultures and races; one that compels us to consider the fate of humankind as a whole. It is a great honor as an author to see this unique sci-fi concept travel and gain fandom across the globe and I am excited for new and existing fans all over the world to discover the story on Netflix.”

No release date is set yet for The Three-Body Problem. Once we hear any more news about this ambitious science fiction project, we will be sure to update you.