Damon Lindelof has long been better suited for TV than movies, so it’s good to see that he’s making his way back to the small screen with the new series The Leftovers. Lindelof will serve as the series’ showrunner and producer, and premium cable network HBO has ordered 10 episodes of the show.
According to the press release, HBO will be adding The Leftovers to its roster of genre TV. The Leftovers starts three years after the Biblical Rapture, which lifted a majority of the population into Heaven. The series will follow Kevin Garvey, the mayor of the suburb of Mapleton, and his family as they try to deal with life after the Rapture, with cults and false prophets emerging and those left behind just trying to get by in their new lives. The series is based on Tom Perrotta’s (Little Children, The Abstinence Teacher) best-selling novel of the same name.
While it’s good to see Damon Lindelof return to TV after running Lost for six years, it will be interesting to see how religious-based material will be handled. I’m really hoping this material takes a secular and humanist approach to the religious reaping, because I can also see religious nuts coming out of the woodwork either to denounce or praise The Leftovers for its view of the Rapture. “The fact that there’s this reaping which occurred, and you don’t make the cut, some of us don’t feel worthy, seemed very ripe territory for a cool character drama,” says Lindelof of the new series.
The Leftovers can be added to the many post-apocalyptic films and TV shows currently being devoured by pop culture enthusiasts. The Leftovers is actually the third (that I can think of) recent film or TV show based on the Rapture, alongside This Is the End and Rapture-Palooza, starring Craig Robinson, John Francis Daley, and the always-adorable Anna Kendrick.
The Leftovers will feature actors Justin Theroux, Amy Brenneman, Christopher Eccleston, Liv Tyler, Chris Zylka, Margaret Qualley, Carrie Coon, Emily Meade, Amanda Warren, Ann Dowd, Michael Gaston, Max Carver, Charlie Carver, Annie Q, Paterson Joseph and Brad Leland. Lindelof and Tom Perrotta wrote the pilot episode, while Peter Berg (Battleship, Hancock) will direct. HBO has yet announced a release date for The Leftovers, but it will most likely air sometime in 2014.
Lindelof left TV in 2010 to work on films such as Star Trek Into Darkness, Cowboys & Aliens, and Prometheus. Brad Pitt brought in Lindelof and writer Drew Goddard to rework the final act of the zombie apocalypse film World War Z. The changes Lindelof and Goddard made to the zombie film ultimately paid off with over half a billion dollars in box office cash worldwide, so maybe that will help make up for his work on Prometheus, which was balked by fans of the Alien film series.
Lindelof is currently working on Disney’s Tomorrowland for director Brad Bird. Disney recently released a new logo for the sci-fi family film, which stars George Clooney, Britt Robertson, Hugh Laurie, Judy Greer, and Raffey Cassidy as Athena the robot.