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Whitley Strieber’s Alien Hunter Adaptation Gets Straight To Series Order From Syfy

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SyfySyfy is going through something of a reinvention. Over the last few years they’ve gone from being an oasis of genre programing to filling their schedule with schlocky, poorly made creature features, reality TV shows, and even professional wrestling, which, though definitely outlandish at times, has little to nothing to do with science fiction. That’s changing, however. The network is making a hard push at getting back in the original sci-fi content game, broadcasting the Canadian hit Continuum, debuting Helix earlier this year, Z Nation just premiered, and they have an insane slate of shows in various stages of development. And now they’re adding one more notable title.

Deadline reports that Syfy has given the alien drama Hunters, which is only a working title at this point, a 13-episode straight-to-series order. Based on Whitley Strieber’s best-selling novel Alien Hunter, also not a particularly good name, the series is also bringing along super producer Gale Anne Hurd (The Walking Dead, Terminator 2, and far too many genre favorites to mention) for the ride. Natalie Chaidez, who worked on Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Heroes, and V, among others, is handling the writing duties and will also help with the executive producing duties. All of that taken together, you understand why the network gave it the go ahead so fast.

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Z Nation Unveils Gloriously Disgusting Zombie Carnage In This New Clip

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It’s got to be frustrating for Syfy and Z Nation‘s producers that people can’t talk about the show without inevitably comparing it to that AMC show…you know the one. (And no, we don’t mean Mad Men, although there are some angry male characters in Z Nation.) The clip above is a good example of how tonally different this show is from The Walking Dead. In the latter show, revealing a splattered zombie in a vehicle’s wheel well would probably be presented with a grandiose air of heaviness and retrospect about what it might have taken for a zombie to get into that situation. In Z Nation, it’s more like, “Whoa, there’s a fucking zombie in this wheel well! Check it out!”

Z Nation, which is produced by the D-grade feature churner The Asylum, takes place three years after a zombie phenomenon has left the bulk of this country’s population dead. (Or undead, depending on how they died.) A military man named Hammond (Harold Perrineau) is transporting a man named Murphy (Keith Allan) from one side of the country to the other, because he alone may have the antidote inside of him that could make people immune to zombie bites. When communication goes down, they end up crossing paths with another group of survivors, led by Charles Garnett (Thomas Everett Scott). His squad includes badass Roberta (Kellita Smith), Mack (Michael Welch), Addy (Anastasia Baranova), and the methy Doc (Russell Hodgkinson).

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Arthur C. Clarke’s Childhood’s End Gets The Greenlight From Syfy

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childhood's endIf science fiction’s most popular writers were still alive today, they’d be pulling in truckloads of money at this point. (Not that some of them weren’t already wealthy, but still.) Syfy is getting into the Arthur C. Clarke business with an official order for the miniseries Childhood’s End, first announced a couple of weeks ago. Is anybody else besides me just waiting for Syfy to announce that of all their recent pickups have been a joke and they’re actually just going to air Scare Tactics and wrestling for 24 hours a day?

Childhood’s End will be presented as a six-part miniseries executive produced by Oscar-winning screenwriter Akiva Goldsman (A Beautiful Mind) and mega-producer Mike De Luca (Dracula Untold). To direct the project, the team nabbed British filmmaker Nick Hurran, arguably most notable around these parts for directing The Day of the Doctor, as well as a few other Doctor Who episodes. He was also recently recognized with an Emmy nomination for his work on Sherlock: The Last Vow. Taking on screenwriting duties is Life on Mars co-creator Matthew Graham.

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The Wil Wheaton Project Won’t Be Returning To Syfy

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wil wheaton projectLove him or hate him, Wil Wheaton is a beacon of light for all things nerd-tastic in the world, with a massive fanbase that would follow him into a sarlacc pit and back. (And if you hate him, you’ve clearly got too much negativity in your blood.) Unfortunately, that fanbase was not enough to convince Syfy execs that another season of The Wil Wheaton Project was worth getting into. Yet Warehouse 13 somehow made it to five seasons. (Not that I’m knocking that series.)

Wheaton announced the news himself via his blog at WilWheaton.net, and he was just as unapologetically thoughtful and kind about everything as one would expect. Maybe a little snarky, but not much, and nowhere near as blatantly rude as I’d have been. Maybe there’s a reason I’m not the former host of anything at this point in my life.

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Homebrewed Zombies Get Love In Syfy’s Town Of The Living Dead Trailer

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Have you ever had a dream that you wanted to turn into reality, no matter what the cost or the amount of work involved? Welcome to the rural town of Jasper, Alabama, where citizens have been working for years trying to get a zombie movie made. Their efforts, headed up by director John M. Ware, are the subject of the upcoming documentary series Town of the Living Dead, which unveiled its first TV trailer last night during Face Off, in anticipation for its premiere on Syfy later this year.

This isn’t a trailer that promotes deep inspection, where secrets and clues are hidden around every corner. Town of the Living Dead is about a bunch of good ole boys and girls getting their gore on, only it’s taken a lot longer than anyone might have expected or hoped for. Ware and his merry band of horror lovers have been trying to get their independent flick Thr33 Days Dead made for six years now, with a production schedule that is guided primarily by people actually showing up to do things. Or not. And Syfy is there to document the fun-filled process, though I’m sure the smiles get turned upside down when problematic obstacles occur.

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Syfy’s Space Thriller The Expanse Casts Its Lead And An Oscar Nominee

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LeviathanWakesOf the laundry list of shows and projects that Syfy is currently developing, the one we’re most excited about has to be The Expanse. The prospect of an adaptation of James S.A. Corey’s Leviathan series is a legitimately exciting one, and while the network’s track record is spotty to say the least, we can’t help but be optimistic about this one. Not only is the story and subject full of potential, but they’re also in the process of putting together a strong cast, including two more new additions.

According to Entertainment Weekly, Shohreh Aghdashloo (X-Men: The Last Stand) and Steven Strait (Magic City) have both signed on for the deep space mystery thriller. They join Thomas Jane (Punisher), who climbed on board early last month. The two newcomers may not be household names, but they bring a lot of clout and prestige. Aghdashloo won an Emmy and has been nominated for an Academy Award, and Strait has been working steadily over the last few years, increasing his profile and strengthening his resume.