Seth MacFarlane parted ways with 20th Television earlier this year for a lucrative $200 million overall deal at NBCUniversal, and his first project at his new home is a little unexpected – an epic war drama based on a series of historical novels. MacFarlane will adapt Pulitzer Prize-winning author Herman Wouk’s World War II novels The Winds of War and War and Remembrance as a limited series for Universal Content Productions, who intends to shop the project to cable, network, and streaming platforms.
As reported by THR, MacFarlane will co-write and executive produce The Winds of War alongside The Alienist’s Seth Fisher. The story follows fictional Navy Commander Victor “Pug” Henry and his family through the events of World War II, with Pug himself personally interacting with real-life figures like Franklin D. Roosevelt and Adolf Hitler.
“I can’t think of a more exciting project with which to launch my creative partnership with UCP than Herman Wouk’s The Winds of War,” MacFarlane said. “I’ve been a devoted fan of Wouk’s WWII epic for decades, and its depiction of small-scale human endurance in the face of large-scale global upheaval has never been more relevant than it is today. In my very first meeting with [UCP president] Dawn Olmstead, we connected over this project — I learned that she herself comes from a Naval family — and to bring it to fruition under her stewardship and that of her UCP team will be a perfect fit for all. We can’t wait to get started.”
The Winds of War was famously adapted for television once before, by ABC back in 1983 with Robert Mitchum.as Pug. The 15-hour epic was nominated for 11 Emmys and was the most-watched miniseries ever made at the time, so MacFarlane has some pretty big shoes to fill.