A pretty robust lineup of writers and producers has coalesced to tackle an adaptation of Liu Cixin’s renowned Chinese sci-fi book The Three-Body Problem and its sequels. Netflix announced today that Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss will write and executive produce an original series based on The Three-Body Problem alongside writer and executive producer Alexander Woo, who served as showrunner on Season 2 of AMC’s The Terror. Also along for the ride are Rian Johnson and Ram Bergman, who will serve as executive producers alongside Rosamund Pike and Robie Uniacke and Plan B Entertainment.
The Three-Body Problem tells the story of humanity’s first contact with an alien civilization. The first book was published in 2014, and Netflix was granted the rights to produce and English-language adaptation with Cixin serving as a consulting producer and Ken Liu, who wrote the English translation, also serving as a consulting producer.
“Liu Cixin’s trilogy is the most ambitious science-fiction series we’ve read,” said Benioff and Weiss in a statement. “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.”
“It’s a privilege to be adapting one of the great masterpieces of Chinese science-fiction,” added Woo. “The Three-Body Problem trilogy combines so many things I love: rich, multi-layered characters and true existential stakes – all told as an elegant and deeply human allegory. I’m thrilled to kick off my partnership with Netflix with this accomplished creative team.”
Bernadette Caulfield, who was an integral part of the Game of Thrones puzzle as on-the-ground producer, will also serve as an EP on The Three-Body Problem and has been newly installed as the president of Benioff and Weiss’ production company.
“David Benioff, D.B. Weiss and Alexander Woo have experience tackling ambitious sagas over time and space. Rian Johnson and Ram Bergman have long dazzled fans with thrilling and mind-bending epics. They are all fierce advocates of The Three-Body Problem,” said Netflix VP of Original Series Peter Friedlander. “As ardent fans, it was especially meaningful to us to get the support of Liu Cixin who created this expansive universe. We all share the same goal: to pay homage to this incredible story and take members on the adventure of a lifetime.”
The press release does not clarify if Weiss, Benioff, and Woo will all serve as showrunners together, or if Woo is showrunning solo. It does note that Weiss and Benioff will serve as writers, so they’re expected to be more involved here than they are on their other previously announced Netflix series The Chair, on which they’re simply serving as executive producers. If they are showrunning The Three-Body Problem, then this is their first full-time TV series since wrapping Game of Thrones.
This project is part of the overall deal that Benioff and Weiss struck with Netflix to produce new original films and TV series, which they moved on to full-time after backing out of their planned Star Wars movie for Lucasfilm.