Sci Fi TV Development: Buckaroo Banzai and Wheel of Time TV Shows, Samurai Jack Return, and More

By | May 23, 2016

News, updates, and (mostly viable) rumors relating to development of science fiction / fantasy television productions. If you have tips or more info on these or other productions, please pass them along in the comments.

The broadcast networks had a ton of announcements for new show pickups for the 2016-17 season heading into last week’s Upfronts (more on that at this link), but there is still plenty of Sci Fi TV development going on beyond that. Here is a rundown of the announcements I have seen from the last few weeks.

buckaroo-banzai-tv-seriesBuckaroo Banzai

Network: No Network Attached

Production Team: Kevin Smith (Executive Producer)

Status: Very Early Development

About: This would be a reboot of Buckaroo Banzai as a television series.

Comments: This is Kevin Smith’s vision of how he would proceed with the series: “Basically you just do the entire movie for season one, then season two you finally do the sequel we’ve all dreamed about, Buckaroo Banzai Against the World Crime League.” MGM is currently shopping this around and it would be 2017 at the earliest before anything were to hit the small screen. Source:

Samurai Jack

Network: Adult Swim

Production Team: Genndy Tartakovsky (Creator / Executive Producer)

Status: In Production (Ordered to Series)

About: This will be a continuation of the original animated series with creator Genndy Tartakovsky running the show. Source: Variety

Comments: This revival had been previously announced and is now officially going forward on Adult Swim.

Heroes and Villains: History of Comics

Network: AMC

Production Team: Robert Kirkman (Executive Producer)

Status: In Production

About: “The series, which hails from Skybound Entertainment, will consist of six hourlong episodes that explore the stories, people, and events that have transformed the world of comic books. From origin stories to the untold history behind iconic characters, ‘Heroes and Villains’ will explore a wide range of topics including pop culture, politics, race, gender and sexuality.” Source: Variety

Comments: This mini-series will likely hit the air at some point in 2017.

wheel-of-time-tv-seriesWheel of Time

Network: No Network Attached

Production Team: TBD

Status: Very Early Development

About: This series will adapt Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time fantasy book series. Source: CBR

Comments: There has been an ongoing attempt to adapt these books to television, but legal issues have held it up. A low budget pilot was produced a few years back by a studio attempting to secure the rights to the property, but this will not be a continuation of that.


Network: Hulu

Production Team: Hank Steinberg (Creator / Executive Producer), Ken Nolan (Creator / Executive Producer)

Status: Pilot Ordered

About: “The epic drama follows a tribe of Neanderthals as they struggle to survive and hold on to their way of life after coming into contact with a family of Homo sapiens, the studio said. At the intersection of evolution and genocide, ‘Dawn’ asks the fundamental question: ‘What does it mean to be human?’” Source: The Wrap

Comments: The streaming service will likely be considering adding this to their 2017 original programming.

Untitled Seth MacFarlane Comedy

Network: FOX

Production Team: Seth MacFarlane (Creator / Producer)

Status: Early Production (Ordered to Series)

About: “‘A comedy drama’ set 300 years in the future. It will center on the crew of a space exploratory ship named Orville that ‘faces cosmic dramas’ as they go ‘where no comedy drama has gone before.'” Source:

Comments: FOX is looking at adding this to their 2017-18 schedule.

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