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Damon Lindelof talks about his plans for the Watchmen TV show and reveals some of the cast

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“Hrm!”

Damon Lindelof (Lost, The Leftovers) is working with HBO on a TV show based on Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ classic Watchmen graphic novel.

Until now there had not been any word on what we could expect from the TV show. Zack Snyder already brought us the big screen adaptation back in 2009 and it wasn’t clear whether the new series would do the same or be set after the events of the film.

Lindelof shared this long letter that goes over what he is planning. It will be set after the events of the original graphic novel, but won’t be a sequel. It will be some kind of remix. What are the odds that Alan Moore will hate it? Then again, he will probably never watch it.

We have no desire to ‘adapt’ the twelve issues Mr. Moore and Mr. Gibbons created thirty years ago. Those issues are sacred ground and will not be retread nor recreated nor reproduced nor rebooted.

They will however be remixed. Because the bass lines in those familiar tracks are just too good and we’d be fools not to sample them. Those original twelve issues are our Old Testament. When the New Testament came along it did not erase what came before it. Creation. The Garden of Eden. Abraham and Isaac. The Flood. It all happened. And so it will be with Watchmen. The Comedian died. Dan and Laurie fell in love. Ozymandias saved the world and Dr. Manhattan left it just after blowing Rorschach to pieces in the bitter cold of Antarctica.

But we are not making a “sequel” either. This story will be set in the world its creators painstakingly built…but in the tradition of the work that inspired it, this new story must be original. It has to vibrate with the seismic unpredictability of its own tectonic plates. It must ask new questions and explore the world through a fresh lens. Most importantly, it must be contemporary. The Old Testament was specific to the Eighties of Reagan and Thatcher and Gorbachev. Ours needs to resonate with the frequency of Trump and May and Putin and the horse that he rides around on, shirtless. And speaking of Horsemen, The End of the World is off the table… which means the heroes and villains–as if the two are distinguishable–are playing for different stakes entirely.

You can read the full letter below and it does show how much Watchmen means to him. I do like how he wrote it in the style of Doctor Manhattan.

Lindelof also shared some details on the cast – Regina King (American Crime, The Leftovers), Don Johnson (Book Club, Django Unchained), Tim Blake Nelson (The Ballad of Buster Scruggs), Louis Gossett Jr. (An Officer and a Gentleman, The Reason), Adelaide Clemens (Rectify, Parade’s End), and Andrew Howard (The Oath, The Brave).

King is said to be starring in the lead role, though the exact details of the characters are being kept under wraps.

New faces. New masks to cover them. And more to come…

A post shared by Damon (@damonlindelof) on

I love the original graphic novel and I enjoyed the film. I am curious to see what happens in this TV show, but the word remix makes me worry about it. We could end up with an absolute mess.

What are your thoughts on how the show is shaping up?

Day 140.

A post shared by Damon (@damonlindelof) on

I already went after the ending of the 2008 film in the podcast I do with Mike Spring. DC Comics have done the same with the Doomsday Clock storyline.

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