George R.R. Martin Novella 'Nightflyers' Headed for TV on Syfy

The 'Game of Thrones' creator is teaming with writer Jeff Buhler to develop the drama for the small screen.
Getty Images; Courtesy of St. Martin's Press
George R.R. Martin

Game of Thrones creator George R.R. Martin is expanding his TV footprint.

The author and executive producer of HBO's fantasy drama is teaming with Syfy to adapt his 1980 novella Nightflyers for the small screen, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

Set in the future on the eve of Earth's destruction, a crew of explorers journey on the most advanced ship in the galaxy, The Nightflyer, to intercept a mysterious alien spacecraft that might hold the key to their survival. As the crew nears their destination, they discover that the ship’s artificial intelligence and never-seen captain may be steering them into deadly and unspeakable horrors deep in the dark reaches of space.

Jeff Buhler (Jacob's Ladder) will pen the script and exec produce the Universal Cable Productions project alongside Gene Klein (Suits), David Bartis (Mr. and Mrs. Smith) and Doug Liman (Suits) of Hypnotic; Alison Rosenzweig and Michael Gaeta (Jacob's Ladder) of Gaeta Rosenzweig Films; and Lloyd Ivan Miller and Alice P. Neuhauser of Lloyd Ivan Miller Productions. Robert Jaffe, who penned the 1987 feature film based on Martin's novel, is set as a producer. Martin is not involved, given his overall deal with HBO, where he's currently co-writing two of the four potential Game of Thrones follow-ups that are in the works.

Nightflyers was went on to win Japan's Seiun Award in 1983 for best foreign-language short story of the year. It was published again in 1985 as part of a short-story collection before being adapted for the big screen, where it grossed $1.2 million domestically.

Nightflyers comes as Martin's literary works continue to garner attention following the critical, awards-season and ratings success of HBO's Game of Thrones. Martin's best-selling anthology Wild Cards is also in development at Universal Cable Productions, though a network is not yet attached.

For Syfy, Nightflyers joins a development slate that also includes Brave New World, Hyperion and Stranger in a Strange Land.

Nightflyers was one of three scripted announcements coming from Syfy on Thursday. The NBCUniversal-owned cable network has also picked up two new series: Superman prequel Krypton and comic book adaptation Happy.

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