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Syfy Adapting Futuristic Military Drama 'Ghost Brigades' (Exclusive)

"The NeverEnding Story's" Wolfgang Petersen will oversee development on the drama based on John Scalzi's "Old Man's War" book series.

Old Man's War Wolfgang Petersen Inset - P 2014
Tor Science Fiction/AP Images

Syfy is continuing to ramp up its sci-fi fare.

The NBCUniversal-owned cable network has put into development Ghost Brigades, a drama based on John Scalzi's Hugo-nominated Old Man's War universe book series, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

The NeverEnding Story's Wolfgang Petersen will oversee development on the project alongside Scott Stuber (Safe House), with Jake Thornton and Ben Lustig (Winter's Knight) on board to pen the first script. The drama hails from Universal Cable Productions, Petersen's Radiant Productions and Stuber's Bluegrass Films.

STORY Syfy's Plan: More Space Operas, Less 'Sharknado'

Ghost Brigades follows John Perry, who at 75 enlists in the Colonial Defense Force to fight a centuries-long war for man's expansion into the cosmos. Technology allows experiences and consciousness to be transplanted into younger bodies that are outfitted to endure the harsher rigors of war in space. However, soon after John arrives, he finds himself involved with a mysterious woman, and at the same time, at the center of an unraveling conspiracy involving an elite fighting force known as the Ghost Brigades.

Military sci-fi book Old Man's War was first published in 2005 and was nominated for the Hugo Award for best novel in 2006. Paramount Pictures optioned the property with Petersen attached to direct, David Self (Road to Perdition) attached to adapt Scalzi's book and Stuber on board to produce in 2011 but nothing ever came of it.

Ghost Brigades followed in 2006, marking the second in the five-book series that included The Last Colony (2007), Zoe's Tale (2008) and The Human Division (2013), which was published in serial form.

Ghost Brigades comes to Syfy as the cabler has renewed its effort to focus more on sci-fi fare and space tales along the lines of Battlestar Galactica. To that end, the network has added series including Dominion, Ascension, 12 Monkeys, Olympus, The Expanse and zombie entry Z Nation, among others. Syfy also is developing The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman's futuristic comic Clone, Frank Miller's Ronin and Letter 44, as well as The Magicians and more.

Petersen, a two-time Oscar nominee for his work on Das Boot, is repped by Paradigm and Bloom Hergott. Lustig and Thornton are repped by WME and Circle of Confusion.

Email: Lesley.Goldberg@THR.com
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