Producer Damon Lindelof has been developing a new TV series based on Alan Moore’s iconic comic “Watchmen” for HBO for the past few months and is currently at work on the show’s pilot.
Now, in a new five-page letter he posted on social media today, he confirms this will not be a direct adaptation of the original comic but rather a new story set in the same world. In the lengthy letter, he goes on to explain why they made that choice. Here’s a sample:
“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.
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. The series isn’t expected to hit the airwaves until late 2019 at the earliest.