Apple adds Isaac Asimov sci-fi series to TV development list

Apple To Adapt Isaac Asimov’s Seminal Sci Fi ‘Foundation’ Book Series For TV

The hardware giant is set to be weighing a straight-to-series order of an adaptation of Isaac Asimov's early and celebrated sci-fi book series Foundation, Deadline reports. The company has not said if it will distribute them through its own iTunes Store, where it sells shows and films by other companies, or on another platform. The project was put together by Skydance Television, who made a deal with the Asimov estimate and put writer/producers David S. Goyer and Josh Friedman on the job of figuring out how to adapt Asimov's influential series.

Originally published as a series of eight short stories in Astounding Magazine beginning in 1942, Foundation offers a complex saga about humans who are scattered on planets throughout the galaxy, living under the rule of the Galactic Empire.

Asimov is one of the titans of 20th-century sci-fi, but the Foundation trilogy doesn't really offer a neat plot for screen adaptation. Goyer and Friedman have been involved with the adaptation since last June, though they are not the first ones to try. Friedman is now working on Avatar 2, while Goyer has written numerous comic book adaptations including Blade, Ghost Rider, the Dark Knight trilogy, Zack Snyder's DC franchise, and the new Superman spinoff Krypton. Previously, experts HBO has made such an attempt, but the series was never taken into production.

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Apple's programming team, led by Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg, has been developing and buying content for its streaming network, including a morning drama starring Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon.

Skydance Television adds Foundation to a series slate that includes Altered Carbon, Grace and Frankie, Condor and the upcoming Jack Ryan and Dietland. Meanwhile, Friedman's upcoming credits include Avatar 2 and the War of the Worlds remake.