Another major announcement from Syfy this week was that the network will develop Frederik Pohl’s Hugo and Nebula Award-winning novel Gateway about humanity’s encounter with a mysterious, ancient alien civilization as a one-hour scripted series with Entertainment One Television (eOne) and Universal Cable Productions (UCP). eOne will distribute the series worldwide.
David Eick (Battlestar Galactica) and Josh Pate (Falling Skies) collaborated on the adaptation and will serve as executive producers on the series. Eick will revise a pilot script written by Pate and serve as showrunner. The series will also be executive produced by Martha De Laurentiis through the De Laurentiis Company, former eOne Television executive Michael Rosenberg, and Lorenzo De Maio. eOne Television’s Gerard Bocaccio, SVP US Scripted Development, will oversee the project for the studio.
In Gateway, humanity discovers an asteroid teeming with the long abandoned spaceships of an advanced alien race — the Heechee – setting in motion a gold rush for alien artifacts and technology. The ships are preprogrammed, transporting their voyagers to distant worlds of riches — or certain death. Undaunted by the peril or the odds, prospector Robinette Broadhead gambles everything on a journey to Gateway. After one nightmare mission, he returns to extraordinary wealth and luxury, but is haunted by the loss of his crewmates, including the love of his life.
Said Bill McGoldrick, Executive Vice President, Original Content, Syfy: “We’re delighted to develop this fascinating First Contact story with long-time partners Universal Cable Productions and Entertainment One. Gateway is thought-provoking and unsettling, raising profound questions about mankind’s possible relationship with alien life.”
“David and Josh are masters of telling authentic, multidimensional stories set in wholly unfamiliar worlds, and we are thrilled to collaborate with them and Syfy to translate Frederik’s beloved and timeless adventure saga into an equally exhilarating television series,” said Pancho Mansfield, President of Global Scripted Programming, eOne Television.
“Gateway is a science-fiction marvel weaving a great story of humanity and love,” said Dawn Olmstead, Executive Vice President, Development at Universal Cable Productions. “We’re excited to realize Frederik Pohl’s vision and bring it to life for Syfy- the ideal home for this compelling classic.”
First published in 1977 by St. Martin’s Press, Gateway is a celebrated science fiction book that has won top writing awards including the Hugo Award® for Best Novel, the Nebula Award® for Best Novel, the Locus Award® for Best Novel and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award® for Best Science Fiction Novel, among others.
Eick was most recently the Executive Producer on TNT’s Falling Skies. Prior to that he had been best known for having developed and Executive Produced the Battlestar Galactica, including the spinoff Caprica. Originally a “re-imagining” of the 1978 series of the same name, Battlestar Galactica ran four seasons, earning numerous awards including 18 Emmy nominations, 4 Emmy wins, the Saturn Award for excellence in science fiction and the coveted Peabody Award recognizing “distinguished achievement and meritorious service”. The show also won the AFI Award in 2005 and 2006 for its “contribution to America’s cultural legacy”, and was honored in 2009 by the United Nations. In 2013, the Writers Guild of America recognized Battlestar on its list of The 101 Best-Written Television Series of All Time.
Pate launched his career co-writing the feature film The Grave with his brother Jonas, and more recently created ABC’s upcoming drama series Blood and Oil. Prior to his work on Falling Skies on which he collaborated with Eick, Pate created the one-hour series Surface for NBC and Good vs. Evil for USA Network.