After a bidding war among the networks, including Netflix, for Joss Whedon‘s latest project, it looks like The Nevers has landed at HBO with a straight-to-series order. According to THR, the Victorian series will mix in elements of sci-fi as it follows a group of women who begin to develop powers, and soon use them to try to save the world from a host of relentless enemies. Yep, pretty much sounds on-brand for Whedon.
In a statement, Whedon said that “I honestly couldn’t be more excited. The Nevers is maybe the most ambitious narrative I’ve created, and I can’t imagine a better home for it than HBO. Not only are they the masters of cinematic longform, but their instant understanding of my odd, intimate epic was as emotional as it was incisive. It’s been too long since I created an entirely new fictional world, and the HBO team offer not just scope and experience, not just ‘prestige,’ but a passionate collaboration. I could go on, but — I’m impatiently grateful to say — I have work to do.”
HBO programming president Casey Bloys added, “We have long been fans of the incredibly talented and prolific Joss Whedon and we can’t think of a better project than The Nevers with which to welcome him to the HBO family. We look forward to meeting the strange, multifaceted characters of The Nevers, to learn their stories, see them in action and share them with our viewers. We’re honored that Joss chose HBO as the place to build his ambitious new world and we are excited to get started.”
The Nevers will mark Whedon’s first return to television since creating Dollhouse for Fox. In more recent news, though, he exited the Batgirl movie, and courted controversy after his ex-wife wrote a scathing editorial about the hypocrisy of his supposed feminism.
As for HBO, the premium network has a number of high-profile series now on its docket, including Damon Lindelof‘s Watchmen, as well as J.J. Abrams‘ Demimonde, perhaps embracing more fantasy and fandom-focused series in the wake of Game of Thrones‘ major success. That may not be good enough for new owners AT&T, though, who are looking to drastically increase HBO’s volume of series in the coming years, as Warner Media CEO John Stankey has invoked the Netflix model as something to emulate. For better or worse, it’s worth noting that this year Netflix broke HBO’s long record of having the most Emmy nominations.