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Making sure it has a well-rounded lineup of original TV shows, Netflix is working with Matrix creators the Wachowskis and Babylon 5 creator J. Michael Straczynski on a new sci-fi drama called Sense8, the company announced today.
The show is described as “a gripping global tale of minds linked and souls hunted,” which is pretty vague, but I’m sure more details will surface in the coming months, as is the case with most sci-fi projects. The show’s first season will run 10 episodes and is tentatively scheduled to make its debut sometime in 2014, according to Netflix.
“Andy and Lana Wachowski and Joe Straczynski are among the most imaginative writers and gifted visual storytellers of our time,” said Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos in a statement. “Their incredible creations are favorites of Netflix members globally and we can’t wait to bring Sense8 to life.”
Jumping into sci-fi is an insanely smart move for Netflix, and if the new show is good, it could end up securing subscriber numbers on a long-term basis. (Seriously, I know people who would gladly pay $8 per month just for another 10 episodes of Firefly.)
And judging from the creators, there’s every indication Sense8 will be good. The Wachowskis are wildly talented film makers with the Matrix Trilogy, Cloud Atlas, and V For Vendetta under their belts. And Straczynski is a fan favorite in the comic book and TV world. He’s also uniquely qualified to run a show that’s tailored for a premium service like Netflix. His first big hit was Babylon 5, a political sci-fi show similar in scope to Star Trek that initially aired on Showtime.
Netflix has already seen success with its original political drama House of Cards and is set to debut a handful of other original shows this year, including a new season of Arrested Development, Eli Roth’s Hemlock Grove, Weeds creator Jenji Kohan’s Orange Is the New Black, and Dreamworks children’s show Turbo F.A.S.T.
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