Hulu has picked up a pair of dramas to series: Marvel’s Runaways, from Gossip Girl creators Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage, and The First (working title), about the first human mission to Mars, created and written by House Of Cards creator Beau Willimon. Marvel’s Runaways was originally ordered to pilot with backup scripts, while The First is a straight-to-series order.
The streaming service made the announcements today at its upfront session in Manhattan.
Marvel’s Runaways, based on the comics created by Brian K. Vaughan and Adrian Alphona, is the story of six diverse teenagers who can barely stand one another but who must unite against a common foe: their parents. It stars Rhenzy Feliz as Alex Wilder, a loud-and-proud nerd who spends much of his free time playing video games; Lyrica Okano as Nico Minoru, a tough, angst-ridden budding Wiccan; Virginia Gardner as Karolina Dean, who, underneath her veneer of privilege and perfection, is experiencing a newfound eagerness to explore her identity; Ariela Barer as Gert Yorkes, a purple-haired, riot grrrl; Gregg Sulkin as Chase Stein, a high school heartthrob many write off as a dumb jock but who exhibits flashes of untapped brilliance in engineering; and Allegra Acosta as the eternally peppy Molly Hernandez, the youngest and most innocent of the group. Read more details of the lead characters here.
A co-production with ABC Signature Studios. Marvel’s Runaways is executive produced by Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage Gossip Girl via Fake Empire, along with Marvel Head of Television Jeph Loeb and Jim Chory. Fake Empire’s head of TV Lis Rowinksi will be co-executive producer .
The First, executive produced by Beau Willimon and his producing partner Jordan Tappis, explores the challenges of taking the first steps toward interplanetary colonization in the near future.
“It’s a story about the human spirit,” said Willimon. “About our indomitable need to reach for unknown horizons. About people working toward the greatest pioneering achievement in human history. And about the cost of that vision, the danger and sacrifice – emotional, psychological, and physical – that’s required to achieve it. How ordinary, imperfect people band together and overcome a myriad of obstacles to grasp the extraordinary.”
The series will go into production later this year for a premiere on Hulu in 2018. It will be owned and produced by Westward Productions, founded by Willimon and Tappis, and co-financed by Hulu, Channel 4 and IMG.
Erik Pedersen contributed to this report.