Titled Demimonde, the project is as an epic and intimate sci-fi fantasy drama. Source previously have described it as centered around a world’s battle against a monstrous, oppressive force.
Abrams is executive producing with Bad Robot’s Ben Stephenson. The project is expected to bring in a showrunner.
The Demimonde script received a lot of interest in the premium marketplace when it was taken out earlier this month. Apple reportedly made a strong bid for the project though HBO had been considered a frontrunner from the start given Abrams’ existing relationship there. This will be Bad Robot’s third series on HBO, joining Westworld and the upcoming Lovecraft Country. The company also has had a couple of other projects in development at the premium cable network, which is in the same Time Warner corporate family as Warner Bros. TV, including space drama Glare.
HBO was able to successfully launch another ambitious Bad Robot sci-fi series, Westworld, to both strong ratings and critical acclaim, despite bumps during production, including a monthlong unplanned hiatus.
This is the first series solely created by Abrams since the 2001 ABC drama Alias. The last series he co-created was Fox’s Fringe, which premiered in 2008.
Demimonde, French for “half-world,”comes from Alexandre Dumas’ Le Demi-Monde and refers to “a distinct circle or world that is often an isolated part of a larger world” or “the world of prostitution.”
In addition to Westworld, which is returning for a second season, and Lovecraft Country with Jordan Peele executive producing, Bad Robot has psychological-horror drama series Castle Rock coming up Hulu, which Abrams executive produces with Stephen King.
On the feature side, Abrams, who wrote, produced and directed Star Wars: The Force Awakens, is next writing and directing Star Wars: Episode IX.