Whether it’s “The Matrix” or “V for Vendetta,” the Wachowskis have been known for bringing heart-stopping science-fiction to the big screen. Now they’re trying something different — television.
Andy and Lana Wachowski have teamed up with “Babylon 5” creator J. Michael Straczynski to create “Sense8,” a 10-episode sci-fi drama for Netflix. Yes, Netflix.
The media distributor, who has already stuck its toe in the television production waters with the Kevin Spacey political drama “House of Cards,” hope they can really keep the original programming going with “Sense8.” Not much is known about the story, except that it features technology that “simultaneously unites and divides us,” a paradox that makes “Sense8” what it is, according to the Wachowskis.
The series is expected to make its debut on Netflix in 2014, continuing the model the company has borrowed from premium cable channels like HBO. That channel was known for its early life as a place where movies can be found on cable. Then, in the 1990s, HBO took a bold step and started creating original series, which is now some of the most critically acclaimed on television, all used to draw in more subscribers.
While Netflix isn’t necessarily on television, its streaming on-demand service boasts millions of subscribers by itself, and the company has not been shy in spending money to bring in big-name writers, producers and actors to make its original programming lineup shine.
The Wachowskis wrote last year’s “Cloud Atlas,” the sibling’s first writing project since the flop “Speed Racer” in 2008. They are currently writing and directing the film “Jupiter Ascending” with Channing Tatum, Sean Bean and Mila Kunis. Warner Bros. is set to release that film in July 2014.
Straczynski wrote the story behind the hit 2011 film “Thor” and also penned the historical drama “The Flickering Light,” which he is also set to direct later this year.
Casting has not yet begun for “Sense8,” but filming is expected to start by the end of the year, likely when the Wachowskis finish work on “Jupiter Ascending.”