‘Game of Thrones’ author George R R Martin has announced that his series of graphic science fiction novels Wild Cards is being adapted for television by NBC Universal. Martin edits the anthologies alongside Melinda M. Snodgrass and the seres has had contributions from over 30 authors since it began in 1987.

George R R MartinGeorge R R Martin has a new TV series in development

Announcing the news on his website, Martin said that development will begin immediately and he hopes this will be just the first of several interlocking series. However he will not be working on the series himself, due to his exclusive development deal with ‘Game of Thrones’ network HBO.

Instead his Wild Cards assistant editor and writer Melinda Snodgrass will work on the series, alongside former DC Comics and Syfy Films writer and producer Gregory Noveck. “I have every confidence in Melinda Snodgrass and Gregory Noveck,” Martin said. “They know and love the Wild Cards universe almost as well as I do, and I think they will do a terrific job.”

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Explaining the premise behind the series, the author wrote: “The shared world of the Wild Cards diverged from our own on September 15, 1946 when an alien virus was released in the skies over Manhattan, and spread across an unsuspecting Earth.

“Of those infected, 90% died horribly, drawing the black queen, 9% were twisted and deformed into jokers, while a lucky 1% became blessed with extraordinary and unpredictable powers and became aces. The world was never the same.”

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He also teased that the Wild Cards universe is vast enough to rival that of Marvel and DC. “Wild Cards is a series of books, graphic novels, games, but most of all it is a universe,” he explained. “As large and diverse and exciting as the comic book universes of Marvel and DC (though somewhat grittier, and considerably more realistic and more consistent).

“With an enormous cast of characters both major and minor. There are thousands of stories to be told in the world of the Wild Cards, and Gregory and Melinda and UPC hope to be able to tell many of them.” Martin is currently finishing writing the next instalment in the ‘A Song of Ice and Fire’ series, ‘The Winds of Winter’.