Sony has thrown down the guantlet, committing to produce Robert Jordan's hugely popular and expansive fantasy series, "The Wheel of Time", in partnership with Red Eagle Entertainment and Radar Pictures.
Variety reports that Rafe Judkins (Agents of Shield, Hemlock Grove) will write and executive produce. Jordan's widow Harriet McDougal is along to serve as consulting producer.
There are 14 novels in the "Wheel of Time" book series, starting with "The Eye of the World" in 1990 and concluding with 2013's a "A Memory of Light," which Brandon Sanderson wrote following Jordan's death. "The Wheel of time" is the latest high fantasy series tapped for TV production following the success of HBO's Game of Thrones. Patrick Rothfuss' "King Killer" series is at Lionsgate while Brandon Sanderson's "Stormlight Archive" is also in development.
I guess the race is on to see which hits the market first. News that the show is moving ahead may come as a shock to anyone following the storied history of Red Eagle Entertainment's fight to get the series made. In 2015, the company even went so far as to produce a "pilot" called "Winter Dragon" which they paid FXX to air at 1:30 a.m. in early February of that year.
After much speculation from fans, it turned out that Red Eagle were contractually required to "air" a pilot by a certain date or lose their option to produce the material. While the pilot, starring Max Ryan and Billy Zane, remains an entertainment oddity, it goes to show how serious those involved were in getting the idea to series.
You can watch that pilot below.