Paramount+ has released the first official trailer for its Halo TV series yesterday, giving fans of the game franchise a lot to chew on.
Visually, the on-screen adaptation seems to have seamlessly captured the game’s signature look, but narratively, this new footage hints at a very different look. Halo. Already, fans have been quick to point out that the show’s main plot points have been given all-new stories: the titular origins. Halo and Master Chief’s identity are now being reimagined, and other elements from the games’ stories are being mixed and matched for the new spectacle.
In this take on Halo, Master Chief (voiced by Pablo Schreiber) is billed as the ultimate creation of Dr. Halsey (Natascha McElhone) – a Spartan super soldier believed to be humanity’s best means of protection against a malevolent species of invading aliens known as the of Covenant. “He’s deadly, scalable, and most importantly, controllable,” Dr. Halsey intones as the trailer displays kinetic cuts of Master Chief in battle. (This “controllable” part will be challenged as the series unfolds, when Master Chief’s underlying emotions are unlocked by the discovery of a mysterious glowing object.)
Alongside Schreiber and McElhone are Jen Taylor as Cortana; Shabana Azmi as Admiral Margaret Parangosky; Bokeem Woodbine as Soren-066; Charlie Murphy as Makee; Kate Kennedy as Kai-125; Natasha Culzac as Rice-028; Bentley Kalu as Vannak-134; olive gray; Yerin Ha; and Danny Sapani. Ryan McParland, Burn Gorman and Fiona O’Shaughnessy also join the cast as original characters.
Visual effects, so essential to Halowere made by Cinesite (VFX supervisor Sean Stranks), Mr. X (VFX supervisor Craig Calvert), MPC Episodic, Pixomondo, Rocket Science VFX (VFX supervisor Greg Behrens) and Rodeo FX.
The show is produced by Showtime, Halo video game developer 343 Industries and Amblin Television. Steven Kane executive produces alongside Steven Spielberg, Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey for Amblin. Otto Bathurst and Toby Leslie serve as executive producers of One Big Picture, with Bathurst directing several episodes; Kyle Killen and Scott Pennington are executive producers of Chapter Eleven; Kiki Wolfkill, Frank O’Connor and Bonnie Ross are the executive producers of 343 Industries. The series is distributed internationally by ViacomCBS Global Distribution Group.
Halo will run for 10 episodes, with the first premiering March 24, 2022.
Max Weinstein is a Los Angeles-based writer and editor. He is the editor of “Dread Central” and former editorial director of “MovieMaker”. His work has been featured in “Cineaste”, “Fangoria”, “Playboy”, “Vice” and “The Week”.