Channel 4 has hired the services of Bryan Cranston to make his first major TV series since Breaking Bad.
He will star in Electric Dreams: The World of Philip K Dick, a ten-part series based on the short stories written by the award-winning sci-fi novelist.
The show will be written and executive produced by Ronald D. Moore (Battlestar Galactica, Outlander) and Michael Dinner (Justified, Masters of Sex), with Cranston both executive producing and appearing in the drama.
Each episode will be a standalone drama adapted by a team of British and American writers. The series will both “illustrate Dick’s prophetic vision and celebrate the enduring appeal of the prized sci-fi novelist’s work” according to C4.
The series will premiere on Channel 4 in the UK and will be distributed internationally by Sony Pictures Television.
Cranston said: “This is an electric dream come true. We are so thrilled to be able to explore and expand upon the evergreen themes found in the incredible work of this literary master.”
Ronald D. Moore added: “As a long-time fan of Philip K. Dick’s work, it’s a tremendous honour and thrill to be part of this series. His short stories are a treasure-trove of material for artists to draw from and I think this will be a very exciting project.”
Channel 4 Chief Creative Officer Jay Hunt launched the drama today at C4’s launch of its annual report.
Hunt and C4’s chief executive David Abraham said that the commission demonstrated C4’s international appeal – a clear rebuff to the the Government which is citing the broadcaster’s lack of global reach as a reason to consider privatising it and thereby attracting greater international investment from potential buyers.
Currently Channel 4 is a not-for-profit publisher broadcaster which ploughs the profits back from its broadcasting business to new programming and is not required to deliver dividends to shareholders.
Abraham said that the station had enormous global appeal and that billboards for its high-profile shows like Aliens and Catastrophe were “on view” in the US “all year round”.
Hunt said of the new commission: “Philip K. Dick’s short stories have shaped iconic Hollywood films from Blade Runner to Minority Report. Electric Dreams: The World of Philip K Dick will adapt and modernise his singular vision for a TV audience. We are thrilled to be partnering with the talented team at Sony Pictures Television on an anthology series that brings together global stars of the calibre of Bryan Cranston and Ronald D. Moore.”