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It’s rather en vogue now to take successful films, or even film franchises, and re-imagine them for the small screen. After all, television these days is a truly diverse and wonderful medium with many rich series and big name actors to pull in viewers. Even so, it doesn’t hurt to have a familiar title to entice an audience. So it came as little surprise when SyFy announced the network would be producing a series version of the film 12 Monkeys, a hit from the 1990s starring Bruce Willis as a criminal sent back in time to get information on a deadly viral outbreak that is spreading.
While SyFy and the show’s producers have insisted that the series will in fact be a “re-imagining” of the film and not simply another rehashing of the story, the initial story breakdown sounds awfully similar: Aaron Stanford plays a time-traveler from the future who goes back in time to prevent a plague from spreading. The change, insists co-executive producer Terry Matalas, is in how the show will handle time travel.
“We didn’t want to just re-do the movie,” Matalas told reporters at the SyFy Upfronts. “We changed the rules. In the movie, you can’t change the rules of time. Here, you can.”
Whether or not this reboot of 12 Monkeys will reach television glory a la Fargo or Hannibal is still up in the air. But we will find out when the series premieres in January of 2015 on SyFy.