'Warhammer 40,000' empire expands into TV through 'Man in the High Castle' creator

The 'Eisenhorn' series will be based upon Dan Abnett's novels

Epic-scale sci-fi franchise "Warhammer 40,000" will be turned into a live-action TV series by the creator of Amazon's Philip K. Dick adaptation, "Man in the High Castle."

Sci-fi franchise "Warhammer 40,000" is moving into the realm of live-action TV.

- Three decades of galactic empire-building -

It's the latest step in a three-decade lifespan that has seen the imaginative tabletop miniatures wargame expand into a reading room's worth of short story collections, novelizations and comic books, accompanied by numerous video games oriented around aspects of battlefield strategy, squad control, and close quarters combat against various alien species.

Though intended as a cautionary fiction in which the human faction's fanatical devotion to imperialistic strength relies upon a hypocritical, unwavering loyalty to its feeble and virtually lifeless husk of an Emperor, "Warhammer 40,000"'s top-layer focus on constant war instead of inter-species collaboration, viciousness rather than compassion in strength, and the effects of a hyperfocused, cruel, authoritarian despotism has nonetheless been favorably received by some sections of its fanbase.

Yet with "The Man in the High Castle" creator Frank Spotnitz overseeing production on "Eisenhorn," it would appear that both the form and original function of the "Warhammer 40,000" vision will be preserved; his dramatic Philip K. Dick adaptation was about a resistance movement's progress in overthrowing its facist government.

- A conspiratorial thriller -

"Eisenhorn" follows an Inquisitor and his team whose jobs are to investigate various conspiratorial plots hatched by traitors, alien factions, and corrupted agents of evil, with the aim of bringing humanity closer to extinction.

The series is based on the novels by Dan Abnett, who is also involved in the show.

Though on the one hand Eisenhorn is "a destroyer of daemons and a purger of heretics, implacable, powerful and dedicated," Abnett said in a statement, "he is not the simple, ruthless hero he appears to be. His battle with the Warp leads him into dark places and forces him to question his duty, his understanding of the Imperium, and his own identity."

Similarly, Spotnitz praised "Warhammer 40,000" for its "rich and complex lore, with a myriad of traditions and stories that have accumulated over time in this thrilling and complex world," describing it as "one of the most exciting properties to adapt for television audiences and the franchise's loyal global fanbase" and anticipating "nothing else like it on television."

Official franchise fan site Warhammer Community advises that "Eisenhorn" is a few years out from its eventual debut.