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An Alice In Wonderland TV Show Is Happening With A Watchmen Writer

Alice: Madness Returns video game teaser screenshot.
(Image credit: Electronic Arts)

It’s time to head to Wonderland, or at least it will be in the relatively near future. X-Men and Watchmen co-screenwriter David Hayter is developing a new TV adaptation of the beloved tale, only it's not exactly based on the literary source material, but rather Electronic Arts action adventure game American McGee’s Alice. Don't expect to see Johnny Depp's Mad Hatter in this one.

The series, in partnership with Abandon Entertainment, comes from the beloved and highly acclaimed American McGee’s Alice game franchise, and both Alice and Alice: Madness Returns are on the adaptation table, according to THR. Both games were designed by American James McGee, who'd previously worked on other celebrated hits such as Doom II and Quake, and they're based on the 1865 children’s novel Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and 1871’s Through the Looking-Glass by Lewis Carroll, though with darker underpinnings.

First released as a PC game in late 2000, American McGee’s Alice is a third-person action adventure video game that offers a gloomy and violent take on the beloved novels. It follows Alice after her family is killed in a house fire, where she is put in a psychiatric clinic, and due to the emotional trauma she suffered, Alice journeys to Wonderland. The upcoming series will center on a similar plot, with Alice needing to get better mentally in order to not only solve her parents’ death, but to save Wonderland from falling victim to a gory takeover.

There is currently no other concrete news available about the TV adaptation. As of now, the show hasn't yet found a home platform, and hasn't yet begun the casting process. So even though it’s in development, it’s technically possible it won’t be greenlighted to series before all is said and done. But it's still early, so it may be a while before we hear about any next steps from any hookah-smoking insects.

David Hayter has enjoyed an extensive career in the world of entertainment, from acting to screenwriting to directing and producing. He’s lent his voice to numerous anime projects for the English dubbing and even voices King Shark on The CW’s The Flash. He wrote the screenplay for X-Men and X2, as well as Wolves with Jason Momoa, and an upcoming Voltron live-action film, not to mention his work on Zack Snyder's ending-changing Watchmen adaptation.

It’s interesting to note that this newly announced TV project is not the only adaptation for Alice that was put into development. In 2000, even before the first game’s release, a film version was actually in the works from Dimension Films, with Wes Craven and John August set as director and writer, respectively. The film was going to be a computer-animated feature with a 2003 release, with names such as Natalie Portman and Milla Jovovich in talks for the lead. But with studio moves, actor switches and changes in licensing rights over the years, production was put on pause and hadn't since restarted.

The EA title is only the latest in a long line of games getting adaptations across screens both big and small. Paramount+ just dropped the trailer for its highly anticipated Halo series, based on the popular action game franchise (with company Bungie now set to be bought up by Sony), while Tom Holland and Mark Wahlberg are gearing up to star in the new Uncharted movie. One of The Rock's upcoming movies is also set to be a major video game flick, with details reportedly set to be announced later this year. Game adaptations are extraordinarily hit or miss, so let’s hope that American McGee’s Alice falls on the "hit" side of things, because it definitely sounds intriguing!

With Watchmen and X-Men writer David Hayter at the helm of American McGee’s Alice, it’d be surprising if it isn’t acquired by a platform sooner rather than later. Fingers crossed that it goes to series and that this adaptation isn't ruined, but in the meantime, check out CinemaBlend’s 2022 TV schedule to see what other shows to catch!

Megan Behnke
Megan Behnke

Passionate writer. Obsessed with anything and everything entertainment, specifically movies and television. Can get easily attached to fictional characters.