Finally free of the Doctor Who franchise and its various and convoluted time travel shenanigans, former Who showrunner Steven Moffat has just announced his next TV project: An HBO adaptation of Audrey Niffenegger’s The Time Traveler’s Wife, complete with its own separate set of convoluted time travel shenanigans. (Man loves his shenanigans, is all we can say.)
Niffenegger’s book—about a couple whose life-long romance is constantly interrupted by the husband’s involuntary tendency to jump haphazardly through time and space—has gotten the adaptation treatment before; Rachel McAdams starred as the title character in a 2009 film version, opposite a temporally dislocated Eric Bana. Per The Hollywood Reporter, a TV version of the story has now been given a straight-to-series order by HBO, presumably as part of the network’s recently revised corporate mandate for “more,” courtesy of its new owners at Warner Bros.
As for Moffat (who also created the BBC’s Sherlock), he’s on the record as a long-time fan of the novel, up to and including admitting to cribbing some of its details for the occasional Who script. In the announcement for the series, he ruefully noted that, when Niffenegger included a scene in a subsequent book where a character watches “The Girl In The Fireplace”—a Moffat-penned Who outing about a woman whose life intersects with The Doctor’s in a non-linear and unpredictable fashion—he “realized she was probably on to me.”
So far, The Time Traveler’s Wife has been ordered for a single season. There’s no word of any “limited series” language around the show yet, though, so it’s unclear if Moffat’s looking to expand past the initial material in Niffenegger’s book.