Live Action Warhammer 40k TV show, ‘Eisenhorn,’ Announced

Courtesy Games Workshop

“In the grim darkness of the far future, there is only development hell”

Games Workshop announced  yesterday that they are developing an Eisenhorn TV show in partnership with Frank Spotnitz (X-Files, The Man in the High Castle), who will act as Executive Producer and showrunner through his Big Light Productions. The show will be based on the book series of the same name by Dan Abnett.

Warhammer 40,000 started out as a tabletop miniatures game in the 1980’s. It’s since become a cross-platform success, expanding into video games, novels and board games, all set in a war-filled grim future. The setting sees a human Empire that has expanded across the galaxy, but fallen into a new Dark Age, beset on all sides by alien and demonic threats and from within by technological stagnation, rebellion and heresy.

“In the grim far future, the Inquisition moves amongst mankind like an avenging shadow, striking down daemons, aliens and heretics with uncompromising ruthlessness.”


Courtesy Games Workshop

The Eisenhorn novels center around Inquisitor Gregory Eisenhorn, a member of the Imperial Inquisition, charged to investigate and destroy threats to mankind. Described as “part detective story, part interplanetary epic” the series always struck me as a cross between Blade Runner and Dune, a space-opera-noir.

Other than Emily Feller‘s (also of Big Light) involvement, there’s not a lot of other information available yet. Games Workshop has a fun graphic of what ‘development’ means for a TV show, and essentially they’re just starting the process. Hopefully more info will become available soon.

So, full disclosure, I’m a nerd. Shocking, I know. I’ve played Warhammer 40k on and off since the mid 90’s. I’m generally not a big fan of game-related fiction, but the Abnett novels are pretty damn good, particularly Xenos, the first in the series. The whole 40k setting has been around long enough to become byzantine and a bit daunting, but the Eisenhorn books provide a decent entry into that universe, giving you information without overwhelming the story with irrelevant background details. Plus it’s full of pulpy action, aliens, demons, spaceships, mysteries, betrayals and interesting characters.

Yeah, I’m a little excited. Especially with Spotnitz at the helm. While I didn’t enjoy The Man in the High Castle enough to continue past the first season, it was a well-made show and I’m hoping that level of commitment and quality is brought to bear on this.

So what do you folks think? Something worth getting excited about, or too nerd-niche for you?

Author: Bob Cram

Would like to be mysterious but is instead, at best, slightly ambiguous.