Stephen King Goes to Hulu

Novel 11/22/63 gets a series order from J.J. Abrams' Bad Robot

Well, content chief Craig Erwich has been saying since he started at Hulu that he wanted high-end programming, so I guess this really shouldn't surprise anyone: the over-the-top network has green-lit a new series from J.J. Abrams' Bad Robot that's based on Stephen King's time-traveling historical thriller, 11/22/63. It's about a guy who returns to the swingin' '60s to stop the Kennedy assassination.

The show will air in nine, hour-long episodes on the streaming service and is being distributed by Warner Brothers Television Distribution, the company Erwich just left. Executive producer Bridget Carpenter, who most recently wrote Sundance's underrated The Red Road, will handle the lead writing chores for the series, and King, Abrams, Carpenter and frequent Abrams producer Bryan Burk—who's also on board to produce the new Star Wars movie—will exec produce.

The book is one of King's more successful recent efforts. It follows a high school English teacher who finds a portal to the late 1950s and decides that the best way to use his newfound power is to stop the murder of JFK. The plot has plenty of twists and the time-travel craziness resolves in an unusual way. So, it's a logical green light for both Abrams and Hulu, which needs big-ticket shows to compete with powerhouse subscription service Netflix and its Emmy-snatching originals.

King, in a statement, said,  “If I ever wrote a book that cries out for long-form, event TV programming, 11/22/63 is it." That should come as a shock to CBS.

No word on when the series will hit your ethernet cable, but standard lag time between announcement and production start is at least a year, so that would mean sometime between Q4 2015 and Q1 2016.