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‘House of Cards’ Creator Beau Willimon Heading to Hulu for Mars Series

Variety logo Variety 5/3/2017 Elizabeth Wagmeister
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Beau Willimon, who created Netflix’s “House of Cards,” is heading over to Hulu for his next project.

Hulu has given a straight-to-series order to “The First,” a drama set in the near future about the first human mission to Mars. The series explores the challenges of taking the first steps toward interplanetary colonization.

Willimon created and wrote “The First” and will serve as executive producer, alongside his producing partner Jordan Tappis. The duo’s company Westward Productions will produce and own the show, which will be co-financed by Hulu, Channel 4 and IMG.

“It’s a story about the human spirit,” said Willimon. “About our indomitable need to reach for unknown horizons. About people working toward the greatest pioneering achievement in human history. And about the cost of that vision, the danger and sacrifice — emotional, psychological, and physical — that’s required to achieve it. How ordinary, imperfect people band together and overcome a myriad of obstacles to grasp the extraordinary.”

Getting into business with Hulu is an interesting move for Willimon, who departed his own show, “House of Cards,” ahead of its fifth season, which is set to debut later this month. Debuting in 2013 before original streaming content and platforms were the norm, “House of Cards” marked the first original series for Netflix, and Willimon cemented his place in TV history.

Along with announcing “The First,” Hulu also greenlit Marvel’s “Runaways” today at its Upfront presentation.

“The First” is set to go into production later this year, and is slated to premiere in 2018.

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