UPGRADE, the 2018 sci-fi thriller feature, is getting a TV series followup from Blumhouse Television and UCP.
The movie tells the story of a brutal mugging that leaves Grey Trace paralyzed in the hospital and his beloved wife dead. Trace is offered a second chance from a deceased billionaire inventor who offers Trace a cure in the form of an artificial intelligence implant called STEM that will enhance his body. Now able to walk, Grey finds that he also has superhuman strength and agility — skills he uses to seek revenge against the thugs who destroyed his life.
Leigh Whannell, who wrote and co-created SAW I, SAW II, and SAW III, also directed the original film is co-creating and executive producing the new series after coming off writing and directing Blumhouse’s The Invisible Man. Also collaborating on the project is UCP, a division of NBCUniversal Content Studios, under Blumhouse’s 10-year deal with NBCUniversal.
Tim Walsh, co-executive producer of USA’s Treadstone and Shooter and NBC’s Chicago P.D., will be the showrunner with Jason Blum and Brian Kavanaugh-Jones of Automatik (Gretel & Hansel, Honey Boy) also executive producing.
The entertainment news site Deadline was given an inside look at the writers’ room for the upcoming series, revealing that the new series will pick up a few years after the events of the film world in which the government repurposes STEM to help curb criminal activity. Where the movie starred Logan Marshall-Green, Betty Gabriel, and Harrison Gilbertson, the series hopes to broaden the universe with an evolved version of STEM and will feature the STEM tech in a new host.
Joining Whannell and Walsh in the writers’ room working on breakdowns and scripts for the first season are writer-producers Krystal Ziv Houghton and James Roland. The two were involved with the second season of Blumhouse TV’s USA Network horror series The Purge, also an offshoot from a Blumhouse movie title.
The Upgrade series marks Whannell’s TV debut and the first project to come out of the first-look film and TV deal he signed with Blumhouse earlier this year following a 10-year partnership that had yielded seven features.
No premiere date or further information has been announced at this time.