Showcase acquires new sci-fi series Defiance

Shaw Media picks up sci-fi series Defiance slated to debut in Spring 2013 on Showcase.

Acquired from NBCUniversal Television Canada, the new one-hour multifaceted series from Syfy is set in the near future and introduces audiences to an exotically transformed planet Earth, with landscapes permanently altered following the sudden – and tumultuous – arrival of seven unique alien races.

An unprecedented partnership between Syfy and Trion Worlds, Defiance is the first-ever convergence of television and Massive Multiplayer Online (MMO) gaming, featuring an interconnected world and storylines that will co-exist throughout a scripted drama series and a multiplatform MMO game.

“With original hits such as this year’s number-one specialty series Continuum and blockbuster hit Lost Girl, Shaw Media has a proven track record of launching sci-fi genre scripted series successfully in the Canadian market. Defiance takes a groundbreaking approach to television and gaming, and we are excited to build on our success with this cutting-edge series,” said Barbara Williams, Senior Vice President, Content, Shaw Media.

“We are thrilled that Defiance, an exciting and innovative new drama, will be available to viewers in Canada,” said Ron Suter, EVP and General Manager, NBCUniversal Television Canada. “This multi-screen experience will take consumers on an unprecedented journey that is sure to build a loyal fan base among gamers and TV fans alike.”

In Defiance, the newly-formed civilization of humans and aliens must learn to co-exist peacefully in the richly diverse and unpredictable landscape. Each week, viewers will follow an immersive character drama set in the boom-town of Defiance, which sits atop the ruins of St. Louis, MO, while in the game, players will adventure in the new frontier of the San Francisco Bay area. Although the dramatic tapestry of the series and the intense action of the game will inform one another and evolve together in a singular mythology, they are also designed to be experienced as independent stand-alone properties.

Defiance stars Grant Bowler, Julie Benz, Stephanie Leonidas, Tony Curran, Jaime Murray, Graham Greene and Mia Kirshner. The series is executive produced by Kevin Murphy (Desperate Housewives, Caprica; Hellcats) & Michael Taylor (Battlestar Galactica). Kevin Murphy serves as showrunner. Scott Stewart (Legion, Priest) directed the pilot; Michael Nankin will serve as director/producer on the series. Defiance is produced by Universal Cable Productions. The game was named “Best MMORPG” from GameSpy at the recent E3 conference in June 2012 (among other accolades).

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