After the record-breaking success of The Avengers, rumors started last month that Marvel and ABC were proposing an idea for a prime-time TV show set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. A report from Deadline today made it official: ABC has given the greenlight a pilot for what could be the first Marvel Studios live-action series S.H.I.E.L.D.
Joss Whedon, writer and director of the blockbuster film and already slated to helm the sequel, signed an exclusive deal with Marvel Studios for film and television through June 2015, as part of Marvel’s ever-evolving plan to put the fan favorite director’s name on everything they produce. Joss is set to write the pilot with his brother Jed Whedon and Jed’s wife Maurissa Tancharoen, who’ve collaborated on numerous projects including 2008’s Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog. Joss will most likely direct the pilot as well, and all three will also executive produce with Jeffrey Bell and head of Marvel TV Jeph Loeb.
The titular espionage and peacekeeping organization headed by Nick Fury (played by Samuel L. Jackson) was featured prominently in most of the Avengers-related films. It first debuted in Marvel Comics’ Strange Tales #135 (August 1965) by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. No word yet on which characters will be appearing on the show or if Nick Fury will make any cameos, but with most of Marvel’s catalogue on the table, the stage is set for a wide range of possibilities.