HBO has finally found the stars for its long-awaited series adaptation of Audrey Niffenegger's novel The Time Traveler's Wife. The series will star former Game of Thrones actress Rose Leslie and Divergent actor Theo James in the lead roles. Steven Moffat, who wrote on Doctor Who and co-created Sherlock, wrote the script for the new series.
The Time Traveler's Wife centers on the complicated romantic relationship between time traveler Henry DeTamble (James) and his wife Clare Abshire (Leslie). Henry is not a scientist taking a time machine to different periods of time. Instead, he has a condition that transports him to another year whenever he becomes stressed and worried. He has no control of where he lands. One day, he finds himself in a library, where he meets Clare, who claims to have known him all her life. Meanwhile, Clare has been visited by a mysterious "imaginary" friend named Henry throughout her life. Soon, she realizes he is a time traveler from her future. One day, she meets Henry DeTamble and recognizes him as the "Henry" who has been visiting her.
HBO landed the project back in 2018 and gave it a straight-to-series order. "I read Audrey Niffenegger’s The Time Traveler’s Wife many years ago, and I fell in love with it. In fact, I wrote a Doctor Who episode called ‘The Girl in the Fireplace’ as a direct response to it," Moffat said in a statement in 2018, reports Deadline. "When, in her next novel, Audrey had a character watching that very episode, I realized she was probably on to me. All these years later, the chance to adapt the novel itself, is a dream come true. The brave new world of long-form television is now ready for this kind of depth and complexity. It’s a story of happy ever after – but not necessarily in that order."
Moffat, Sue Vertue, and Brian Minchin are executive producers under their Hartswood Films. Warner Bros. Television has the TV rights to the novel, as Warner Bros.' New Line was behind the 2009 movie based on the same book starring Rachel McAdams and Eric Bana. Moffat's show is already in pre-production.
Leslie starred as Ygritte on Game of Thrones, where she met her husband, Kit Harington. The two recently welcomed their first child. Leslie also starred on CBS All Access' The Good Fight and had a recurring part in Downton Abbey. She will next be seen in Kenneth Branagh's new film adaptation of Death on the Nile.