Think for yourself, schmuck! Everything you’ve ever believed is probably a lie. If you have any answers, we will be glad to provide full and detailed questions. If you’re looking for an eye in a pyramid, the best place to start is The Illuminatus! Trilogy by Robert Anton Wilson and Robert Shea, an incredible ride through the looking glass of sex, drugs, rock, roll and the conspiracy it took to make it all happen. Hivemind partnered with writer/director Brian Taylor (Happy!, Crank) and European production company Kallisti for a new television series based on the hugely influential science-fiction franchise which introduced the Illuminati into popular consciousness.
“ILLUMINATUS! is a kind of mind-blowing literary miracle,” Taylor, who will be the showrunner, said in a statement. “It manages to be completely seminal while as relevant today – if not more so – than the day it was published. Wilson and Shea have created a fractal-like world of conspiracy inside conspiracy that completely anticipates today’s internet-fueled, Post-Truth culture.”
Brooklyn-born Wilson was an agnostic mystic who applied the principles of agnosticism to all things. He met Shea while the two wrote at Playboy in the ’60s. Their book simultaneously fuels, deconstructs and skewers America’s obsession with conspiracy theories. ILLUMINATUS! was first published in 1975 at the height of post-Watergate paranoia. It continues to grow “not just because it explores and indulges the most compelling depths of America’s conspiratorial imagination, but because it also gives us the tools and knowledge to understand it,” Hunter Gorinson, Hivemind’s vice president of brand and content strategy, said in a statement. Hivemind is behind Amazon‘s science-fiction series The Expanse, and Netflix‘s adaptation of The Witcher which debuts Dec. 20.
“When the offices of a Manhattan news publisher are bombed, anti-authority reporter George Dorn begins to suspect that the disturbing conspiracy his editor has spent months investigating is not only real, it might be the key to unlocking all of history’s greatest unanswered mysteries,” reads the official synopsis. “As George sets out to find his mentor and uncover the truth about an all-seeing secret society that seems to unify every insane, inane, and outlandish conspiracy theory ever told – from the JFK assassination, celebrity cabals and lost continents to UFOs, ancient gods and the truth about the New World Order – he finds himself drawn deeper into a war between two shadowy groups. On one side stand the Discordians, a clandestine band of chaos-loving guerrilla fighters led by the enigmatic modern-day pirate Hagbard Celine; and on the other, the Illuminati – elite authoritarians who secretly manipulate world events, ever expanding their wealth, influence, and physical power in a plot to escape the limitations of human existence.”
ILLUMINATUS! is up there with Frank Herbert’s Dune, Douglas Adams’ Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Galaxy, and William Gibson’s Neuromancer as one of the most influential and obsessively followed pieces of cult science fiction ever produced. Because of it there are now almost a dozen sequels and spin-offs, along with comic books, stage plays, radio productions, and role-playing games.“Since acquiring the rights to this wild and unique series, we have been working on an immersive experience,” said Kallisti partners Iris McPherson and Kirstin Winkler.
The Illuminatus! Trilogy casting, release date and production start details have not yet been released.
Culture Editor Tony Sokol cut his teeth on the wire services and also wrote and produced New York City’s Vampyr Theatre and the rock opera AssassiNation: We Killed JFK. Read more of his work here or find him on Twitter @tsokol.
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