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Halo TV series early in development, but Microsoft expects 'dramatic impact on how people think about TV'

Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

The original Xbox owed much of its success to one game: launch title Halo: Combat Evolved. Microsoft Studios' Phil Spencer hopes to repeat that Halo-driven success as the Xbox maker becomes a first-party producer of an original live action TV series based on the franchise Bungie created in 2001.

"I think much like Halo begat the Xbox," Spencer told Polygon, "I think the Halo TV series can have a pretty dramatic impact on how people think about television."

343 Industries general manager Bonnie Ross and Xbox Entertainment Studios head Nancy Tellem announced the new Halo television series at Microsoft's Xbox One reveal event yesterday. The two also announced that director Steven Spielberg, who Spencer said has long had "an affinity for Halo," will produce the show.

"We've been a first-party in the gaming space for over a decade now," Spencer said, "and bringing Nancy Tellem into the Microsoft Studios family is an important mark for us as we think about where ... interactivity and social, some of the things that apply to gaming, how that might apply to television."

Spencer said "we had some success with [digital series Halo: Forward Unto Dawn] and thought 'Now where can this go?'"

"I'll be honest," he said, "we're early in terms of what the creative will be and we'll share more as it goes forward."

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