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The Snowpiercer series’ SDCC trailer expands the movie’s apocalyptic premise

Bong Joon-ho’s cult sci-fi film gets reimagined for television

Matt Patches is an executive editor at Polygon. He has over 15 years of experience reporting on movies and TV, and reviewing pop culture.

Snowpiercer, the 2014 post-apocalyptic action-drama from acclaimed Korean director Bong Joon-ho, chugged along an indie-release path to become a cult hit in the United States. With an ensemble boasting Chris Evans, Tilda Swinton, Octavia Spencer, the film saw a world plagued by climate issues and social injustice, and the cars of a high-speed train acting as the upstairs/downstairs for survivors. As the poor rise up against the rich, Bong Joon-ho stages brutal fight sequences and dips a toe into speculative science fiction. Anyone who actually saw the movie knows it’s a modern classic.

Knowing that most American viewers didn’t fall into that category, TNT snatched up the rights to Bong Joon-ho’s film for a TV adaptation. After a bit of showrunner shuffling, the series was finally full steam ahead in early 2018. Now, after debuting at the 2019 San Diego Comic-Con, the first trailer for the series is upon is, and it’s looking faithful to Bong Joon-ho’s original Snowpiercer vision.

Adapted by Graeme Manson (Orphan Black), TBS’s Snowpiercer takes place seven years after the world has become a frozen wasteland. The series again focuses on remnants of humanity who survive in a train that circles the globe. The cast includes Jennifer Connelly (A Beautiful Mind), Daveed Diggs (Hamilton), Alison Wright (The Americans), Mickey Sumner (Battle of the Sexes), Susan Park (Ghostbusters), Iddo Goldberg (Peaky Blinders), Katie McGuinness (Dirty Filthy Love), Lena Hall (Hedwig and the Angry Inch), Annalise Basso (Bedtime Stories), Sam Otto (Jellyfish), Roberto Urbina (Narcos), Sheila Vand (Argo) and Jaylin Fletcher (Saturday Church).

In the trailer we see Connelly’s character keeping the train in tip top shape, maintaining the luxurious first class passengers’ accommodations and keeping the rigid class system intact. But not everyone’s sipping champagne. Beneath all the gilding (and pet iguanas), a mutiny — led by Diggs’ character — brews.

TBS has great faith in where the series is going: at WarnerMedia’s 2019 upfront, the network announced that it had already ordered a second season of Snowpiercer. Season 1 will debut in spring 2020, while season 2 is expected for 2020.

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