Tag Archives: Hulu

A ‘Hitman’ series is coming to Hulu from the creator of ‘John Wick’

Remember when Square Enix sold IO Interactive and the future of the Hitman franchise looked bleak? That continues to be the best thing that ever happened to the company and their most beloved series. Not only did they add yet more content to their award-winning episodic experiment, not only do they have another season/game in the works, they’re about to have a TV show.

Deadline reports that Fox is teaming up with Hulu to create a television series based on IO’s hit, man. (Sorry.) The pilot will be written by John Wick creator Derek Kolstad, who is also executive producing the series. That’s one promising sign that a live-action Hitman could really work this time. Another promising sign is that Hulu hopes to turn the show into a flagship series for the streaming network. That mean’s it’s more than just a cash grab. They’re more likely to give the show what it needs to actually be good.


The Hitman series doesn’t have the best history when it comes to live adaptations. 20th Century Fox previously released two Hitman movies, and both were abysmal. While many factors went into making Hitman and Hitman: Agent 47 that bad, their biggest sin, as a fan of the games, was that they didn’t understand what Hitman was all about. They took all the careful planning, the intricate assassinations, the dark humor, and the insane methods, and through it all away. They turned Hitman into two movies about a bald guy who shoots a lot of guns. That’s not what Hitman is. Hitman is learning your target’s movements, figuring out when they’re alone. Or if they’re never alone, it’s figuring out how to cause a horrific accident with no one suspecting it’s you. It’s carefully calculating every step and wildly improvising when your plan inevitably goes awry. If you can’t turn that into compelling live-action drama, I don’t know what’s wrong with you.

That’s where Kolstad’s involvement has me optimistic. Yes, the John Wick movies were big loud action flicks, but they had a craft that’s rare in those kinds of movies. Even with the tiniest bit of story, the movies made you care about a character nobody had ever heard of before. Those films displayed a mastery of pacing. The Hitman series will inevitably have its big action sequences, but I trust Kolstad to recognize that the build-up to those sequences is just as important, if not more so. And that it’s just as much fun to watch Agent 47 kill a bunch of dudes with a battle axe as it is to watch an intricate Rube Goldberg machine of death come together. That’s what I’m hoping for, anyway. Also, since a TV show, there may be fewer restrictions on what kinds of stories they can tell. And with a per-episode budget being much lower than a Hollywood film, that could force the show to get more creative with each assassination, rather than turning everything into a big action setpiece.

No word on a release date yet, but this is the perfect excuse to revisit some of your favorite Hitman games. The story of the series is said to be very close to the games’ mythology.



Hulu’s cable killer adds NBC

Hulu has just announced an agreement with NBCUniversal that will result in channels including NBC, Telemundo, USA, E!, Syfy, Bravo, and the MSBNC and CNBC news networks becoming part of Hulu’s soon-to-launch streaming TV service.

“Hulu will soon provide an affordable, complete live TV package that includes all four major broadcast networks, the top-rated cable news channels, a massive sports offering, and our deep existing premium streaming library for under $40,” CEO Mike Hopkins said in a press release. Importantly, the deal also includes a framework for getting NBC’s affiliates around the country on board with Hulu’s service.

That monthly price Hopkins mentioned has been rumored to be $39.99, so while Hopkins is technically correct, it would place Hulu above the starting price of Sling TV, the cheapest of the streaming, live TV offerings. Sling doesn’t include all four broadcast networks for that price, however. The more recent YouTube TV does, and it costs $35 per month.

Hulu has already signed on numerous other broadcasters and networks including CBS, The Walt Disney Company (which would cover ABC, Disney Channel, and ESPN), 21st Century Fox, Turner Networks, and A+E Networks.


The company has said its live TV service will launch sometime this spring. Hulu plans to differentiate itself from the wave of other internet TV products with a unique user experience and its strong back catalog of on-demand content. Whereas many consumers might not associate YouTube with traditional television, Hulu has stronger brand recognition there; it’s already where a lot of people go for next-day reruns — and now, at last, well-received original shows that can actually stand up to those from Netflix and Amazon.

Comcast, NBCUniversal’s parent company, is a partial owner of Hulu. But the megacorp is a silent partner and unable to influence Hulu’s business direction; those terms were imposed as part of Comcast’s acquisition of NBCUniversal. Hulu had to negotiate this deal with NBCUniversal like any other partner.