2023 has been a banner year for video game adaptations with The Last of Us earning critical acclaim on HBO, while The Super Mario Bros. Movie and Five Nights at Freddy's were hits at the box office. Even Twisted Metal got a series on Peacock during the summer. Now, it's time for the Fallout video game franchise to get an adaptation of its own.
After an exceedingly long development cycle, Prime Video is finally ready to show fans a taste of life in the Wasteland with the unveiling of a teaser trailer for the upcoming Fallout TV series, which is set to premiere in 2024 on the Amazon streaming service — almost four years after it was initially announced.
With the teaser (watch below) already going viral, and to bring non-gamer fans up to speed, we're tackling a few burning questions about the Fallout series that should shed some light on what viewers can expect to see.
What is Fallout?
Fallout is a video game franchise that was created by Tim Cain in 1997 for Interplay Entertainment. The games take place in an alternate timeline in which America has been devastated by a nuclear war. Many of the survivors sought shelter in nuclear vaults only to emerge decades later to discover a post-apocalyptic landscape that has a 1950s inspired retro-future aesthetic, featuring the ubiquitous and instantly iconic Vault Boy logo.
Bethesda Softworks took over the franchise in 2004, and published the game's subsequent sequels and spinoff titles.
The series is set 200 years after a nuclear apocalypse, as glimpsed in the new clip, and focuses on the "gentle denizens of luxury fallout shelters" who emerge to face with their harsh new reality.
When will the Fallout series air?
Fallout is set to premiere April 12, 2024 on Prime Video.
What happened to the Fallout movie?
Like many other video game franchises, the planned Fallout film had trouble escaping Hollywood's development hell. Interplay announced a Fallout movie as far back as 1998, which briefly had Mortal Kombat Annihilation screenwriter Brent V. Friedman attached to write the script.
More than a decade later, Bethesda signaled its intent to produce a Fallout movie of its own, but like the previous attempt, the project failed to get greenlit. The upcoming Fallout television series will be the first time that the franchise has been adapted in live-action.
Who's the creative team behind the Fallout TV series?
Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy, the husband-and-wife team that behind HBO's Westworld, signed on to executive-produce the Fallout series for Prime Video more than three years ago. Even factoring in the pandemic, it took an unusually long time for the project to come to fruition.
"Fallout is one of the greatest game series of all time. Each chapter of this insanely imaginative story has cost us countless hours we could have spent with family and friends. So we're incredibly excited to partner with Todd Howard and the rest of the brilliant lunatics at Bethesda to bring this massive, subversive and darkly funny universe to life with Amazon Studios," Joy and Nolan said in a joint statement in 2020.
Captain Marvel co-writer Geneva Robertson-Dworet and Graham Wagner (The Office) joined the project in 2022 as co-showrunners.
Is the Fallout series an adaptation of any single game in the series?
No. Prime Video's Fallout will take place in the game's fictional universe, but it will feature an original story and new characters that "tap into the same tone and twisted humor that is present in the games."
According to Prime Video's newly released synopsis for the show, "Fallout is the story of haves and have-nots in a world in which there's almost nothing left to have. Two-hundred years after the apocalypse, the gentle denizens of luxury fallout shelters are forced to return to the irradiated hellscape their ancestors left behind — and are shocked to discover an incredibly complex, gleefully weird and highly violent universe waiting for them."
Who's starring in Fallout?
There are some familiar faces in the cast including Walton Goggins (Justified) as the Ghoul, Ella Purnell (Yellowjackets) as Lucy, Kyle MacLachlan (Twin Peaks) as Overseer Hank, Michael Emerson (Lost) and Leslie Uggams (Deadpool). Additionally, several cast members have already been announced as playing specific characters, including Aaron Moten as Maximus, Mike Doyle as Mr. Spencer, Moisés Arias as Norm, Johnny Pemberton as Thaddeus, Cherien Dabis as Birdie, Dale Dickey as Ma June, Matty Cardarople as Huey, Dave Register as Chet, Rodrigo Luzzi as Reg and Annabel O'Hagan as Steph.
The rest of the cast includes Xelia Mendes-Jones, Sarita Choudhury, Frances Turner, and Zach Cherry in undisclosed roles.
A glimpse from inside the vault
Nearly a year ago, Purnell shared a sneak peak on her Instagram account that offered fans a first-look at one of the vaults in Fallout.
Incoming Fallout teaser and pics
Prime Video's just-released trailer from the first season of Fallout follows the release of several still photos, all offering an enticing sneak peek at what's coming up. And it looks like the show really will put Goggins under a ton of prosthetic makeup to portray the bounty hunter known as the Ghoul.
The show's description for the character says the Ghoul is "pragmatic, ruthless and hides a mysterious past."
Purnell's Lucy appears to be the main character of the show. She is "an optimistic vault dweller with an all-American can-do spirit. Her peaceful and idealistic nature is tested when people harm her loved ones."
This next image features Purnell's Lucy alongside her on-screen father, MacLachlan's Overseer Hank. In the lore of Fallout, an Overseer is the leader of a Vault-Tec shelter. In this case, Hank is in charge of Vault 33.
These soldiers are wearing power armor suits, a very rare commodity in this post-apocalypse world. If you look closely, you'll see that these troopers' suits have the emblem of the Brotherhood of Steel, a paramilitary group that is one of the strongest factions operating in the world of Fallout.
To give an example of the power suits' size, here's a shot of one of the troopers next to Moten's Maximus.
Prime Video notes that Maximus is "a young soldier [who] hides his tragic past as he serves in a militaristic faction called Brotherhood of Steel. He believes in the nobility of the Brotherhood's mission to bring law and order to the Wasteland — and will do anything to further their goals."
Finally, we have an image of the Brotherhood of Steel out of armor, along with some of their Vertibird aircraft.
Editor's note: The original version of the story was published on Nov. 28. It has been updated to include the new teaser trailer.