It’s been six long years since the world received Snowpiercer, Bong Joon-ho’s bold and angry (yet fun!) dystopian thriller about a class war breaking out on a long train cruising through a frozen earth. And it’s been around three years since we first heard the film was being turned into a TV show. It’s finally happening, with a due date of Spring 2020 on TNT, and proof that it’s really real dropped at New York Comic Con on Saturday.
Granted, the promo featured little live-action footage, and no traces of its biggest stars, Oscar-winner Jennifer Connelly, Blindspotting‘s Daveed Siggs, and Mickey Sumner. In fact, most of it was an animated prologue, setting up its nightmarish future, which very slightly deviates from the one in the film.
Once again we learn that attempts to battle climate change backfired, causing the earth to freeze. Humanity’s bizarre response? Create a train 1,001 cars long, which will house humanity’s survivors — which is to say the ones that are rich. The rest will be condemned to freeze, which is when we cut to live-action, showing guards mowing down the poor people charging the trains en masse, willing to die to live.
The original Snowpiercer — based on the French comic Le Transperceneige — was a big-budget South Korean-Czech production with an all-star international cast, among them Chris Evans, Tilda Swinton, Ed Harris, and Octavia Spencer. It was famously nearly released in America in a butchered cut by the Weinstein Company, who had picked up local distribution rights and, as the Weinsteins often did with films they bought, tried to rework it into something they thought would be more sell-able. After a massive online campaign, they relented, but never offered it a wide theatrical release, even though it starred Captain America himself. As such, it quickly turned into a cult item.