Over the last couple of years, Swedish artist Simon Stålenhag has gained an enormous following with his retro-futuristic artwork, which imagined fantastical machines and robots roaming around the Swedish landscape in an alternate 1980s.
Amazon is turning his first art book, Tales from the Loop, into a streaming television series, and has just unveiled the first trailer and a release date for the show: April 3rd, 2020.
Stålenhag began posting his artwork online in the early 2010s, and released a collection of the work in 2015, Tales from the Loop. The book isn’t a novel: it’s a collection of art that plays out a story of an alternate Sweden, in which the development of a particle accelerator brought about some strange changes to the surrounding countryside.
In 2018, Amazon announced that it had picked up the rights to adapt the world into a TV series, with Legion writer Nathaniel Halpern behind the screenplay. The series stars Rebecca Hall (Vicky Cristina Barcelona, The Town), Paul Schneider (Parks and Recreation), Daniel Zolghadri (Eighth Grade), Duncan Joiner (Waco), and Jonathan Pryce (Game of Thrones).
Stålenhag has noted the TV series isn’t strictly based on the original book, but would come with some differences within the same world and with the same aesthetic.
That retrofurustisic aesthetic is on full display in this first trailer. Giant robots walk through forests, giant buildings dot the landscape, and children play with fantastical pieces of technology. The series will follow the lives of the people who live above the Loop, and the strange things that it creates. If anything, this looks as though it’ll be a series as beautiful as Stålenhag’s artwork.
The world, he explained in 2013, was inspired by childhood in rural Sweden and the science fiction movies he watched at the time. “The only difference in the world of my art and our world is that … ever since the early 20th century, attitudes and budgets were much more in favor of science and technology.”
In 2016, he followed up with another art book, Things from the Flood, set after the events of the first book. He later turned the world into an RPG with Free League Publishing.
The series will debut on April 3rd.