Lev Grossman’s best-selling fantasy book series The Magicians is getting a TV adaptation, expected to air on SyFy.
Cast in the leading role of Quentin Coldwater is relative newcomer Jason Ralph, who is best known for his work on the small screen, notably Madam Secretary and the new David Duchovny series Aquarius. Coldwater plays a brilliant grad student who enrolls in a secret upstate New York university that specializes in magic: Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy. Coldwater and his friends quickly learn a shocking truth. The fantasy world they read about as children is actually rooted in reality and is a dangerous threat to humankind.
The 12-episode series will be written by veteran television writer/producer John McNamara (Lois & Clark, Prime Suspect) and Sera Gamble (Supernatural). McNamara and Gamble, who will also serve as showrunners, are currently collaborating on Aquarius.
The series will co-star Stella Maeve (Chicago P.D.), Hale Appleman (Private Romeo), Arjun Gupta (How to Get Away with Murder), and Summer Bishil (the TV series Lucky 7 and iZombie).
Making his television series directorial debut is Mike Cahill, who directed the pilot episode. Cahill is best known for the documentary Boxers and Ballerinas and the sci-fi drama film I Origins.
Syfy president Dave Howe spoke favorably of the upcoming show, saying, “The Magicians pilot beautifully delivers a world filled with wonder, fantasy and intrigue. We can’t wait to delve deeper into the lives of Quentin and his college friends, as they struggle with the enormity of their burgeoning powers—and unleash them upon the world.”