Among Microsoft's surprises is that the Halo TV series is real and coming 2022

Microsoft dropped some big surprises during a 20th anniversary stream for the Xbox console: the biggest by far being that Halo Infinite multiplayer is live right now. There was another Halo-themed announcement however that in its own way was just as surprising: a trailer and a date of 2022 for the live-action Halo TV series.

Not that we get to see an enormous amount, with this being all about a slow-pan close-up of the Master Chief putting his Mjolnir armour on, number 117 of course, before a female voice calls his name (possibly Cortana though it may be Dr. Catherine Halsey, played by Jen Taylor). The Master Chief in this production is being played by Pablo Schrieber.

I'm only surprised to see the trailer because this thing has been in proper development hell for ages. Ever since Bungie did some live action Halo 3 shorts (including a short film famously directed by District 9 director Neil Blomkamp, above), rumours around this project have circulated. It was originally scheduled for a 2015 release, with Steven Spielberg on production duties. 

Then there was a 10-episode Showtime version after that, due in 2018, which never arrived. This is what was eventually taken on by Paramount+, which is where this will air next year. The show's budget is now estimated at $200 million, so at the very least you'd expect some good plasma gun effects.

Rich Stanton

Rich is a games journalist with 15 years' experience, beginning his career on Edge magazine before working for a wide range of outlets, including Ars Technica, Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, Gamespot, the Guardian, IGN, the New Statesman, Polygon, and Vice. He was the editor of Kotaku UK, the UK arm of Kotaku, for three years before joining PC Gamer. He is the author of a Brief History of Video Games, a full history of the medium, which the Midwest Book Review described as "[a] must-read for serious minded game historians and curious video game connoisseurs alike."