The series is an adaptation of the popular post-apocalyptic video game series, which first launched in 1997 and has gone on to sell millions of copies worldwide.
Speaking to Vanity Fair, Nolan said that although the series is set in a dystopian future ravaged by nuclear war, its story will speak to contemporary political issues. “The games are about the culture of division and haves and have-nots that, unfortunately, have only gotten more and more acute in this country and around the world over the last decades,” said Nolan.
“We get to talk about that in a wonderful, speculative-fiction way,” he continued. “I think we’re all looking at the world and going, ‘God, things seem to be heading in a very, very frightening direction.’”
As well as adapting Westworld for television, Nolan also co-written films including The Prestige, The Dark Knight and Interstellar in collaboration with his brother Christopher Nolan.
Game-maker Todd Howard, who directed 2008’s Fallout 3 and 2015’s Fallout 4 video games, told Vanity Fair that Fallout developers Bethesda Game Studios have worked closely with the showrunners to ensure the series is in keeping with the tone of the games.
“We had a lot of conversations over the style of humor, the level of violence, the style of violence,” said Howard, who is an executive producer of the show. “Look, Fallout can be very dramatic, and dark, and post-apocalyptic, but you need to weave in a little bit of a wink…. I think they threaded that needle really well on the TV show.”
On Twitter/X, fans of the original game series reacted joyously to the first images from the adaptation.
“Very accurate. If all goes well we are in the era of great video game adaptions,” one said.
“That looks pretty accurate! I’m excited for this show!” YouTuber PAB Games added.
“Looks perfect, the creators of this show clearly have a respect for the game. Can’t wait,” a third said.
Fallout follows in the footsteps of HBO’s The Last of Us, which was also adapted from a blockbuster video game and became one of this year’s most popular TV hits. In a four-star review of the series’ finale, The Independent’s Nick Hilton wrote that the show “stopped short of being truly great TV, only because of its over-reliance on the picaresque construction of the video game, which leaves proceedings feeling, somewhat counterintuitively, more episodic than a truly great show”.