LOST and Leftovers boss Damon Lindelof hasn’t formally confirmed his involvement with an HBO Watchmen, but the premium channel is more than happy to clarify a few details. For one, executives confirm any series wouldn’t take the form of a straightforward adaptation, but rather move Watchmen in a new direction.

HBO boss Casey Bloys provided the update at TCA’s ongoing press tour, telling IGN that Lindelof’s take on the classic Alan Moore graphic novel would go beyond the source material, rather than adapt its twelve chapters as a miniseries:

I don’t want to talk too much about it, but Damon is thinking about it in a way exactly as you describe it. Which is, how do you take the material and derive from it a TV show, without making it a literal translation? … Damon is one of the smartest, most passionate, most thorough writers I’ve ever worked with, so he’s really thinking about this in amazing ways. Again, I don’t want to talk about the details of it, but when you sit with him and you see the way his mind works it’s really kind of amazing.

Only days earlier, Lindelof seemed reticent to commit to the project without some defining pitch:

I’ve been very vocal about my love for those twelve issues that eventually became a graphic novel; that they were completely and totally inspiring for all the storytelling that I did subsequently, and that I owe a debt to it. So, is that piece of material something that’s really interesting to me? Yes, but I do feel like I have to weigh the balance of ‘Should it exist?’ before I decide to take it on, and I’m sort of in that process now. I hold the source material in such high regard; it would literally be the worst feeling in the world to screw it up.

For those unfamiliar with Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ original 1986 work, Watchmen explored a world in which the emergence of costumed heroes (and one super-powered being) radically altered history, as the murder of a retired hero reunites them to unravel a doomsday plot. Zack Snyder’s 2009 film finished decades of attempts to adapt the material, and starred Malin Akerman, Patrick Wilson, Matthew Goode, Billy Crudup, Jackie Earle Haley, and Jeffrey Dean Morgan.

It makes sense of HBO to craft something new, rather than risk repeating Snyder’s film, so what corner of Watchmen is Lindelof best left to explore?

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