[Image credit: Netflix]
Anthony Mackie is Takeshi Kovacs in Altered Carbon Season 2, streaming February 27. Kovacs is on a quest to find someone he thought long dead: creator of stack technology, leader of the Uprising, and his former love, Quellcrist Falconer.
Release date: February 27, 2020
Cast: Anthony Mackie, Chris Conner, Renee Elise Goldsberry, Simone Missick, Dina Shihabi, Torben Liebrecht, James Saito, Lela Loren
Altered Carbon is an American cyberpunk web television series created by Laeta Kalogridis and based on the 2002 novel of the same title by English author Richard K. Morgan. In a world where consciousness can be transferred to different bodies, Takeshi Kovacs, a former soldier turned investigator, must solve a murder. The first season consists of ten episodes and premiered on Netflix on February 2, 2018. On July 27, 2018, the series was renewed for a second season of eight episodes, which will be released on February 27, 2020. The series received generally positive reviews.
The series takes place over 360 years in the future, with most episodes set in the year 2384, in a futuristic metropolis known as Bay City. In the future, a person’s memories and consciousness can be decanted in a disk-shaped device called a cortical stack, which is implanted in the vertebrae at the back of the neck. These storage devices are of alien design and have been reverse engineered and mass produced. Physical human or synthetic bodies are called “sleeves” and stacks can be transferred to new bodies after death, but a person can still be killed if their stack is destroyed. While this theoretically means anyone can live forever, only the wealthiest, known as “Meths” in reference to Methuselah, have the means to do so through clones and remote storage of their consciousness in satellites.
Takeshi Kovacs, a political operative with mercenary skills, is the sole surviving soldier of the Envoys, a rebel group defeated in an uprising against the new world order. 250 years after the Envoys are destroyed, his stack is pulled out of prison by 300-year-old Meth Laurens Bancroft, one of the wealthiest men in the settled worlds. Bancroft gives him the choice to solve a murder—Bancroft’s own—to get a new shot at life.
Netflix ordered the series in January 2016, fifteen years after Laeta Kalogridis optioned the novel with the intent of making a feature film. According to Kalogridis, the complex nature of the novel and its R-rated material meant that it was a tough sell for studios before Netflix ordered the series. The show was one of a number of dramas ordered in short order by Netflix, which had committed to spending $5 billion on original content.
Kalogridis wrote the script and served as executive producer and showrunner. Steve Blackman served as co-showrunner. David Ellison, Dana Goldberg and Marcy Ross of Skydance Television also served as producers, as well as Brad Fischer and James Vanderbilt of Kalogridis’ Mythology Entertainment. Miguel Sapochnik directed the pilot episode. Morgan served as a consultant during the show’s production.
The series was reportedly the most expensive Netflix production to date. The production costs were not disclosed but Kinnaman said it had “bigger budget than the first three seasons of Game of Thrones”.
Ann Foley served as costume designer. The production crew fitted about 2,000 costumers and custom made at least 500 pieces for the show, and emphasized “grounded” looks for future fashion but figured in specific details, such as a unique palette for Meth characters and subtle costume changes when different people are inhabiting the same sleeve.
University of British Columbia Rose Garden
The series is produced in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Laurens Bancroft’s gardens was filmed in University of British Columbia Rose Garden and the lobby of the Marine Building served as Bancroft’s home. The old Canada Post building was used as the location of The Wei Clinic, where Kovacs was tortured. Scenes with the Envoys were filmed on the Sea to Sky Gondola suspension bridge, in Squamish. Other Vancouver locations include the Convention Centre’s West Building, the visitor centre at VanDusen Botanical Garden, the UBC Museum of Anthropology and The Qube.
Altered Carbon was renewed for a second season in July 2018. Anthony Mackie will take over the lead role of Takeshi Kovacs, replacing the first season lead star Joel Kinnaman. Additionally, Alison Schapker joined the series as co-showrunner alongside Laeta Kalogridis. On May 23, 2019, it was announced that Schapker will be the primary showrunner for the series, replacing Laeta Kalogridis who is still credited as an executive producer. [ref]
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