Paramount+, a streaming channel better known for Star Trek and Yellowstone, will be the home of the new Dungeons and Dragons TV show. Hasbro-owned studio eOne is working with Paramount to produce eight episodes of a show set in D&D’s Forgotten Realms world, the same place that the forthcoming Dungeons and Dragons movie is set.
Rawson Marshall Thurber, who is best known for Dodgeball The Underdog Story and Red Notice will write and direct the first pilot. Thurber has established geek street cred, he played the Voltron vendor in the Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers movie. It is too early to speculate on a plot, but if it’s set in the Forgotten Realms it’s likely to based on D&D books such as Waterdeep: Dragon Heist, Candlekeep Mysteries and Icewind Dale Rime Of The Frostmaiden.
The timing for this announcement is unusual. Fans of the game are currently up in arms over recent changes to the Open Gaming License which have been leaked by members of the community. These changes seek to restrict the ability for third-party D&D content creators to make money.
Since the third edition of the game launched roughly 23 years ago, the OGL has allowed creators the flexibility and freedom to create new content for the game for a (usually very slim) profit. The old license was about 900 words long. The new license supersedes the old one, is ten times longer and imposes heavy restrictions on the control, creation and ownership of fan-made work for the game, making things far more difficult (and potentially much less profitable) for anyone who wants to make a living from D&D.
This has gone down poorly with the community; with many going online to voice their opinions. Historically when the owners of Dungeons and Dragons attempt to restrict what people can do with the game, it leads to a boom in other tabletop roleplaying games. This is happening right now; highly successful and well-loved D&D third-party content creator Kobold Press has already announced that it’s working on its own open-source fantasy system code-named Raise The Flag.
With no official announcement from the D&D’s current publishers Wizards of The Coast (or their owners, Hasbro) in regards to the new license, it seems odd that this was the week chosen to announce an exciting new TV show. But as avid fantasy fans we will be watching both this show’s development and Wizards of The Coast’s new approach to its core game with interest.