The BBC Is Turning Splinter Cell Into A Radio Drama, No I’m Not Kidding

The BBC Is Turning Splinter Cell Into A Radio Drama, No I’m Not Kidding

Splinter Cell fans have spent the last hundred years or so asking Ubisoft to consider making another game in the well-loved stealth-action series of games. Ubisoft’s response, when it hasn’t been a long and inscrutable silence, has been to reference the series in other games and say nothing else. Recently, it finally caved to pressure and announced a remake of the original game.

But long before fans will get to go on a new sneaking mission with the series protagonist and frequent government irritant Sam Fisher, fans will get to return to the Splinter Cell universe in an unexpected way: a BBC Radio 4 drama.

Yes, Ubisoft turned Splinter Cell into a damn radio play before it made a new game.

As spotted by Eurogamer, the show’s official title is Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Firewall and is about Fisher recruiting the next generation of whip-smart NSA operatives who will join Fourth Echelon. The official synopsis: “When a lethal assassin from Fisher’s past returns from the dead on a mission of murder, he is thrust into a race against time as a sinister threat to global security is revealed.”

Andonis Anthony from The Archers stars as Fisher, with Daisy Head as his daughter Sarah. Sacha Dhawan, Nikesh Patel, and Will Poulter round out the cast.

Splinter Cell: Firewall was written for radio by Paul Cornell, who has written many Doctor Who novels, audio plays, and comics. He’s also worked with Marvel Comics in the past. The show will air weekly on Fridays in the UK from December 2. All eight Splinter Cell episodes will be available on BBC Sounds from next week.

If you’d asked me to name a kind of media ripe for a Splinter Cell adaptation, a BBC radio play would not have even appeared on the list. The genre has had some success adapting brands with geek cred. Marvel’s audio play Wolverine: The Long Night, in which a pair of federal agents are dispatched to a small town in Alaska to solve a serial murder case where Logan is the primary suspect, was so unexpectedly good it led to a second, equally great season.

The BBC is not the only entertainment giant interested in adapting Splinter Cell — an animated series is currently in production at Netflix, along with Ubisoft stablemate Far Cry and its spin-off Blood Dragon.

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