Game Of Thrones creator George RR Martin's book series Wild Cards is being adapted for television.
The author's sci-fi superhero anthology is made up of 22 volumes with thousands of characters.
The rights to the series have been acquired by Universal Cable Productions, Martin wrote on his blog.
He said: "The shared world of the Wild Cards diverged from our own on September 15 1946 when an alien virus was released in the skies over Manhattan, and spread across an unsuspecting Earth.
"Of those infected, 90% died horribly, drawing the black queen, 9% were twisted and deformed into jokers, while a lucky 1% became blessed with extraordinary and unpredictable powers and became aces. The world was never the same."
He added: "Wild Cards is a series of books, graphic novels, games ... but most of all it is a universe, as large and diverse and exciting as the comic book universes of Marvel and DC (though somewhat grittier, and considerably more realistic and more consistent), with an enormous cast of characters, both major and minor.
Martin, 67, said development on the show will begin immediately, for what he hopes will be the first of several interlocking series coming to screens within the next two years.
He is currently writing the next novel in the A Song Of Ice And Fire series, which was adapted into the award-winning show Game Of Thrones. The new book, The Winds Of Winter, has taken him so long to complete that the TV show has overtaken the source material.
Martin will not be working on the Wild Cards show himself because of his exclusive deal with Game Of Thrones' American broadcaster HBO, but his assistant editor, Melinda Snodgrass, will serve as an executive producer.