Game of Thrones star Rose Leslie and The Divergent Series‘ Theo James will lead Steven Moffat’s The Time Traveler’s Wife adaptation on HBO, based on Audrey Niffenegger’s 2003 novel. Leslie plays Clare, and James is Henry. The couple’s marriage is put to the test by the act of traveling through time. Moffat — the former Doctor Who showrunner who co-created Sherlock and the recent Dracula adaptation — is both a writer and an executive producer of the series. Sue Vertue and Brian Minchin are also executive producers. When HBO announced the adaptation in 2018, Moffat revealed that he wrote the Doctor Who episode “The Girl in the Fireplace” as a response to having read and loved Niffenegger’s novel.
“I read Audrey Niffenegger’s The Time Traveler’s Wife many years ago, and I fell in love with it,” he said. “It’s a story of happy ever after — but not necessarily in that order.”
HBO describes Claire as “fiery, clever and unstoppable — and for most of her life she’s had an amazing secret. Since she was 6, she has had an imaginary friend: a kind and funny man, sometimes old, sometimes young, who appears in the woods behind her house and tells her tales of the future. Visits from the mysterious Henry are the bright spots in the tedium of her childhood. As the years pass, and she grows into a beautiful young woman, she starts to realize her friend is not imaginary — he’s a time traveler, visiting from the future. And he’s not just from any old future — he’s from her future. Clare has a literal date with destiny. One day she’s going to meet a young man called Henry DeTamble — whom she’ll know very well but who won’t recognize her at all — and she will become the time traveler’s wife.”
Henry “has been a time traveler since he was 8. It’s not a superpower, it’s a condition — he can’t help it. Sometimes, when Henry is stressed or worried — and sometimes for no reason at all — he loses his grip on the current moment and falls naked into the past or the future. One minute he’s making breakfast, the next he’s naked at a hoedown in 1973. He can be stuck there for minutes or months, he never knows. His life is a roller coaster of constant danger and white-knuckle survival. Until one day he meets a beautiful redhead in the library where he works. Her name is Clare Abshire and though he’s never seen her before, she claims to have known him all her life. Finally, his curse has given him something good — and Clare and Henry are about to have the time of their lives.”
Outside of Game of Thrones, Rose Leslie also starred in The Good Fight. James’ credits include Castlevania and Sanditon.