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Netflix picks up Marco Polo action-adventure series

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Netflix Headquarters 4
Netflix Headquarters 4

Netflix's next original series is headed to 13th-century China. Premiering late this year, the new series is based on the explorer Marco Polo and is described as having elements of action, adventure, politics, and war. It's being created by John Fusco, the writer behind Hidalgo, and will have episodes directed by Dan Minahan, who has directed several Game of Thrones episodes, and directors Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg, whose 2012 film Kon-Tiki was nominated as best foreign language film at the following year's Oscars. The series — which is still unnamed — was originally planned for Starz, but Netflix picked it up after development there was ended.

"John Fusco and his team have created a timeless tale of power, adventure, betrayal and lust that combines deft storytelling and cinematic ambition," Ted Sarandos, Netflix's chief content officer, says in a statement. The Weinstein Company is producing the new series, which will consist of nine episodes. Netflix has a number of other series planned for this year too, including a second season of House of Cards, a third season of Lilyhammer, and the Wachowskis' Sense8. It's also been making a big play to acquire documentaries lately, several of which will be premiering soon — meaning there should be plenty of exclusives to watch on Netflix throughout the year.