M. Night Shyamalan‘s movie career has been on a steep downward trajectory for the past several years, but as someone who enjoyed his earlier films I’m still rooting for the guy to turn things around. And maybe he still can. It’s too soon to say how After Earth will turn out, but from what we’ve seen so far it looks… okay.

More intriguing is his other upcoming project, which sees him shaking things up by switching mediums. Shyamalan and former Buffy the Vampire Slayer showrunner Marti Noxon are set to co-write and executive produce Proof, a drama for the Syfy channel. More after the jump.

Syfy has given a “put-pilot commitment” to the project. In plain English, that means the network will be obligated to pay hefty penalties if the project isn’t picked up to series. The plot centers around the son of a billionaire tech genius. When an accident kills both of his parents, he puts out a big reward for anyone who can prove that life goes on after death. Shyamalan is expected to direct the pilot if it gets green-lit.

While THR doesn’t explicitly label the pilot as sci-fi or fantasy, given the premise, the network, and the names involved it’s probably reasonable to assume it’ll have at least some supernatural elements. Both Noxon and Shyamalan have dealt with the dead and the undead in their past projects. Noxon in particular also has experience with the poignant tone that the setup suggests.

Though Proof will be Shyamalan’s first ongoing TV series, it won’t be his first time dealing with the network. In 2004, the Sci-Fi Channel produced a “documentary” special titled The Buried Secret of M. Night Shyamalan in which, among other things, the filmmaker claimed he could communicate with the dead. Shortly before it aired, however, the project was revealed to be a hoax and part of a marketing ploy for Shyamalan’s The Village.

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