BATON ROUGE, La. — The First, a Louisiana-filmed television series about the first manned space mission to Mars, will launch Friday on Hulu. All eight episodes of the groundbreaking series’ first season will be available on the premium television streaming service on that release date.
Set in the near future, the series chronicles the first human mission to Mars and explores the event’s impact on the families left behind by the astronauts. The cast is headlined by two-time Academy Award winner Sean Penn. The series was filmed in New Orleans.
“We welcome Hulu to the growing roster of television networks and production teams working in our state,” Louisiana Economic Development Secretary Don Pierson said. “The filming of television series in Louisiana is a unique and important part of our entertainment program, and we are happy to add Hulu’s streaming services to the production activities succeeding in Louisiana. This activity not only provides direct jobs in the Louisiana entertainment industry but also generates millions of dollars in spending which becomes payroll and direct revenue to small businesses. What’s also exciting is having a successful series renew its commitment to Louisiana – this restarts the production cycle. Renewals are easily supported and feel at home immediately, and this regular production means more Louisiana spending, more payroll and steady employment for our talented workforce.”
During 85 days of activity in the state, production of The First was expected to generate $39 million in Louisiana spending, including more than $27.7 million in Louisiana resident payroll, according to preliminary estimates.
The First was produced for Hulu by Westward Productions. The series was created by Beau Willimon, who also created the House of Cards series for Netflix, and the executive producer is Jordan Tappis.
“The First is the culmination of hundreds of people from around the world working together toward a common goal,” Tappis said. “At the center of that collaboration is the great state of Louisiana and its crown jewel New Orleans, home base to both the story and, for the greater part of a year, the filmmakers. The support we received from the people and businesses of Louisiana was integral to the success of our inaugural season and we are eternally grateful for the warm Southern embrace. Beau and I look forward to continuing this partnership for many years to come.”
Three projects are currently filming in Louisiana, including season 5 of NCIS New Orleans for CBS, season 1 of Tell Me Your Secrets for TBS and the feature film Body Cam. Several other motion picture and television projects are in pre-production throughout the state.