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Game of Thrones creators reveal ‘funny note’ Obama sent after turning down 3 Body Problem cameo

3 Body Problem creators David Benioff and DB Weiss have revealed the “very funny note” they received from former US President Barack Obama turning down a cameo request in their upcoming Netflix series.

The new eight-part series from the Game of Thrones duo – based on Liu Cixin’s best-selling novel, The Three-Body Problem – follows a group of present-day scientists as humanity faces an alien invasion.

In a recent interview with USA Today, Benioff shared that while Obama ultimately turned down the chance to make an appearance in the show, he “did sign a very funny note”.

“It was to the effect of, ‘In case there ever is a real alien invasion, I think I should probably save myself for that crisis,” he said, with Weiss adding: “[Obama] wants to keep his powder dry in case there’s a real thing.”

Obama previously cited Cixin’s three-volume book when asked what he reads to “get out of his head”, describing it as “just wildly imaginative, really interesting [...] the scope of it was so immense”.

3 Body Problem is the first series Benioff and Weiss have made for Netflix after they signed a reported $200m (£157m) deal in August 2019 to write, produce and direct new films and television for the streaming service.

An official logline states: “As the laws of nature unravel before their eyes, five former colleagues reunite to confront the greatest threat in humanity’s history.”

(L-R) Marlo Kelly and Eiza González in ‘3 Body Problem’ (ED MILLER/NETFLIX)
(L-R) Marlo Kelly and Eiza González in ‘3 Body Problem’ (ED MILLER/NETFLIX)

It comes after they scrapped their misjudged slavery series Confederate in 2018 and quit a mooted Star Wars film trilogy in 2019, which they attributed to their commitments to Netflix.

The latter would have followed the last Star Wars trilogy, which ended in December 2019 with The Rise of Skywalker.

The new show will reunite Benioff and Weiss with several of their former Game of Thrones cast members, including John Bradley (Samwell Tarly), Liam Cunningham (Ser Davos Seaworth) and Jonathan Pryce (High Sparrow). Also starring in the series will be Jovan Adepo, Benedict Wong, Eiza González, Ben Schnetzer and Alex Sharp.

The genre-bending series is expected to present an expansive world in an epic way, similar to recent sci-fi shows including Apple TV+’s Foundation and Invasion. And, if done effectively, this series could be as much of a hit among sci-fi fans as Thrones was for fans of fantasy.

3 Body Problem will be released on Netflix on 21 March.