The long-awaited Halo series is finally on Paramount Plus. The series premiered on March 24 exclusively on the streaming service and is set to air a total of nine episodes. Halo was originally announced in 2013 during the infamous Xbox One reveal conference. The series takes plenty of cues from the iconic game series while taking plenty of liberties with the source material. But as far as the popular protagonist, Master Chief, who plays him in the television series?
Halo tells its own story — independent of the original games — about the 26th-century conflict between humanity and the alien threat of the Covenant. As humanity's arsenal seeks to evolve with the implementation of the Spartan armor, both factions discover that obtaining control over the titular "Halo" could turn the tide of battle.
In February 2022, the series was greenlit for a second season, a month before it even premiered.
Who plays Master Chief in the 'Halo' television series?
In the new television series, Master Chief is played by actor Pablo Schreiber, who got his acting start in 2007. Pablo is best known for his roles on HBO's The Wire, Starz's American Gods, and Netflix's Orange Is the New Black, for which he received a Primetime Emmy nomination. He has also performed on Broadway and is the half-brother of Ray Donovan actor Liev Schreiber.
Pablo dons the Spartan armor of Master Chief in the Halo show.
According to a recent interview with Variety, Pablo hadn't played video games as a child, much less Halo. He dove into the games upon his casting in order to research the role.
"I quickly realized just how new I was to this medium," Pablo told Variety. "I spent the first few days of my Halo experience getting killed by grunts."
Anyone who's ever even heard of a Halo game probably knows who Master Chief is. As the main protagonist of the original games, the character has become synonymous with Microsoft and the Xbox brand since the release of the first Halo back in 2001. He has been the star of several games in the series, including the recent critically acclaimed Halo Infinite, the first new Halo game on the Xbox Series X. Master Chief's legacy continues in the Paramount Plus series.
In the television show, Master Chief is the latest advancement in humanity's fight against the Covenant. The series takes a few liberties with the iconic character's lore, specifically in that he removes his helmet to reveal his face, something that Master Chief has never done in the games to this very day.
Pablo previously explained to Distractify that the change was due to an effort to make Master Chief more relatable to viewers.
"We want the audience to empathize with our protagonist," he said. "We want them to feel for him and relate to him. The only way to do that is to have access to the face, so you can know what he's feeling and what he's thinking over the course of time. That's how we relate to our television characters."
New episodes of Halo premiere every Thursday on Paramount Plus.