Category: Battlestar Galactica

The 'Battlestar Galactica' movie picks up a screenwriter

Galactica
While the "Arrested Development" refugees dream of a movie and "Buffy" stars hope a big screen version gets staked, the "Battlestar Galactica" movie project forges ahead.

Not only has Bryan Singer signed on to direct, but the movie now has a screenwriter attached: John Orloff, who wrote the new movie about Shakespeare, "Anonymous," as well as HBO's "Band of Brothers."

“I have a pretty radical take,” Orloff told our sister blog Hero Complex, but he wouldn't divulge any specifics about whether his vision for the movie would reboot the original 1970s series or stick closer to the much-loved Ronald D. Moore version, which ended its run on Syfy in 2009.

So does that mean "Galactica" is done as a TV entity, or might we have competing Cylon armies? Although Syfy did not renew the "BSG" prequel "Caprica," a year ago the network announced plans for another spin-off, "Battlestar Galactica: Blood and Chrome," focused on a young William Adama and set between "BSG" and "Caprica" time frames. The pilot has been shot and is in post-production, but Syfy says there is no news on whether it will be picked up as a full series yet.

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"Battlestar Galactica" movie writer: "I'm not going to frak it up"

Syfy greenlights "Battlestar Galactica" spin-off

Full Show Tracker coverage of "Battlestar Galactica" and "Caprica"

— Joy Press

Photo: Katee Sackhoff, Michael Trucco and Jamie Bamber in Syfy's "Battlestar Galactica." Credit: Carole Segal.

Still missing Starbuck and Adama? BBC America picks up reruns of 'Battlestar Galactica'

Bsg When you think of British television, what comes to mind? Cockney lads drinking in a pub -- or spaceships and ghosts? The network announced that it has acquired 80 hours of contemporary classic “Battlestar Galactica,” airing reruns of the 2003 miniseries and the first four seasons of the regular series (2004-2009), all of which originally ran on Syfy. It will launch on BBC America Saturday, June 18, comforting Ronald D. Moore fans still craving their Cylon fix.

“Galactica” joins existing BBC America shows like “Doctor Who,” the new season of which begins this Saturday, and the UK version of “Being Human,” about a trio of roommates who just happen to be a vampire, a werewolf and a ghost, which is scheduled to begin a fourth season in spring 2012.

BBC America's upcoming slate also includes the new series “Outcasts,” described as a “frontier sci-fi drama” about power struggles and sex in “a new post-Earth era” (premieres June 18) and the spooky fall 2011 drama “Bedlam,” about an apartment building haunted by its former inhabitants –- patients in a lunatic asylum.

Full Show Tracker coverage of "Battlestar Galactica" and "Caprica"

-- Joy Press

twitter.com/joypress

'Caprica' finale recap: Zoe and Lacy ascend, and a neat wrap-up as the series ends

Caprica-pictures-480x657 So, in one fell swoop, "Caprica" is done, ending on some awesome, surprising, mysterious notes that maybe we should've seen coming and some that seemed as if they were pulled out of a hat. Regardless of the genesis of the ideas, and whether or not they were planned or fell into place late, there were some very cool parting gifts.

Syfy aired all of the episodes in one block, which was fine for those of us that could sit and watch that many hours back-to-back. The final five (ironic and full circle, BSGers!) episodes — which included "Blowback," "The Dirteaters," "The Heavens Will Rise," "Here Be Dragons" and "Apotheosis" — helped our favorite characters develop in ways we knew they would and some that might not have been expected. If you missed it, there's spoilers here and you should go watch them!

Clarice Willow (Polly Walker): She'd become a definite focal point as the spiritual timebomb and also the one moving the action forward most. In the final episodes, we see her plan to blow up a pyramid stadium full of people begin to take shape under the guidance of her husbands Olaf (Panou) and Nestor (Scott Porter). But things turn dark after she realizes that Amanda Graystone (Paula Malcomson) has been spying on her, having already killed her new-mom wife Mar-Beth (Anita Torrance) due to some misinformation thrown at her by Agent Duram. In the end, despite losing husbands and friends, her faith seems as strong as ever, though it takes a different path: fighting for the rights of robots to be recognized as sentient beings.  We're not sure of her ultimate fate after she meets up with ...

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New 'Battlestar Galactica' project is 'loaded with new characters'

Eick On Friday, we told you about Syfy’s plans to air “Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome," a two-hour spinoff pilot that follows a young William Adama. Executive producer David Eick spoke with The Times’ resident BSG connoisseur Geoff Boucher  over on our sister blog Hero Complex about the project. Fans can expect a connection to “Caprica” and “BSG” and loads of new new characters.” Check out the full Q&A session here.

--Yvonne Villarreal

Twitter.com/villarrealy

Photo: David Eick. Credit: Getty Images

Syfy greenlights 'Battlestar Galactica' spinoff‎

Eick Syfy announced Friday that it’s gearing up to bring fans an all-new chapter in the BSG saga with “Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome.”

The two-hour spinoff pilot, from executive producer David Eick, will follow a twentysomething William Adama during the 10th year of the first Cylon War. He soon finds himself leading a top secret mission that could change the course of the war.

“While maintaining the themes of politics, social propaganda, and the timeless question: What does it mean to be human?, ‘Blood & Chrome’ will also return us to the authentic, relentless depiction of combat and the agony and ecstasy of human-Cylon war, which was the hallmark of ‘Battlestar Galactica's’ early seasons,” Eick said in a statement.

“Blood & Chrome” was originally ordered last summer by the network as a Web series, with former "Battlestar Galactica" co-executive producer Michael Taylor tapped to write the nine mini episodes.

In a statement, Mark Stern, executive vice president of original programming for SyFy and co-head of content for Universal Cable Productions, had this to say:  “The ‘Galactica’ universe as re-imagined by Ron Moore and David Eick is rich with possibilities and backstory. We jumped at the chance to revisit the William Adama character and explore this exciting chapter in the BSG narrative which falls between the events of the original series and the prequel, ‘Caprica,’ currently airing on Syfy.”

"Caprica" has floundered in the ratings since its premiere this year.

There is no air date set for "Blood & Chrome,"  but it is expected to go into production early next year.

— Yvonne Villarreal

twitter.com/villarrealy

Photo:  David Eick arrives at the "The Battlestar Galactica/Caprica" at PaleyFest09 in Hollywood. Credit:  Valerie Macon / Getty Images. 

'Caprica' countdown: David Eick and the history of Caprica

After a minor interruption, the "Caprica" countdown continues with just three days left until the pilot re-airs and reaquaints viewers with the characters and quirks of the Syfy show. We're coming back strong too, posting a conversation with executive producer/writer/whatever's-needed guy David Eick. Before that, a quick introduction to another of the 12 Colonies: Leonis.

Two major landmasses differentiate this beautiful colony, ideal for a variety of outdoor activities thanks to its predictable climate. Leonans are an overambitious and wealthy society that is increasingly isolationist and even xenophobic, making modern Leonan democracy and inter-colony relations deeply troubled.

And now, on to Mr. Eick and his thoughts on the optimistic, technologically enhanced culture of Caprica.

So how long ago did the idea for "Caprica" actually come about?
The first time that myself, Ron Moore and Remi Aubuchon got together to discuss it was was five years ago. It's crazy cause it doesn't seem that long. Ron and I came from these franchises that had spawned offspring. In Ron's case it was "Star Trek" and in mine it was the "Hercules"/"Xena" world. At some point Main_feature during the second season of "Battlestar," we started kicking around the idea of another story rooted in this world. We started kicking around the idea of a more human-based, terrestrial-based soap opera with a sci-fi undertone that would take place in the years before the events that were depicting in "Battlestar." In affect, it would be Dallas where the McGuffin would be artificial intelligence instead of oil.

We had a general conversation with execs at Universal, then we tabled it as we continued to make "Battlestar." We got a call from those execs some time later and they said that at some point in time they heard a pitch from Remi Aubuchon that they felt crossed paths in many ways with what we'd talked about for our "Battlestar" prequel. It just made sense to Ron and I to have another partner since we were so into just making "Battlestar" at the time.  So we sat down with Remi and started to hammer out where this spinoff would be.

So I don't really need to ask if it was a harder sell than the original 'reimagined' "Battlestar" premise?
Our reimagined "Battlestar" premise was held back by a couple of things at different stages. One was title, which was a blessing and a curse. It opened certain doors, but there's a whole contingent ... who would not watch a show called "Battlestar Galactica" no matter how many trophies you win. And Bonnie Hammer said to me, 'You're gonna have to explain to me again when you come in to pitch this why the world needs another space opera.'  And I think we did.

In this case, we had a leg up, you could say. We were coming at the "Battlestar" mythos at what did not feel like a lot of other shows.  As unique as "Battlestar" is, it's still easy to lump it in with "Stargate" and "Star Trek" and "Andromeda" and I can't even name them all. Whereas with "Caprica" I think we're operating in very unique territory.

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'Caprica' countdown: The music of the master, Bear McCreary

Head shot Counting down until the Jan. 22 premiere of "Caprica," we take a look at a man who has helped shape the mood and tone of the "Battlestar Galactica" universe as much as anyone acting, lighting, writing or directing an episode: composer and musician Bear McCreary. His arrangements bring huge crowds of not only "BSG" fans but also general music fans out to concert venues around the country.

Hard-core fans realize the intricacy with which McCreary crafts tunes, creating themes for characters that define who they are, and even who they will be. The young accordion player (among other things) turns 31 soon, making him an Aquarius (or right on the cusp). And that transitions into our latest description of another planet making up the 12 Colonies, Aquarion:

A frigid ocean world, Aquarion functions as little more than a scientific research outpost to the rest of the colonies. There are small landmasses, usually volcanic, and there are native communities, both small and tolerant enough to effectively use a unique communal governing system.

And "unique" takes us back to McCreary. I saw the maestro play a concert in 2009 down the street from the Los Angeles Times building in downtown L.A. I felt like a final five cylon following the melodic sounds to the venue. The crowd assembled was the opposite of intimate, but the communal mood was palpable as McCreary and the band played to a raucous audience. That's where we begin our interview.

Doesn't seem like a lot of composers command the types of crowds and adulation you do. How are you handling that?

It's interesting 'cause that side of my musical life is not something that I ever pursued actively. I didn't become a TV and film composer because I wanted to play sold-out rock concerts, but that's what's ended up happening. And it's fun. I'm grateful for the opportunity to play the music that means so much to those people, and to me, live in a concert setting with all of the musicians that I work with in the studio. And it's an extraordinary chance for the fans to not only see it live, but to see it performed by the same men and women who play it on the series. It's very different than seeing something in the Hollywood Bowl conducted by a composer or a guest artist 'cause these are the exact same artists who play it on the series.

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'Caprica' countdown: Talking to Alessandra Torresani about the birth of the Cylons

Caprica Battlestar Galactica Alessandra Torresani Zoe Graystone

It's not "Battlestar Galactica." Let's get that straight right now. The tone of Syfy's prequel series "Caprica" may not be as stifling or on edge as life was with Starbuck, Apollo, Boomer and the rest. There's a thriving planetary structure of 12 colonies out there, and that's plenty different enough. To help you get caught up on the show's mythology, we'll be doing a daily countdown until the Jan. 22 premiere of "Caprica" on Syfy, including a description of one of the colonies/worlds with each countdown post.

Alessandra One planet mentioned early on in the series is Gemenon. A mountainous desert with stretches of plateau, Gemenon is best known for its religious fervor. Its mainstream culture is polytheistic, and ruled by a "democratic" theocracy. But it is also the cradle of monotheism among the colonies, spawning radical and extremist groups such as Soldiers of The One. It's that group that setS off the explosion that kills the people that begins the end. (Watch the pilot episode here.)

The character of Zoe Graystone,played by Alessandra Torresani, is a radical who becomes the catalyst for the eventual destruction of the 12 colonies. Torresani is about to trek Runyon Canyon when we talk -- a very L.A. thing to do for the local actress, who has been transplanted to Vancouver, Canada, for the show. It's a very big role for the actress, who says she got it by keeping it "old school": She just auditioned.

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TCA Press Tour: 'Caprica' stands alone

"Caprica" on SyFy "Caprica," SyFy's prequel to its hit series "Battlestar Galactica," makes its two-hour debut Jan. 22. But don't worry. There's no need to fill that Netflix queue with all those seasons of "BSG" (unless, of course, you want to).

Knowledge of the sci-fi drama, which ended its run last spring, is not essential to understanding the new series set nearly three decades before the events that unfold in "Battlestar Galactica," insists executive producer Ronald Moore.

"It's compelling in its own right," Moore said. "There's virtually no tether to 'Battlestar Galactica' from a storytelling standpoint."

Guest stars will include James Marsters ("Buffy the Vampire Slayer"), Scott Porter ("Friday Night Lights") and Patton Oswalt ("Reno 911").

-- Yvonne Villarreal

Photo: SyFy

'Dollhouse': Jamie Bamber talks about his marriage to Eliza Dushku's Echo

DOLL_201-SC4_120

Season 2 of "Dollhouse" premieres tonight and guess who's coming to dinner? Oh, just "Battlestar Galactica" CAG Lee Adama, a.k.a. British actor Jamie Bamber. Nice.

We caught up with Bamber, who spoke to us from the U. K., where he's starring in "Law & Order: UK." He talked to us at length about the differences between filming in America and in the United Kingdom -- No craft services or bottled water in the East End? Actors serving as their own stand-ins? The horror! -- and the mysterious call that led him into "Dollhouse."

How did you get involved with "Dollhouse"?
It was something that came from out of the blue. I was waiting for my kids to finish school in the U.K. so that we could all fly out to L.A. for the summer. Then I got a call from Joss Whedon's office saying that he'd like to talk with me about doing a role in the season's opener of "Dollhouse." That doesn't happen every day in my world so I thought, "Oh, we'll go and see what he's on about." I went straight to work for about four or five days shooting. It was kind of a dream way to come back out to L.A. and get to work with my old friend Tahmoh Penikett [who plays Paul] and to meet and get to know Joss properly, and obviously, to work with Eliza Dushku [Echo, to you].

What was that reunion between you and Tahmoh like?
Oh, it was great! Tahmoh is a very good friend. He took many of us under his wing in Vancouver on "Battlestar Galactica," showed us his backyard and introduced us to many great friends. So Tahmoh and I are very close. He even lived in my place [in L.A.] last year when he was shooting "Dollhouse." It was a real thrill to see him comfortable and very much as the vanguard of Joss' new creation. It was a privilege -- and we got to punch each other as well.

Spoiler alert! Your character is, to put it lightly, not a good guy.

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'Battlestar Galactica': The end

Bsg6_hoxhtckf At the moment, I can't think of a show that has gone off the air recently with more pleas from viewers to continue and reverence from its creators, critics and backers than "Battlestar Galactica."

Ron Moore was right about seeing all three hours of the finale together.  Like a long-distance runner, it seemed to take the first hour to hit its stride.  Once it did though, it broke out into an Usain Bolt-like gallop, stretching its neck out at the finish line before taking its time to cool down for the last 20 minutes or so.

We talked last week about how we already knew who the characters were after so many seasons, and how flashbacks were possibly unnecessary.  I still stand by that in terms of when we got to see their backstories, but viewing everything in its entirety, you can appreciate the relationships and understand the decisions made throughout the series with much more clarity.  Anders' quest for perfection, Adama's battle against retirement, Lee's and Kara's immediate and forbidden attraction, and Laura's loss and eventual resurgence all played into who they became later. Mary McDonnell said that watching the finale made her want to go back and watch the whole series now because it created an awareness that may not have been previously there.  True.

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'Battlestar Galactica': Presenting the president, Mary McDonnell

From fledging and reluctant politician to ballot-box-stuffing strongwoman, Mary McDonnell's Laura Roslin has grown during "Battlestar Galactica," possibly more than any other character. Suffering through cancer before our eyes while trying to help lead humanity to the promised land, the president of the colonies was a journey for McDonnell, and the show itself was an experience the actress won't soon forget. We caught up to her the morning before she was to stand in front of the United Nations as part of a delegation presenting "Battlestar Galactica," literally, to the world.

Everyone speaks of the show as being an allegory of what's going on in society now, and a visit to the U.N. would be the ultimate complement of that. What do you hope to do there?

I'm sure that what we end up talking about will be relevant to them [the delgates] and will emerge from the situation. Really, what I think we all feel — the four of us who will be on the panel — is we feel honored to be asked to represent the show because they will be showing clips from the show as demonstrations of cultural allegory towards areas of interest that they are experts in at the U.N. They'll be dealing with human rights and terrorism, children and armed conflict. These issues were all touched upon during "Battlestar," and the undersecretaries that are in charge of those committees will be speaking about those issues and will bring in clips of "Battlestar."

That sounds really cool.

It is really cool!

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