Monday, December 01, 2008

SciFi Channel greenlights CAPRICA to series

From Variety this evening:

Sci Fi Channel has greenlit "Caprica," the much-anticipated prequel to hit series "Battlestar Galactica."

"Caprica" will star Eric Stoltz, Esai Morales, Paula Malcomson and Polly Walker, and will be set 50 years prior to "Galactica's" seminal attack on human civilization by those dreaded 'droids the Cylons. Family-drama-themed series will focus on the Earthlike planet of Caprica as two rival families deal with, among other topical issues, the broader implications of their society's emerging artificial intelligence technology sector.

Produced by Universal Cable Prods., "Caprica" will be exec produced by "Galactica" masterminds Ronald D. Moore and David Eick, along with Remi Aubuchon ("24"). The pilot was co-written by Aubuchon and Moore and directed by Jeffrey Reiner ("Friday Night Lights.")

Having already produced a two-hour backdoor pilot, Sci Fi is aiming for an early 2010 bow for the series, with production starting around the middle of next year, probably in Vancouver, where both "Galactica" and the spinoff's pilot were shot.

" 'Battlestar Galactica' was absolutely our flagship show. It put us on the map and helped transform the perception of the network," said Sci Fi prexy Dave Howe, noting that the cabler hopes to draw a broader audience to a series it sees as more compelling family drama than "space opera."

"We want people to come to this who have never heard of 'Battlestar Galactica,' " he added. "I think, because ('Galactica's') backdrop was space and spaceships, there was a barrier to entry for some viewers. 'Caprica' has none of that. It's an intense family drama set on an Earthlike planet, in the near future, speaking to a lot of the ethical dilemmas that we as a human race are going to have to face very shortly."

"Galactica" has had its fourth and final season in the can for several months, with the final 10 episodes culminating their run March 20. A two-hour movie adaptation, "Battlestar Galactica: The Plan," is slated for early summer.

Mark Stern, original programming topper for Sci Fi and Universal Cable Prods., says waiting until 2010 to bow the prequel will give the producers time to regroup the core of "Galactica's" writing staff, which has largely scattered to other shows.

"One of the other things we have going for is, this is one of the first shows we've done in conjunction with our new cable studio," Stern added. "There will be a lot of coordination between the studio and the network, not just on production, but how the series is launched, as well."


Wow.


ETA: left off the Variety piece, but included in the SciFi press release, was that SciFi has made an order for 18 more hours of show. That's 20 hours of Caprican goodness, people. :)

31 comments:

Nathan said...

This is GREAT news! Too bad it won't be on the air for over a year, but I can wait! Thanks for the post!

Master Prudent said...

So what happens to Virtuality now that Moore is doing this? Is there a chance he'll do both and rely on Taylor and Aubuchon to handle the day to day of the new series? Would Fox still invest in Virtuality if they don't have *drumroll* the creator of Battlestar Galactica aboard?

To be honest it held more interest for me - I was really looking forward to seeing how the reality TV angle played out in particular and I like most of Taylor's writing for BSG.

ProgGrrl said...

As Exec Producer, RDM can certainly work on several shows at the same time. It'd be a darned shame if his time as a showrunner is ending, yes...but it can be done.

I've read both those pilot scripts, btw, and they are entertaining, thoughtful, and excellent beginnings.

Brisotope said...

Well, maybe SciFi's long run of self-destructive behavior is coming to an end with this news! Let's see, they continuously serve up below B original movies, they call BSG their flagship show but they once put it on a year hiatus, the day after Thanksgiving they filled their programming with a frakkin' Mork and Mindy marathon (I'm still blown away by that decision). But now I feel that they have redeemed themselves a little. Yay for Caprica!

Anonymous said...

While I am delighted the Caprica has been greenlit, I think this...

"because ('Galactica's') backdrop was space and spaceships, there was a barrier to entry for some viewers."

...explains Skiffy's self destructive actions pretty well. They want mundanes, and they're willing to alienate sci-fi fans to get them, which is why they bring us garbage like reality shows, wrestling, Passions, etc. Until they understand that they are a niche network, whose core audience is here because they enjoy and want to watch science fiction, they will continue losing audience.

Here's hoping they keep network interference in Caprica to a minimum and let Moore and company continue to work at the level of excellence we've seen in Galactica.

Ron E. said...

Scifi's "You will know the truth" page has updated with the next clue. It's the Last Supper picture with Roslin missing.

http://www.scifi.com/battlestar/youwillknowthetruth/index.php?pageid=70

radii said...

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It is not the Daytime Drama Network, it is the Science Fiction channel

gorehound13 said...

Well I do love BSG but still I am not sure I even care about this Caprica show.I will try it out and maybe I will like it but i got a real gut feeling that this type of show is not at all my taste.
As a matter of fact I find the whole premise of this show unappetizing to my taste so much....soap opera,no outer space,family drama.
We should of had more seasons of BSG not this !!!
I hate dramas and soap operas !!!

Anonymous said...

You are some odd fans. The guys who gave you the great hard scifi full of ideas and intense emotions and philosophy and whatnot...and here you all are bitching and whining and throwing around words like 'soap opera' and 'laser beams'. Didn't realize how petty you all were.

Can't wait to see any new show from these folks. Doesn't need to be in space, or include guns, to be great science fiction for the adult mind.

Michael Olsen said...

Great news. The more RDM (esp. on The SciFi Channel) the better.

Anonymous said...

Wow!!! MSN is reporting 20 Episodes, I thought they would have been conservative and gone with 13.

I think the reason Scifi waited so long to pick Caprica up was budget and making sure they had the right minds available to work on the series. If they are going to do it, do it right - rather than tarnish BSG's good name.

Craig Ranapia said...

I hate dramas and soap operas !!!

Sorry for getting ever so slightly bitchy here, but we are both watching the same BSG aren't we?

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