Sci-Fi Storm

SCI FI Channel – or “B Movie Network”?

by on Jul.10, 2005, under General News

How does the SCI FI Channel turn out so many original movies for a cable network? This article provides a clue – and shows why they don’t set their sights too high, aiming for the demographics with B-list actors and stories. Some of the quotes are great – showing how they don’t really understand Science Fiction that well. Active Entertainment’s Ken Badish says the most important thing “is a topical film that has relevance to our audience,” and second, “there’s a good story. Like we’re shooting a ‘Jaws’-kind of movie featuring a giant squid.” That’s a good story?!? But they get the ratings they need, and they carry on. I want to start “The Real Science Fiction Channel”, and take that $21M and make _one_ decent movie, instead of 28 schlock-in-a-cans. And nothing would be named “Mansquito”…

5 Comments for this entry

  • Anonymous Coward

    And then show your movie over and over …

    I want to start “The Real Science Fiction Channel”, and take that $21M and make _one_ decent movie, instead of 28 schlock-in-a-cans. And nothing would be named “Mansquito”…

    That’s fine, but what’s likely to happen is that your _one_ decent movie is likely to be only marginally better than the `schlock-in-a-can’ movies that you’re replacing. And your network will play it non-stop, because that’s all it could afford, and it will go under.

    Personally, I like many of the Sci-Fi channel B-movies. (Though I did skip Mansquito …)

    The formula seems to work well for the Lifetime channel as well. Take some aging, past-their-prime (read: cheap) actors/actresses and use them to make a movie where bad men do something to a good (but naive) woman, but the woman eventually (usually) triumphs, usually with the help of a good man or woman. (Usually a woman though — most Lifetime movie men are bad.) My wife eats those movies up.

    • JamisonDCush

      Re:And then show your movie over and over …

      Dude, get off your pretentious film-maker wannabe horse and respect the art on display here, especially with Squid/Tentacle (working title). It is so like a sci-fi perma-teen megageek to assume that just because a movie is on the SciFi Channel that it is going to suck. Like you are in on some kind of uber-geek joke.

      Well, the joke’s on you brother.

      I ask you, just because no one ever heard of Carpenter before Ghosts of Mars, was it assumed that the now masterpiece would fail? Please! Only with an open mind for original thought from a newby did we see the genius at work there.

      I have it on good authority that Squid/Tentacle (working title) will be a tour-de-force creature feature that will “feature” thrills and compelling story telling. How do I know? Because the “bad boy of scifi writing” himself, Nick Garland, drafted the screenplay.

      Now, I have had the pleasure of seeing his work in various short film festivals around the country, and it is nothing short of breathtaking. This man knows drama and gripping story telling. He also knows the ladies, if you know what I mean.

      So, take heed. If you invested a little of your virgin acne ridden angst in giving the genre greats the credit they deserve, instead of ripping them while jacking off to pictures of Linda Carter circa 1976, perhaps true genius like Nick Garland and Squid/Tentacles (working title) could be appreciated in our lifetime.

      “Drama is life with the boring parts cut out.” -Hitchcock

    • Anonymous Coward

      Re:And then show your movie over and over …

      You forgot to add that the Wifetime movies have to be 6 to 8 hours long.
      My LP forgets that she has watched most of a movie before, and about half way through remembers the end. She then recites what will happen in the next few hours and watches it anyway. Those movies must be GREAT!!!

  • Anonymous Coward

    Video on demand

    I’m so looking forward to the day when all video becomes video-on-demand. Then I can set my cable box to take all the real sci-fi stuff and assemble it into one big virtual sci-fi channel, with no crappy horror movies at all.

    Why do all the sci-fi movies have to be combined with horror or action? Most of the good sci-fi stuff I read doesn’t have much action, and almost no horror.

  • Deredwop

    B movies are Awesome

    Scifi Channel has some crappy shows, but what network doesn’t?

    why are the really good Scifi movies considered to be real Scifi?

    I love crappy Scifi and Action Movies. They are much better than movies that do nothing but hire expensive actors and use expensive production values.

    I’m pretty sure the second and third matrix had a higher budget than the first, but which one did you like better?

    By the way (a little off topic)

    More movies need to focus on having robots and aliens, and cyborgs, spaceships, and ninjas instead of ben affleck and coming of age movies!

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