Tag: babylon 5
This week we lost two great British actors, David Warner and Bernard Cribbins.
David Warner played a number of memorable roles, from pure villains like the brutal Pomponius Falco in Masada (for which he won an Emmy) and the Evil Genius in Time Bandits, to sympathetic enemies like Chancellor Gorkon in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country. Always a memorable actor in every role, he did guest spots on many shows including Babylon 5 and Star Trek: The Next Generation and many animation voice roles. He was also a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company and played many classic roles on stage.
When I first had access to cable and the movie channels, there were a few movies I would watch over and over – two of them were Time Bandits and Time After Time, where he played Dr. John Stevenson, who in fact was Jack the Ripper, who escapes from 1893 London in H.G. Wells time machine to 1979 San Francisco. They were followed by Tron, where he played the dual role of Ed Dillinger/Sark – END OF LINE.
Bernard Cribbins is perhaps best known for his role as Wilfred Mott, Donna Noble’s grandfather, during David Tennant’s run in Doctor Who. He originally appeared in the Christmas episode, “Voyage of the Damned”, and was later retconned as Donna’s grandfather when he became a recurring character. His emotional pleas in Tennant’s final episode could really be felt. Cribbins also appeared in the 1966 theatrical movie Daleks’ Invasion Earth 2150 A.D., a film adaptation of the William Hartnell episode The Dalek Invasion of Earth” which starred Peter Cushing as wholly human Dr. Who. He even interviewed for the part of the Doctor in 1974…but lost to Tom Baker.
An actor since he was 14, he is also well known in Britain as the most frequent storyteller in the children’s series Jackanory, as well as appearing or narrating many other children’s programs, and received a special award from the British Academy Children’s Awards in 2009 and in 2011 received an Officer of Order of the British Empire (OBE) honor for services to drama. In 2014 he received the J.M. Barrie award for contribution to the children’s arts.
Holy Hand Grenades!!! It seems like hell hath frozen over at the offices of Warner Bros, or at least those in charge don’t still have hatred against – or remember – the old Prime Time Entertainment Network shows. In fact, the people in charge are fans.
JMS announced on twitter today (link to first post in thread) that a reboot of Babylon 5 is in active development for the CW network, and he’s working on the pilot currently and will be the showrunner once again upon pickup. And it is indeed a reboot, which JMS spells out in his tweets – not the least of which is “because over half our cast are still stubbornly on the other side of the Rim. ow do you telling continuing story of our original Londo without the original Vir? Or G’Kar? How do you tell Sheridan’s story without Delenn? Or the story of B5 without Franklin? Garibaldi? Zack?”
Babylon 5 is a big reason why this site even exists, starting with the first real information post (after our Welcome message) 21 YEARS AGO next Tuesday. The B5 Encyclopedia was the first popular web site I created. It got me into understanding how Hollywood worked (or didn’t as the case may be), for this poor guy who was too far away to be a part of it in person. The first convention I traveled more than a few miles to go to was to meet JMS in person. Since then I’ve been on TV sets, made friends of actors, directors, etc. and even been paid as a background actor (not science fiction, but it had Chris Evans in it…)
I was born into Star Trek and grew up with it, but I chose Babylon 5. If Star Trek is family, Babylon 5 is the lifelong best friend.
JMS, if you are reading…if there is the opportunity to be a background actor, just tell me when and where.
Babylon 5 appears to be making a resurgence through available means lately, having appeared on Amazon Prime this past Spring, and now it returns to the airwaves tonight on Comet TV.
Comet TV can be often be found on a subchannel of one of your local broadcast stations. Check their website to see where it might be in your area. Don’t have a broadcaster or don’t have an antenna? You can still get Comet TV via Roku, Apple TV, YouTube TV or even streaming on the web site!
Alas, there still appears to be no movement within Warner Bros to do anything new with the show. But perhaps if it becomes popular via these various channels, they may see the light at the end of the jumpgate… <*>
The denizens of Babylon 5 have lost another member.
Actor Stephen Furst, who became known for the role of Flounder in the movie Animal House and then major TV roles of Dr. Elliot Axelrod on St. Elsewhere and Vir Cotto on Babylon 5 (where he also directed a few episodes), passed away yesterday morning at home surrounded by family and friends after battling diabetes for many years. He was 62.
Babylon 5 creator J. Michael Straczynski tweeted, “On behalf of everyone who worked on Babylon 5, Stephen Furst will be missed profoundly and everlastingly.”
Furst is the 6th major cast member of Babylon 5 to have “passed beyond the veil.” Richard Biggs, Andreas Katsulas, Jeff Conaway, Michael O’Hare, and most recently Jerry Doyle have all passed away.
Oh Vir, you will be missed.
Verizon’s go90 service has added several Warner Bros. shows that had a strong fanbase, hoping to draw them to their service.
The new shows include Veronica Mars, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Babylon 5, Fringe, Almost Human, Believe, and Stalker. All will start streaming tomorrow, April 4th, except for Veronica Mars which will start sometime in May.
According to Chip Canter, the general manager for Verizon Digital Entertainment, “To be able to bring these seven titles to our users is a great opportunity to continue to double down on a genre that’s performed well for go90 and attract users who have been demanding these series or may be discovering them for the first time. This order represents our commitment to a data-driven programming strategy that marries popular traditional series with our originals and organizes them into 4-5 key audience-specific networks as a way to super serve our audiences; these series are a great fit for our go90 Saga network.”
Verizon’s go90 streaming service provides free streaming service built around a mobile-oriented social platform, marrying traditional series and original programming. Verizon Wireless customers can stream the shows data-free.
Emmy award winning visual effects artist Ron Thornton, best known for his work on Babylon 5 passed away yesterday at home after a short illness at the age of 59, as confirmed by his colleague Emile Smith on Twitter.
Thornton co-founded Foundation Imaging and pioneered the CGI and visual effects methods started on Babylon 5 using Newtek’s Video Toaster hardware and Lightwave 3D modeling software that allowed such effects to be both realistic and within a television show budget. He won an Emmy in 1993 for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Special Visual Effects for the work on the pilot movie, Babylon 5: The Gathering, and had three more nominations. Prior to Babylon 5, he had worked on Spaceballs, Critters, and Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future.
After a falling out with the Babylon 5 producers in the third season, he worked on Star Trek: Voyager and Star Trek: Enterprise and co-created the series Hypernauts.
I was sadly notified yesterday that actor-turned-radio show host Jerry Doyle, who played Michael Garibaldi on Babylon 5, passed away suddenly at the age of 60, which has been confirmed by his family. The cause of death has not been determined.
After Babylon 5, he turned his eye on politics. A staunch conservative, he ran for the U.S. House of Representatives as a Republican in 2000, but spent little money on the campaign and only received 30% of the vote. He then became a nationally syndicated radio talk show host. He also created the website and podcast Epic Times.
Babylon 5‘s creator J. Michael Straczynski released a statement on his death.
Babylon 5 has lost many of its cast members far too soon, having already lost Andreas Katsulas, Richard Biggs, Michael O’Hare, and Jeff Conaway.
Babylon 5 creator and co-writer/showrunner of the upcoming Netflix series Sense8 J. Michael Straczynski has signed on to write the adaptation of Kim Stanley Robinson’s Red Mars trilogy as a TV series for Spike TV.
The show has been fasttracked for development by the network after they started development in September.
Given the long history the adaptation has had over the years, I feel a little more confident that this might actually get made.
Robinson’s Red Mars trilogy, which consists of the novels [asin=B000QCS914]Red Mars[/asin], [asin=B000QCS91E]Green Mars[/asin] and [asin=B00165EXI8]Blue Mars[/asin], detail the colonization and terraforming of Mars with very hard science behind it, with a story spanning a couple centuries.
I have no idea how this flew underneath my radar…but apparently at SDCC, JMS mentioned his plans for Babylon 5.
He’s said many times that Warner Bros owns all the TV rights to Babylon 5, and that he’ll never see more money from TV. However, when he negotiated the deal with WB, he managed to retain feature film rights for himself. It seems that WB would still get a cut, making it highly unlikely any other studio would touch the project – but JMS doesn’t have just any other studio in mind…he has Studio JMS, which now has had enough success that it is feasible for it to fund a feature film. So now he plans to have a script done by 2015, and WB will have one year to decide to move forward with it – otherwise in 2016 Studio JMS will do it.
It isn’t certain what form the movie would take, but whispers across the Interweb seem to indicate that it will be a reboot of some form.
Every fan of Star Trek knows who actor Michael Ansara was…he played the Klingon commander Kang in the episode “Day of the Dove”, and then reprised the role not once but twice, on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Star Trek: Voyager. Ansara passed away Wednesday at the age of 91.
You’ve probably seen him in many other things as well, with his distinctive face and voice…just in the SF and fantasy realm, Ansara had guest roles in Babylon 5, Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (as Kane, Princess Ardala’s right-hand man, replacing the original actor from the pilot), Lost In Space (as the father of a young Kurt Russell), Land of the Giants, The Outer Limits and Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea as well as the 1961 movie – overall, he has 189 different titles to his credit. In the late 50s, he had starring roles playing Native Americans in the series Broken Arrow and Law of the Plainsman.
He received a star on the Walk of Fame in 1960. He was also married to I Dream of Jeannie‘s Barbara Eden for sixteen years.