Wednesday, 1 July 2009


It will be absolutely not a surprise for the readers of this blog [I promised I will not borrow Nikki Finke's "Toldja!" again so this will do]: Sci Fi (soon SyFy) is developing a remake of Alien Nation. A reinvention, as they say now. In May, your humble French scribe wrote: « Monuments should stay untouched, and if the new V succeeds expect Alien Nation 2010 » ( They didn't wait...

Alien Nation started as a 1988 movie directed by Graham Baker, written by Rockne S. O'Bannon, and starring James Caan and Mandy Patinkin as an unlikely cop duo: a maverick human cop veteran and an alien detective in a Los Angeles where an alien civilization, the Newcomers, is integrated within our society but is victim of discrimination. In 1989 20th Century Fox Television and Kenneth Johnson (V) launched a television series adapted from the movie for the Fox network, but Fox cancelled the show after only one season. In April 1991, the mythical magazine Epi-Log wrote: « Has anyone hosed down the Fox Network corporate offices with salt water yet? » (1) The flesh of the Newcomers could be disintegrated by salt water and they could get drunk with sour milk.

From 1994 to 1997 Alien Nation was revived for a series of made-for-TV movies. And now, Tim Minear - an expert in science fiction, is working on a "reinvention" of the franchise for SyFy/Sci Fi, and Fox 21 (2). Variety explains:« The new Alien Nation will likely take place in the Pacific Northwest, and will take place about 20 years after the first ship of aliens - who have been banished as slaves - crash lands into Earth. By the time the show begins, some time in the 2020s, the alien population has multiplied from a few thousand to 3,5 million. And much of the "newcomers" live their own segregated existence, in what Minear compares to the North African ghettos in France ». The "North African ghettos in France"?! Er, maybe this needs a little specification.

Sci Fi wants a successor to Battlestar Galactica. « It's absolute perfect timing for this type of show » says Chris Carlisle, president of Fox 21 (3). No doubt about that, now Sony can revive Something is out there (1988). The Xenomorph beats them all, it will eat them all too.

(1) Epi-Log #7, June 1991.
(2) (3)

No comments: