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Battlestar Galactica star talks film

Battlestar.jpgCould a Battlestar Galactica film be possible? Would there even be a need to see one? Considering where the new series left the story I don't think there's anywhere it could go. Well maybe not in the sequel sense, there's perhaps room for something? Universal do, and we heard in February they were doing just that.

Richard Hatch does. The man who played the original Apollo in the original Battlestar Galactica and then a bad guy and politician in the new series, is saying that there is room for a film and perhaps, depending how you read his words, another series.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, actors are as guilty of manipulating the media to try and get the idea of films and casting into executives heads as much as anyone, and when you hear rumours and comments suggesting an actor could be connected followed by hasty denials, it often means that they are genuinely pushing the idea through the back door. Could this be the case with Richard Hatch?

In this case it's somewhat different. You'll remember that back in February of this year the word came out that a Battlestar Galactica film was in development, but not a film based on the new series that proved so popular, no this one will be based on the first series.

That series was much like the second, or rather that should be vice versa, it told the story of a human civilisation who are destroyed by intelligent robots, check. A group of survivors escape and are led by their warship Galactica on a search to find a mythical planet they called Earth, check.

However in the old series they eventually did find Earth and it was an Earth just like ours (although it was in the seventies) and then, if I can remember it right, kept visiting the planet surface in their invisible ships trying to destroy the odd rogue Cylon robot who had come down on the planet...looking back now I'm wondering if I had just been under age drinking!

Anyway, that's the film that Universal want to make into a film and that the leads of Adama, Starbuck and Baltar will be back too.

Richard Hatch seems to think that the idea could work, according to his comments in Moviehole through MTV.

"I think they [Universal] saw the success Paramount had with their Star Trek reboot. But unlike Paramount, who seems to know the Star trek audience, I don't think Universal ever quite got Battlestar...I just hope they hire the right people, and make a good movie."

Yeah, don't we all. I think they really could make a good film out of it, but the original series? Well that makes a mockery of what we've seen already surely? If it goes back to the first series and ignores the intrigue, politics and depth of the current then what are we looking at? The light hearted fun of the original? It was great then, but not now.

Hatch goes on.

"I recently saw the original Battlestar movie on the IMAX screen, as part of the 25th anniversary convention, and let me tell you, it was born for the IMAX! Even with the bad matte paintings on the original, it still looked amazing on the big screen! If they did it today, a full-blown movie of Battlestar, I think it would be amazing... so long as whoever does it understands the characters, the heart & soul, and mythology of it. I just hope they really get it"

I'm really not so sure, a film version of the original is going to clash time lines with the remake television series and that means trouble for the new fans, and let's face it, there are more fans of the new series than there are of the original.

However Hatch is talking about something rather different, he wants a series to do what Star Trek (Filmstalker review) did, go back to when the characters were young. Well that's where the prequel television series Caprica is going isn't it? Why would they need a film about that?

To be fair to Hatch, he's actually got his head screwed on with regards this film idea, and it's very clear that there's no real idea which way this is going to go, old or new.

He talks about how the series will never end if the fans don't want it to, and like Babylon 5 there's always room for more if they are making money and the fans want them. That's the problem though, to make the money they need to be in the same style and at the same level as the new, successful series, and that has to rule out the idea of the old series making it to a film version.

There may be a new film coming on the Battlestar Galactica front, old series or new series, but I think it's going to be a difficult one for the studio to put together unless Ronald D. Moore gets on board or at least some of the stars from his series.

Actually I'm really not sure how that could work. I just don't see space in the series to make a film, or with Caprica coming, before either, can you?

I guess there is space to do a film from the current series, just make it from the same time line that the series occupied but forget the story of the series, but come on, who's going to accept that?



Hatch was never a fan of the new series, he complained constantly and can't let go of the past. I read somewhere that he wrote comics or fanfiction or something, and has been trying to get an extension of the original series done forever. He sounded pretty emo about the prospect of the reboot from the start and every time I'd heard him speak during pressers for the reboot, he found a way to work in mention of how great the original was.

Make no mistake, he is pressing for Battlestar--old school Battlestar only. He doesn't want a movie in the reboot universe, he doesn't want the moral complexity or cynicism. He wants that fluffy, black and white good v evil 70s scifi vibe. On one hand, I feel sorry for the guy, he's obsessed. On the other, I hope he fails miserably. He would love to undo everything series 2 did, and revert the audiences image of "true" BSG back to its origins. Even with a prequel he will not be keen on connecting it to the reboot, he really wants a return to the cheeseball roots... with a better effects budget, of course.

Caprica and The Plan are already working the prequel angle, we don't need Hatch involved in any of it.

And the most important part of it all, there can only be one Baltar, and that's the not-really-evil sleaze Gaius Baltar. Hatch would never want that, that's not the "soul" of BSG to him. Reboot Baltar is one of the greatest examples of the modern moral relativity that really rubs Hatch the wrong way. No Callis, no watch for me. I have little interest in the existing prequel stuff for that reason, but Hatch would be far worse.

If he didn't like the new series why did he appear in it so much?

Oh, and I don't know much about The Plan, is it prequel material?

He appeared on it because he was offered the job and, I guess, it was a way to stay connected/associated with the franchise, even if it wasn't what he wanted for it. As for The Plan, it's a pseudo-prequel directed by Olmos himself. It takes a mix of already shot footage and new stuff to tell the Cylon side of the story just after the decimation of the colonies.

More here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battlestar_Galactica:_The_Plan

I'm not to keen on it, as I've pointed out Callis is my fav person on the show, as well as integral to the Cylon plans early in the series, yet appears he isn't even involved in this. I can imagine he might appear in reused footage from the show, but still. He's frakking Baltar! Ahem... a bit off topic there. Point is, Hatch was offered the part in the series and decided to take it, but it's pretty clear it's with seriously mixed emotions and if he gets his hands on doing this big screen adaptation, it won't be good. imo, anyway. I looked at his bio on wiki, it seems it was Battlestar novels he co-wrote, which I suppose isn't quite fanfiction... but close enough. The wiki was edited, or I'd give you a quote on the depression stuff.

Ah yes, I remember reading about The Plan now, I think it sounds an interesting concept, but how much more it can tell us about the story is unclear.

If Hatch was only concerned about the original series and didn't rate the new, I'm surprised he accepted to do the new one.

Perhaps it was for money or recognition in order to be able to push for a revival of the old series, but it seems a hell of a sell out to promote the old.

I'm not convinced that this was his sole motivation, especially with the quality of the BSG script.

Actually I didn't get the impression that he was selling himself as being involved in the creation of the series, just wanting it made.

However what goes on behind the scenes is anyone's guess and without official word form Hatch himself you could well be right.


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