The Expanse, Gateway & More: Four Sci-Fi Series We Can’t Wait To See

AbbadonWhile both shows have had their problems, Defiance and Helix gave the first signs that Syfy might be trying to take chances and recapture some of those many fans who had come to regard the former Sci-Fi Channel as a bad joke. Both shows are returning for second seasons, and earlier this year Syfy’s executive vice president of original programming Bill McGoldrick was talking a big game about wanting Syfy to be competitive in a world where HBO and AMC have found huge hits in Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead, respectively. And believe it or not, Syfy has definitely been putting its money where its mouth is, greenlighting a ton of projects in recent weeks, including straight-to-series orders for their adaptation of Terry Gilliam’s Twelve Monkeys and a zombie show called Z Nation.

Even more exciting, Syfy is taking viewers someplace they’ve been clamoring for in the years since Farscape, Battlestar Galactica, and Stargate Universe closed up shop — actually into freaking space. Syfy’s recent announcements include not one, but two exciting new spacebound projects that, if handled right, could be amazing. One is a series adaptation of James S.A. Corey’s critically acclaimed — and rightly so — Expanse series, and the other is Ascension, an original six-hour “event series” about a century-long journey to colonize a new world. Is it guaranteed that either or both of those will be good? Not at all, but Syfy is clearly trying again, and that’s awesome.

They aren’t the only network headed into the final frontier, either. I can’t remember a time when there were this many space-based TV projects in development — all the more impressive since none of them have “Trek” anywhere in their titles. It’s enough to let a little light of hope into our cold, cynical hearts here at GFR, so we decided to shine that light on eight upcoming science fiction projects that have us majorly excited, four now and four more next week. Let’s see what’s out there…

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Flash Gordon Gets Moody With Star Trek 3 Writers

flash gordonFlash! Ah ahhhh! He’ll save every one of us! It’s been a while since we’ve heard any updates about a big screen version of the classic spacefaring hero Flash Gordon, and we’ve been quite content with Hollywood failing to get this particular project into production. But that may change soon, now that Star Trek 3 screenwriters Patrick McKay and John D. Payne have reportedly worked up a pitch with producer Jon Davis, and they’re currently in the process of trying to make a studio deal. Can Flash Gordon save us from a terrible future version of himself? Let’s hope.

McKay and Payne haven’t yet produced any screenplays that have gone into production, but they’re definitely on the road towards success. Beyond the currently director-less Star Trek sequel for Paramount and Skydance, the duo have penned an adaptation of the graphic novel Boilerplate for Bad Robot, as well as a big budget version of the Biblical tale of Goliath. Is it possible Paramount or Bad Robot will want to get involved?


Four-Year-Old Sci-Fi Fan’s Family Gives Him A Moving Star Wars Funeral

Star WarsYou haven’t cried enough today. We’re about to fix that.

A few months ago, Doctor Who’s Matt Smith sent an adorable personalized video to one of his biggest fans, a four-year named Jack Robinson who was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor. And because a four-year old kid is way braver and more ambitious than most of us can ever hope to be, Jack set out to accomplish everything on his rather extensive bucket list. Though he recently lost his fight, Jack’s parents made sure that the last item on his got checked of by throwing him the most out of this world Star Wars-themed funeral you can imagine.


Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes Toys Are Almost As Scary As The Real Thing

Dawn of the Planet of the ApesMuch like Jaws frightened an entire generation out of the water, I suspect that Matt Reeves’ (Cloverfield) Dawn of the Planet of the Apes could scare some folks out of the woods. That may be a bit hyperbolic, but those high-resolution stills of the titular apes we saw last week certainly are all kinds of intimidating. Those creatures may not be real, they may be a combination of computer-generated images and motion capture technology, but they’re neither cute nor cuddly. While a new line of toys aren’t nearly as scary—it’s hard to be afraid of something that is only seven-inches tall—they don’t portray a particularly friendly race of super-smart apes.

Neca has really outdone themselves with the first series of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes figurines. One of the most stunning elements of those aforementioned photo, is the level of detail. You can see each individual hair, every crease on every face, and even single raindrops—it’s always raining in movies like this. The toys, obviously, can’t recreate that detail, but for miniature plastic action figures, they’re pretty damn impressive.


Godzilla Poster Celebrates The Beast’s Japanese Heritage

godzillaBefore you know it, everything printed on paper—books, napkins, towelettes, etc.—will be rounded up by the government, recycled, and then turned into Godzilla posters, which will then become our standard form of currency and identification. “This ATM has a fee of 3 Godzillas. Do you accept?” And you always accept, because Godzilla is king. A good king is one who pays respect to history, which is something Legendary and Warner Bros. have given attention to in this marketing campaign. The King of the Monsters was born in Japan, and his effortless destruction will always be one of that country’s greatest exports. What better way to show that than to consistently put out stunning posters?

The poster’s release was timed with Warner’s announcement that their upcoming WonderCon panel will focus on Godzilla, Tom Cruise’s Edge of Tomorrow, and the found footage disaster flick Into the Storm. Though the latter looks corny, the other two have the potential to be the most action-packed flicks of the year. We’re of course more interested in the King of the Monsters’ return to form from director Gareth Edwards, but there’s no denying Doug Liman (The Bourne Identity) and co-screenwriter Christopher McQuarrie (The Usual Suspects) can easily make a movie that could sway even the most venemous of Cruise abhorrers. Edge of Tomorrow dropped a new TV spot during Sunday’s MTV Movie Awards, so we can certainly expect to see new footage for all three of Warner’s films for their panel on Saturday, April 19 at the Anaheim Convention Center.


The Leftovers Teaser Offers More Mysterious Thrills And Justin Theroux’s Sweaty Body

The Living Reminders sounds a lot like a shoegaze band that just played at Coachella, but it’s actually the self-appointed name for members of the Guilty Remnant cult in HBO’s upcoming drama The Leftovers. But unlike the majority of cults that just want to time death with some momentous event, the Guilty Remnant was born of such an event, and its devotees are into survival. You don’t really get a lot of that from The Leftovers‘ second teaser, but their threatening presence is felt through the insanity that hits in the final seconds. Of course, given it was partly created by genre stalwart Damon Lindelof (and Tom Perrotta, the author of the 2011 novel this series is based on), that probably means we’ll find out that all the missing people are either on an island or a distant planet with Michael Fassbender.

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