Sad news today as word has spread that TV veteran Glen A. Larson has passed away at the age of 77. GFR fans will likely know him best as the creator of the original Battlestar Galactica, but even if you didn’t recognize the name, you almost certainly know his work. In addition to giving us BSG, Larson’s long resume included shows such as Knight Rider, Magnum, P.I., The Fall Guy, and Buck Rogers in the 25th Century. The sheer volume of entertainment this guy contributed to my childhood is staggering, and I’ll always have fond memories of the BSG/Buck Rogers block that I thought was the greatest thing since Cylon-sliced bread back in the day. Larson passed away Friday night of esophageal cancer at UCLA Medical Center in Santa Monica. On behalf of both GFR and myself personally, I’ll be raising a cup in his honor.
Given that Ron Moore’s acclaimed Battlestar Galactica reboot has been off the air for five years now, I can’t say I was surprised to hear that Universal is moving forward with a big-screen reboot of the franchise. Honestly, I’m more surprised that they haven’t already rebooted it two or three times in the time since Moore wrapped the series up in controversial fashion. Come on, Hollywood, who has time to wait years between different versions of things? In fact, why don’t you guys go ahead and start development on the Battlestar reboot for after this Battlestar reboot? Just to save everybody some time, you understand.
Word of the once-again-living BSG reboot comes via Variety, which says that Universal wants a “complete reimagining of the story.” Everybody sure does love that word these days, don’t they? “Re-imagining.” The bloke in charge of imagining this re-imagining is current hot-shit screenwriter Jack Paglen, who wrote the upcoming Johnny Depp cautionary tale Transcendence. Variety says Paglen is also committed to Ridley Scott’s Prometheus 2, but the last we heard that was being handled by the dude who wrote Green Lantern.
It’s no secret that Glen Larson, one of the minds behind the original, cheesy, 80s version of Battlestar Galactica hates Ron Moore’s current, much more successful version of the show. In fact for years now he’s stood in the way of turning that version into a movie. He owns the film rights, and he’s blocked all attempts to take Adama theatrical. Tonight, Universal Pictures finally threw up their hands and decided to let him screw us all over.
HR is reporting that Larson has been given the greenlight by Universal to make a Battlestar Galactica movie with no connection at all, to the current, mega-successful, much beloved television series currently finishing up its run on the Sci Fi channel. That’s right, before the new BSG’s final season has even finished, they’re already doing a remake.
Now it’s one thing to remake or reboot an unsuccessful franchise. For instance Marvel attempted it with Hulk, after the Ang Lee version received tepid reaction. That’s bad enough. But to actively seek to snuff out a popular, hugely successful version of something, a burgeoning, still fairly new franchise fresh with newly converted fans and all the excitement that goes along with that, by selfishly rebooting it so you can put everyone in 80s legwarmers is an insult. It’s a big fuck you to everyone who loves the current, massively more successful (critically and in popularity) version of BSG.