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Old March 22 2012, 03:07 AM   #616
Christopher
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

MPH wrote: View Post
What the hell is a digital series?
This little piggy went to market; this little piggy stayed home; this little piggy...

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Old March 22 2012, 03:13 AM   #617
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

I heard one of the camera men found himself on the Cylon homeword.
How about directly to the garbage?
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Old March 22 2012, 04:30 AM   #618
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

Temis the Vorta wrote: View Post
In case anyone didn't see this in the BSG forum yet:

SyFy passes on Blood & Chrome, may turn it into a digital series.

But if it's too expensive for TV, how could it not be too expensive as a digital series?
Didn't it originally start as a digital series when they were first discussing it?
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Old March 22 2012, 08:49 AM   #619
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

JD wrote: View Post
Didn't it originally start as a digital series when they were first discussing it?
Yes. Then they decided to do it as a backdoor pilot for TV, and now they say they're going back to producing it as a digital series again (although they've also announced that they will show the 90-minute movie on TV, so who knows what the plan is).
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Old March 22 2012, 09:42 AM   #620
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

Christopher wrote: View Post
MPH wrote: View Post
What the hell is a digital series?
This little piggy went to market; this little piggy stayed home; this little piggy...

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Old March 22 2012, 02:52 PM   #621
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

Harvey wrote: View Post
JD wrote: View Post
Didn't it originally start as a digital series when they were first discussing it?
Yes. Then they decided to do it as a backdoor pilot for TV, and now they say they're going back to producing it as a digital series again (although they've also announced that they will show the 90-minute movie on TV, so who knows what the plan is).
That is exactly the plan. Air the pilot on TV as a movie to make back more of the production costs. Then produce a digital series on the cheap given the lower revenue stream of online shows.
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Old March 22 2012, 03:01 PM   #622
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

The bait and switch.
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Old March 22 2012, 08:30 PM   #623
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

That would be a good strategy if eye candy doesn't turn out to be one of the chief attractions of the series pilot. The writing and acting really needs to step up and hold our interest, and the jury is way out on that.

Especially since there's something about it that failed to impress SyFy. If the writing and acting were that good, why didn't they fall all over themselves to greenlight a TV series? Judging from the trailer that was released, whatever didn't pan out, it wasn't the eye candy part.
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Old March 22 2012, 08:45 PM   #624
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

Temis the Vorta wrote: View Post
Especially since there's something about it that failed to impress SyFy. If the writing and acting were that good, why didn't they fall all over themselves to greenlight a TV series? Judging from the trailer that was released, whatever didn't pan out, it wasn't the eye candy part.
Interviews with executives have repeatedly stressed that it's too expensive for the network to produce. Digital sets were employed to try and keep costs down, but it seems as if they just made the show even more expensive. Having said that, in all likelihood "expensive" for SyFy is chump change compared to the massive costs of producing Terra Nova. Of course, one comes with a proven audience of about seven million viewers and the other doesn't.

(And it's entirely possible that "too expensive" has just been a smoke screen).
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Old March 22 2012, 08:55 PM   #625
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

Harvey wrote: View Post
(And it's entirely possible that "too expensive" has just been a smoke screen).
I doubt it. SFTV has always been difficult to get or keep on the air because of the expense of creating it, especially if it's something ambitious with a lot of action or exotic settings/characters. That's been a perennial hurdle for decades, so there's no reason to doubt it's just as true here as it's always been.

I mean, let's compare it to its predecessors. BSG had its share of big action, but was mostly character-driven storytelling on standing sets and Earthlike locations, and most of its Cylons were just human actors. Caprica had a lot of digital scenery to dress up Vancouver as Caprica City, but it too was mostly more down-to-earth drama, and it only had a few CGI Cylons, comparatively. But Blood and Chrome, apparently, would be a full-fledged combat-driven series spread across many locations and chock-full of all-CGI Cylons all the time, and it's a cinch that would be costlier than the previous two series.
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Old March 22 2012, 09:00 PM   #626
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

(And it's entirely possible that "too expensive" has just been a smoke screen).
That's my suspicion, too. Why don't they make a serious investment in an expensive marquee show that they think will lock in a big audience? (B&C may not have been that show, but another one could be.)

Isn't the reach of AMC and SyFy about equal, both on the basic cable tier? How is AMC able to get 9M viewers with The Walking Dead while SyFy tops out around 4M or so for scripted programming?

That suggests to me that SyFy could invest more in at least one breakout show to bring in a larger audience, rather than continue to play in the minor leagues like they've been doing, with shows that get adequate ratings because they're cheap to produce, but rate zero on the buzz-meter.

Space opera is expensive to produce, but I see no reason why there couldn't be one that is as big a sensation as The Walking Dead. If people will accept post-apocalyptic zombies, what's the problem with robots or aliens?
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Old March 22 2012, 09:13 PM   #627
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

If Syfy's going to make a big investment in a marquee space show, I'd much rather it be Untitled Robert Hewitt Wolfe Project than Blood & Chrome. I mean, I don't think B&C is a story that would add much to the BSG/Cap universe -- not unless it picked up on some of the lingering cultural/political threads from Caprica, but I doubt that's the way it's going. But RHW's project has the potential to be pretty interesting.
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Old March 22 2012, 09:14 PM   #628
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

SyFy hasn't cared about critical buzz for the past two or three years. I see no reason why they should now; low-budget movies of the week, reality programming, and Earth-based procedural shows have been doing as well as any of their "prestige" programming ever did. Why make the investment in something expensive like Blood and Chrome?

(Which, I should clarify, I do think was too expensive for the network to produce. The more probably smoke screen, I think, is this business about a "digital series." If it cost too much to produce for TV, there's no reason to expect a web-based series that can't bring in as much money to happen.)
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Old March 22 2012, 09:18 PM   #629
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

It's also worth pointing out that Caprica, a show you would have expected to be less expensive than its predecessor, actually cost so much more to produce than expected that the episode order was cut down from 20 hours to 19. The producers blew the budget before the end of the season.
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Old March 22 2012, 09:25 PM   #630
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Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

Christopher wrote: View Post
If Syfy's going to make a big investment in a marquee space show, I'd much rather it be Untitled Robert Hewitt Wolfe Project than Blood & Chrome.
Same here!

Harvey wrote: View Post
SyFy hasn't cared about critical buzz for the past two or three years.
It's not just critical buzz, it's turning buzz into profit by gaining a much larger audience than they've ever had before and funnelling that audience to their other shows.

Success breeds success. They could use (let's be optimistic) RHW's space opera to be their Walking Dead and then advertise the rest of their lineup to a whole new audience. Sure, their lineup wouldn't meet the same standard but some people might decide to sample more of their wares.

At least they could advertise a lineup in the same general genre category. Beats the situation AMC is in, desperately trying to convince TWD viewers that Mad Men is "the same type of show." Gotta love the chutzpah.

BSG isn't the ratings standard here, because it never got better ratings than SyFy's cop shows; TWD is what they should be shooting for. The risk is, do they know the difference between the two, why BSG's audience was inherently limited and TWD has blown things wide open?

SyFy doesn't "have" to do any of this. I'm sure they can remain solvent with their sci fi cop shows indefinitely. But why make some money when you can make mo' money? No risk, no reward. AMC took a mammoth risk and has been greatly rewarded.
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