The Twilight Zone being rebooted by Bryan Singer and CBS

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Dream, Dec 19, 2012.

  1. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    What about pulling a Sky Captain, and actually having Rod Serling host? Or would that still be to expensive for a weekly TV series?
     
  2. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    ^ You'd still need a voice...
     
  3. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    I was thinking they could just edit together the monologue like they did the footage, but I guess that would be pretty complex to try to do on a weekly basis.
     
  4. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Commodore Commodore

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    They did that with Disney's Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. But that was for a very brief sequence introducing the ride. I don't think it would be possible or good idea for a full series.
     
  5. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    It would be a cheap gimmick that would distract from the storytelling.

    Moreover, the point of creating a new version of a series is not merely to cater to those who are nostalgic for the old; that's far too small an audience to make a series successful, especially for a show that's over half a century old. The point is to update it, to create a version that can appeal to a new generation of viewers while still capturing the spirit and sensibilities of the original. The ideal approach would be one that would make fans of the classic series feel it was true to Serling's spirit... while also being accessible and engaging to audiences who have never heard of Rod Serling in their lives and have no interest in '60s nostalgia.

    That's why I suggested Singer as the host instead of some lookalike type like Hamm or Wasser. Instead of trying to copy Serling himself, my suggestion was to capture the same general thing that Serling represented -- the creator of the work addressing us personally and presenting his creation to us -- while making it about the creator of this version of the show, a filmmaker who's known and relevant to today's audiences.

    I mean, we've already seen Singer try to imitate someone else's work -- in Superman Returns -- and the results were disappointing. I don't want to see Singer trying to make Rod Serling's TZ, I want to see him make Bryan Singer's TZ. (Okay, yeah, I did say before that I liked JMS's syndicated version because he was a good Serling mimic. But he was also being true to himself, I think; they're rather similar writers in a lot of ways. They both wrote the vast majority of their landmark genre shows -- TZ and B5 -- and they both wrote by dictation. And both had the same problem that eventually all their scripts sounded like them talking to themselves.)
     
  6. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    ^^ That's not necessarily a problem. There's nothing wrong with stylized writing or pseudo-Socratic dialogue. If it's done well. People like Serling and JMS do it well. Others, like Chris Claremont, do not.

    I'm dubious about the idea of recreating Serling, either through re-use of old recordings or CGI and mimicry-- that would be too gimmicky at this point since it still couldn't be done photorealistically. Although I think it would be fine to re-use his opening narrations in the title sequence.

    The best thing about Twilight Zone: The Movie (along with the prologue) was that they used Burgess Meredith as narrator, since he had a strong history with TZ. I don't think there's anyone around now who could fill that role. Bryan Singer may be the producer on the new show, but he's still following in Serling's footsteps. If he has the proper screen presence, he'd be fine, but any other host who can deliver the proper ambiance would do just as well.
     
  7. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Again, the key to making a new version successful is not merely to try to imitate the original, but to do a modern version of the same sort of thing it did. It's not about copying Serling's look or his writing style or whatever -- it's about following his lead and creating an anthology of intelligent, literate fantasy stories that serve as insightful allegories about the issues that face our world today. Many of which are adapted from prose stories by some of the top SF/fantasy authors of the day, often by the authors themselves. And which are done by talented, accomplished actors and feature solid production values, visual and makeup effects, and music.
     
  8. E-DUB

    E-DUB Captain Captain

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    Since someone has mentioned "Palladin of the Lost Hour", I'd also like to toss it "Message from Charity", "The Star", and "The Last Defender of Camelot" as great segments of the Eighties incarnation of TZ.
     
  9. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    And this. :)

    [yt]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFIQulYOWN4[/yt]

    Avery Brooks?
     
  10. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    ^^ He'd be a good choice. I was also thinking of Michio Kaku.

    What I said was that stylized writing is not a bad thing-- in fact, it's a good thing. Aside from that, there are several ways that one can successfully approach a continuation. One is as you say, to utilize contemporary styles (e.g. bland color palette, shaky cam, Bendis-style dialogue) to make the concept relevant to a contemporary audience. The other is to do an homage, to use the distinctive writing and cinematography of the original to tell contemporary stories. On an artistic level, either could work, although the former is more likely to be financially successful.

    "The Star" is one of my favorite stories and I was pretty happy with the adaptation, although they did soften up the ending a bit.
     
  11. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    And I wasn't responding to that part of your post. I was chiming in to agree with your point that recreating Serling would be a mistake -- while questioning whether it would be a good idea to include his original opening narration. (The '80s version just gave us a brief glimpse of him in its titles.)


    That is not what I said at all. I was talking about relevant issues, not stylistic aspects (and certainly not those stylistic aspects). Serling used TZ as metaphor to tackle then-current issues in a way he'd been unable to get past network censors in his prior work, issues like racism and the Vietnam War. A modern show could tackle contemporary issues like the rise of the surveillance state, the growing extremism on the political right, the dangers of climate-change denialism, etc. Stories that would say something about the world we live in and make people think.
     
  12. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Commodore Commodore

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    Yawn. Get ready for a quick canellation, then the expected trip to the 5 dollar dvd bin at Wal-Mart.
     
  13. Morpheus 02

    Morpheus 02 Commodore Commodore

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    It seems to me that the extremism of the political left is what requires the subtelty of the Twilight Zone to make it past modern "censors". :bolian: (But stories criticisng the political right (with specific strains) would also be appropriate.)

    I look forward to the attempt, and have high hopes of Bryan Singer....some great other suggestions for hosts, including yours of SInger (for some good reasons). I think SOME kind of narration is helpful to help the audience think about what they just saw...
     
  14. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Commodore Commodore

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    Today's audiences are far too cynical to tolerate that, as the past 20 years of TV has been overrun with series preaching ideology (usually from one point of view), to the point where the announcement of another series attemmpting to do the same would inspire as much as interest as watching grass grow.

    This has been a problem with some I know who followed the current era Doctor Who series (and moreso with the spinoff Torchwood); after a time, they grew weary due to what they felt was a case of being "hit over the head" by producer politics.

    Unlike the 1960s when issues had not become the prime element in TZ plotting, the current soapbox mentality of so many shows would simply render a new TZ as irritating, rather than entertaining or even thoughtful.
     
  15. stj

    stj Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Unquestioning acceptance of what is, is a conservative political message. Thinking the producers who default to convention are just tall, instead of standing on their own soapboxes, is naive.
     
  16. E-DUB

    E-DUB Captain Captain

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    Writers are typical liberal, TV execs are usually conservative, especially when it comes to the medium itself. I love stories with a political message as long as, and this is important, the message doesn't overwhelm the story. The original TZ, and for that matter Star Trek, often lost sight of this particular dictum and therefore came across as preachy. Have a point, by all means but don't drive it home with a sledgehammer.
     
  17. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

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    Obviously this is being called The Twilight Zone to capitalize on the original's brand recognition. I don't have a problem with that; the original has been extremely well preserved for a television series from the 1959-1964, and if stealing the name is what it takes to get a sf/fantasy/horror anthology series aimed at adults on the air, so be it.

    What this series will need to succeed, of course, is good writing. The UPN version was often mediocre in that regard, and it critically wounded that version of the series, despite the effort it exerted to replicate the original's format.

    Hopefully this new series will do what the original did best -- tell a mix of original stories and adaptations of short stories that are suited to the screen. What I don't want to see are many remakes of earlier episodes. Given the availability and excellence of much of the original series, that would be a supreme waste of time.
     
  18. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    ^^ Yeah, no remakes.

    Well, I agree with that.

    Extremism in general should be the target and high standards should be the ammunition.
     
  19. Vendikarr

    Vendikarr Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I would like to see them use Twilight Zone by Golden Earring. It's got a great sounding instrumental segment that would be perfect.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eP05iSzpz94
     
  20. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    That's one of my favorite songs and videos, but I wouldn't use it for a Twilight Zone series.