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Walter Koenig: More Babylon 5?

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  • DGTWoodward
    replied
    Originally posted by Jan View Post
    This was posted while I was answering strashiLOL so I'm granting myself a dispensation for double posting.


    It's really quite a bit simpler than that. IF he were in negotiation for anything of the sort, it'd be a bad tactic to give the impression to the other side of the negotiation any reason to assume that he wants the deal badly. It would put him at a distinct disadvantage.

    Jan
    Sorry, I missed that post, but yes that too is a good point.

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  • Jan
    replied
    This was posted while I was answering strashiLOL so I'm granting myself a dispensation for double posting.
    Originally posted by DGTWoodward View Post
    If...IF he is in talks to acquire the full rights to B5 (already having the film rights) I am sure that he would be prohibited by the same gag he was under re the recently failed reboot attempt.
    It's really quite a bit simpler than that. IF he were in negotiation for anything of the sort, it'd be a bad tactic to give the impression to the other side of the negotiation any reason to assume that he wants the deal badly. It would put him at a distinct disadvantage.

    Jan

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  • Jan
    replied
    Originally posted by strashiLOL
    So in my mind, if there are no such negotiations going on at the moment, JMS' comment did very little cleaning up-wise; it served more to cool down the fans' expectations and reiterate once again that there would be no new B5 in the next few years.
    Depends on what kind of mess you're talking about. Just as an example, I've got a Google Alert set for 'Straczynski' (yes, folks, that's my 'secret' for finding articles and interviews as fast as I do. ). In the past 2 days I've gotten no fewer than 12 emails having to do with what Walter said, some with multiple article links. Does JMS have the same? I don't have any way of knowing but it wouldn't surprise me since he's mentioned a few times before that he hadn't heard some particular bit of news until it showed up online. Might he have one for 'Babylon 5', too? Maybe even one for friends like Walter who are also celebs in their own right? With just those 3 search terms that would automatically mean over 30 emails. And don't forget that his email address is very public. What do you think happened to his emails from individual fans?

    And keep in mind that nowhere *near* as many fans will see his statement that Walter misspoke. That's shown up in only two of my emails since last night. So the speculation and emails and gossip will be continuing for at least a while longer. Probably a number of folks won't hear about what Walter said until they hear the upcoming (in a week or so) Babylon Podcast for show #248 where there was speculation about it for several minutes.

    No matter what, it boils down to time that JMS had/has to spend doing rumor control that he might have better spent writing. That's at least enough of a mess that he felt he needed to comment.

    Jan

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  • DGTWoodward
    replied
    And it is in the gaps between those things...

    What he actually meant
    What he actually said
    What he did not actually say
    How he phrased what he did said

    ...that the 'innumerable chasms of differing interpretations' can open. Many people here have intimated that JMS can easily say one thing, and it easily mean something else entirely.

    Some times, what a person does not say is just as important as the words themselves.

    Such is the true skill of a writer. He gives a good answer. It just might not be to the right question.

    JMS recently taught me that the gap between assumption and actual intent is vast and that he could create whole universes in those spaces. It was not a lesson I (strictly speaking) needed to be told, but it does fit this situation in that...

    He HAS made it clear that for now there is no new B5 coming any time soon.
    He HAS made it clear that there is a 'good faith' early negotiation beginning with WB, regarding (more of a business than actual on-screen aspect of) B5.

    If...IF he is in talks to acquire the full rights to B5 (already having the film rights) I am sure that he would be prohibited by the same gag he was under re the recently failed reboot attempt.

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  • Jan
    replied
    Originally posted by strashiLOL
    Also, correct me if I'm wrong (English is neither the first nor even my second language), but doesn't the word "misspoke" imply that the person in question has a basically correct understanding of the situation, it's just that his choice of words was unfortunate enough to create false impressions in his listeners?
    I mean, if I was in no negotiations to acquire the rights to some product, and one of my friends made a public statement claiming otherwise, I would use the word "misunderstood". Wouldn't you? But then again, maybe I lack understanding of the nuances of the language.
    Also, we don't know what the CBR's original question was. Did they provide JMS with the full text of Walter's statement, or just asked him if he had any new B5 in the works?
    My (strictly) personal interpretation of JMS' comment goes something like this: "Walter's a friend of mine and he said something that's caused a major storm of speculation among fans and now I've got to clean up the mess but I hate to just come out and say that Walter doesn't know what the heck he's talking about so I'll just say that he misspoke and repeat what I said weeks ago that there's no new B5 in the works or currently under negotiation." See? JMS's a writer so he doesn't have to use nearly as many words as I do.

    As for whether CBR had provided JMS with the full text of Walter's statement, I think we'd be underestimating JMS' 'net savvy extremely if he hadn't already known exactly what Walter was being quoted as saying. Even so, I'm sure that any email asking about it would have included the reason why they were asking JMS for comment.

    Jan

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  • Jan
    replied
    Originally posted by strashiLOL
    If anything, calling an actor by the name of one of his characters is a testament to his skills as a thespian.
    Though if you personally find this offensive, I will refrain myself from calling him in this manner.
    <much more my usual sunny self this morning>
    Thanks. And while I see your point, the reason why I reacted the way I did stems in large part from listening to the B5 DVD commentaries. In those, any time Jerry Doyle was involved with one and Stephen Furst would come onscreen as Vir, Jerry'd inevitably exclaim "Flounder!" or make comments about Stephen's part in Animal House. I found that to be the complete opposite of respectful to the work that Stephen did portraying Vir.

    Jan

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  • Jan
    replied
    Originally posted by Triple F View Post
    My bad, you could be right, I did the naughty and assumed since the wording from the article and what jms said on facebook is very similar (identical) û and it seems a rather short statement to specifically make to Comic Book Resources!?
    I don't know for sure, of course, but I figured somebody at CBR emailed JMS for comment. JMS has done quite a few interviews with them so it seems likely.

    Jan

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  • Triple F
    replied
    Originally posted by Jan View Post
    I can't be certain of the timing but I saw the CBR article at least an hour or two ahead of JMS's post on Facebook.

    Jan
    My bad, you could be right, I did the naughty and assumed since the wording from the article and what jms said on facebook is very similar (identical) – and it seems a rather short statement to specifically make to Comic Book Resources!?
    Last edited by Triple F; 08-18-2011, 08:24 PM.

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  • Jan
    replied
    Originally posted by Triple F View Post
    He never said (so far at least) ôthatÆs simply not the caseö and it looks like that site is lifting quotes from facebook and saying that theyÆre part of a statement to THEIR site. Bunch of cowboys by the look of it. ; )
    I can't be certain of the timing but I saw the CBR article at least an hour or two ahead of JMS's post on Facebook.

    Jan

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  • Triple F
    replied
    ItÆs interesting, unfortunate and sooo very typical that the quoted article makes a rather big assumption and puts it right in front of the opening bit of what jms actually said on facebook. They put words in his mouth. ; ) (Highlight added by me)

    Straczynski, however, said thatÆs simply not the case. ôWalter misspoke,ö he said this afternoon in a statement to Spinoff Online. ôI am not in negotiations with WB to develop more Babylon 5."
    He never said (so far at least) ôthatÆs simply not the caseö and it looks like that site is lifting quotes from facebook and saying that theyÆre part of a statement to THEIR site. Bunch of cowboys by the look of it. ; )


    @ Jan
    ThereÆs no ambiguity. jms said Walter mispoke and then provided a clarifying statement . . . . . about not being in negotiations about developing something B5. Didn't say anything about negotiaqtions about the rights. But your correct of course. It's all just talking to ourselves in the rain (including yourself, and what you think jms meant ; ).

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  • Jan
    replied
    Originally posted by strashiLOL
    Eeeexactly! Actually, for what it's worth, JMS' reply confirms what Bester said, or at least implies that it's true.
    <annoyed>Who's this Bester you keep referring to? It's rather rude to constantly call Walter Koenig by the wrong name.

    And what part of "Walter misspoke" is ambiguous?

    Let it go people. You're beating a dead horse.

    Jan

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  • Triple F
    replied
    Originally posted by vlassisp View Post
    Correct me if I am wrong, but from what I can understand, WB can't do anything new with B5 without JMS's cooperation. They can't put somebody else to rewrite it, or expand it, or even remake it without JMS's permission.
    I can see how this can be confusing, as I’ve wondered myself. I see what your saying Jan/Joe, but jms has made a few statements around what rights he has with regard to any new B5 series, with this being the most direct.

    http://jmsnews.com/msg.aspx?id=1-17011
    Well, yeah, I did create the series, executive produce it, write 91 out of 110 episodes, and I do control many of the rights. And no deal can go forward without my involvement. By contract, if it doesn't happen with me, it doesn't happen. I still don't see what that has to do with anything, however.
    It does seem to indicate (especially when reading the full reply) that there’s more to it than just getting some payment from WB if they decided to go and do a B5 series with another writer.

    And jms saying
    “Walter misspoke: I am not in negotiations with WB to develop more Babylon 5.”

    Isn’t actually a reply to the main point of what Walter said
    “[Straczynski] told me that he is in negations to re-acquire the rights to Babylon 5 and it looks pretty good. Now what that portends I am not entirely sure. It could be a new series or it could be a feature film, but he was quite animated about it. He seemed very excited and Warner Bros. is dealing with him in good faith. So you might see another Babylon 5 in the not-too-distant future.”

    As someone else mentioned, negotiations to develop more B5 and negotiations to re-acquire the rights are two different things – and I’ve come to realise that jms can walk a very very fine line when wording his replies. ; )
    Last edited by Triple F; 08-18-2011, 07:45 PM.

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  • Joe Nazzaro
    replied
    Warners can do a B5 re-boot without the slightest involvement. If you think this sort of thing is incomprehensible, just look at the new a few months ago of a Buffy re-boot without Joss Whedon. Should a studio re-boot a popular franchise without the help of the person that created it? Probably not? Will they risk of a very vocal fandom that will do anything they can to stop it? Absolutely? But frankly, I'm not sure it would stop a group of of studio executives hell-bent on a course of self-destruction.

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  • Jan
    replied
    Theoretically, that's correct. In the case of B5, though, there'd very likely be a major fan backlash so it would be a risk for them. There was far less 'canon' established for the original BSG.

    Jan

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  • vlassisp
    replied
    So WB can effectively ignore JMS any time they want and hire someone else to rewrite it? Just like Galactica, when the studio totally ignored Larson and hired Ronald D. Moore for the reboot?

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