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Babylon 5 Movie through Studio JMS

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  • My feeling is that the script will get written this year, but where it goes, or more to the point, how fast it progresses from there is anyone's guess. I would think perhaps 2-3 years from now if all goes well?!? A script would be the first step, then there’s the not insignificant task of securing backers and funding / or a studio to produce the film, then a suitable director and a cast that would do it justice.

    I think that securing funding and/or a backing from a studio will be the really hard part. If we look at Joe’s other pet project ‘The Flickering Light’, it’s perhaps not encouraging that it’s still no closer to being made. And, to me, that had a better chance of getting made than a B5 feature film.

    The best shot a B5 film would have, would be if WB showed interest and pushed the project forward. We know they’d like a big SF project that could be their next ‘trilogy’, or ongoing series of films, so who knows…

    Still, I’ll keep my fingers crossed and my eyes on the sky. It’ll be an uphill battle, but Joe is definitely good at fighting those.
    Last edited by Ubik; 03-17-2015, 05:33 AM.
    Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

    Kosh: Good!

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    • Originally posted by Jan View Post
      Ummm... It's only March for heaven's sake!

      And remember that we just this week got news (see the 'Interesting JMS posts' thread in General Discussions) that he's got a new spec script making the rounds. So we know he managed to find that time someplace - why wouldn't he be able to do so for Babylon 5? I swear the man has a pocket universe tucked away someplace for all of the scripts he manages to churn out!

      I really don't think we can expect any word any time soon. It sucks, but there's also no indication that JMS has changed his mind.

      Jan

      "giggles" How long ago did he say he wanted to do it? Last summer sometime? Time moves soooooooo slowly. It feels like it's been forever, already.

      *edited to not sound so weird*
      Last edited by Delenn_of_Mir; 03-18-2015, 03:37 PM.

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      • Originally posted by Delenn_of_Mir View Post
        So to me if someone says they're going to do something and then never mention it again I assume they've forgotten or changed their mind. It would just make me feel better if Joe said something about it once in a while.

        It's an interesting idea to assume someone will do what they said unless they say they're not going to do it. Is that how normal brains think?
        Well, it's not a bad default to assume that they will in normal circumstances. Now, in show business, there are SO many variables, it's best to be aware of what's under JMS' control and what's not. We know for sure he'll write the script but after that there are the finances and distribution to work out. Distribution shouldn't be any trouble but finances could be (though he seemed pretty confident).

        I think we should just figure that he'll let us know when there's news. And hope it's *soon*!

        Jan
        "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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        • Alien Nation reboot coming; X-Files reboot is a "Go". How many more 90's shows are coming back before the B5 reboot? JMS might be too late to this party if he doesn't get this done ASAP. My guess is if we keep hearing the word "reboot" and none of the are big successes, which I doubt they will be, it could doom a B5 reboot getting the moola JMS needs if he takes too long. Sorry to bring up something negative, but when I read the Alien Nation reboot news this morning it just added to the pile. It seems every week we hear about something being rebooted. I guess I would feel better if WB was already on board with JMS. The fact that he thinks he can raise the money without them is fine, but that is today. A string of reboot failures in the next couple years could cause what he can get done today to disappear tomorrow. (OKAY SO I HIT THE PANIC BUTTON, BUT HE NEEDS TO REASSURE MY INSECURITIES WITH A MOVIE UPDATE.)

          BTW I love the original Alien Nation, but how obvious is it that they want to milk a franchise that will be cheap to make with today's effects.
          Susan Ivanova, "I'll be in the car."

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          • Originally posted by Looney View Post
            The fact that he thinks he can raise the money without them is fine, but that is today. A string of reboot failures in the next couple years could cause what he can get done today to disappear tomorrow. (OKAY SO I HIT THE PANIC BUTTON, BUT HE NEEDS TO REASSURE MY INSECURITIES WITH A MOVIE UPDATE.)
            What's to report, though? "I still plan on writing a movie script this year but haven't gotten to it yet."? As for the 'raising money', remember he's not necessarily looking for investors for just the movie but for the studio in general. For the most part, the investors won't have much say in how the money's spent, though of course they'll need to know the general purpose and goals.

            Jan
            "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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            • Originally posted by Jan View Post
              What's to report, though? "I still plan on writing a movie script this year but haven't gotten to it yet."? As for the 'raising money', remember he's not necessarily looking for investors for just the movie but for the studio in general. For the most part, the investors won't have much say in how the money's spent, though of course they'll need to know the general purpose and goals.

              Jan
              HA! How about the script is done?! And if investors in the studio in general know that the studio is planning to fund a reboot in a time of failed reboots and so on and so on. Anyway like I said, I just hit the panic button.

              And did you get my PM Jan?
              Susan Ivanova, "I'll be in the car."

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              • There always have been and always will be reboots and remakes. I don't think they'll ever fall out of style.

                Got your PM and just answered. Sorry for the delay!

                Jan
                "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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                • As for the 'raising money', remember he's not necessarily looking for investors for just the movie but for the studio in general. For the most part, the investors won't have much say in how the money's spent, though of course they'll need to know the general purpose and goals.
                  Really!? I don’t know how Hollywood works, but that seems to be a bit of an unbelievable idea. A group of (presumably) professional and experienced investors will just hand over 100million + to jms and “won’t have much say in how the money is spent”…….. I know it’s sometimes referred to as the dream factory, but no, I don’t think that’s how it works. Why am I getting flash backs and the song “Spring time for Hitler” in my head.

                  The flip side to what Looney said (which is a genuine concern I think), is all that it takes is for one of those reboots to be a success, and the number of them will probably mushroom in an attempt to find another.

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                  • Originally posted by Triple F View Post
                    Really!? I don’t know how Hollywood works, but that seems to be a bit of an unbelievable idea. A group of (presumably) professional and experienced investors will just hand over 100million + to jms and “won’t have much say in how the money is spent”…….. I know it’s sometimes referred to as the dream factory, but no, I don’t think that’s how it works.
                    Whoever owns 51% of the company gets to decide what happens. Doesn't matter if it's a corner store or megabusiness, that's how it works. Obviously there would be business plans and the investors would have to be comfortable with the vision and prospects for the company but they won't have any real decision making power any more than shareholders have over (for instance) Heinz over what new product they're going to introduce. If the investors don't like it, they can sell their shares but that's about it.

                    Jan
                    "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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                    • But wouldn’t this kind of financing be more akin to a bank lending money to a business. The business plan wouldn’t be limited to saying something like ‘we’re a production studio’. It would have to include why they want the money, and a detailed breakdown of what they’re going to spend it on.

                      I’d be surprised if the (most likely experienced in the entertainment industry) investors didn’t also install an accountant and possibly an experienced management team to ensure that the money is used for purpose….. Then again they might just – because this is what doing otherwise basically amounts to - take jms’s word that he has some kick ass ideas were to spend the money. Come on Jan, your kidding yourself on if you think large scale professional investors won’t involve themselves in what jms will be doing (including looking at the market), and that involvement will be on-going.

                      Saying that. The involvement doesn’t necessarily have to go as deep as providing notes like a studio does, when something is in production (but I wouldn’t rule it out). So at an artistic level, these investors might give jms a fair amount of freedom. But to suggest they’ll hand over the cash and then don’t have much say in what it is spent on is, I’d suggest, naive in the extreme.

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                      • All I can tell you is that he said he was looking for investors. Not a loan. Two different terms with two different connotations. And in financial investment terms, getting ten people tot put up two hundred million dollars isn't large scale at all.

                        I'm thinking it's more likely to be along the lines of JMS picking up the phone and saying, "Hey, [insert incredibly wealthy showbiz mogul here], I was just thinking about that script you bought from me a while ago for [lots and lots of money] and I wanted to give you a shot at investing in this studio I've started. It's a multi-format company for producing films and TV and comics and stuff. So far it's made the upcoming 'Sense8' for Netflix and there are two others in pre-production. Next year I'm thinking of starting work on a couple of movies. Does that interest you at all? How about I send you a prospectus?"

                        ETA: Needless to say, this is all the sheerest speculation.

                        Jan
                        Last edited by Jan; 03-27-2015, 07:26 AM.
                        "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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                        • I was surprised to find out that the US Securities and Exchange Commission regulates investment in films. Those regulations have been loosened today.

                          Why Mom-and-Pop Film Funding May Not Be Good for Hollywood
                          Movies | By Todd Cunningham on March 27, 2015 @ 5:00 am
                          http://www.thewrap.com/why-mom-and-p...for-hollywood/

                          When mainstream investors lose their money, or get bilked and sue, it’s going to make trouble for the movie biz

                          John and Joanne Q. Public can bankroll movies now and count on getting rich doing it, thanks to the approval of a key provision in President Obama’s JOBS Act this week that allows nearly every American to invest in films and other startup businesses.

                          But the new regulations approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission aren’t necessarily a good thing for the public. First, they may not be able to afford qualifying. And if they do qualify, they’re far more likely to lose money than they are to get rich in the extremely high-return, higher-risk film business.

                          While lowering the standards that formerly restricted film investing to the wealthy in order to protect the little guy creates a new revenue stream, both indies and the studios could be hurt in the long run. ...
                          Last edited by Dan Dassow; 03-27-2015, 05:55 PM. Reason: Original post munched

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                          • Have there been hints at exactly how much money where looking at? the typical mega blockbuster seems to be $150+ million but I'm not sure that's essential with B5.

                            Obviously changes could be made but the advantage of this kind of production in the first place was that the production wasn't THAT expensive, less need for massive sets and space battle FX can be good deal simpler and that a lot of more "personal" FX work(CGI characters for example).

                            With todays technology I would think JMS could put something pretty impression together with $50 million and that lowers the threshold for success significantly.
                            Who are you?
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                            • When he announced the movie he said

                              Originally posted by JMS
                              And we’ll use that to parlay serious investment in the studio. I’m not talking Kickstarter, I’m talking about one hundred million dollars, two hundred million dollars; we already have people who are lined up and interested in doing that.
                              And afterwards he clarified that for the B5 movie itself he's looking at $80-100 million.

                              Jan
                              "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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                              • Which does seem more realistic than the $150-200 million for the really top of the tree releases although it is getting to the level where your talking serious takings to turn a profit, likely well beyond an existing B5 fanbase.
                                Last edited by moreorless; 03-30-2015, 12:24 AM.
                                Who are you?
                                What do you want?
                                What is the average inflight speed of an unladened swallow?

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