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Babylon 5 Movie through Studio JMS

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  • It’s interesting that the pull or influence of emerging foreign markets has been mentioned – and how that is having an effect on US based movie makers, and the material they’ve produced in recent years.

    I don’t follow the news enough to make too much of a comment on the pro’s and con’s on that. But they’re certainly players, and a factor when it comes to some of the jms related projects which have been announced.

    Remember the film adaptation of some upcoming graphic novel with Graphic India announced in 2014. Did anything ever come of “Titans”? Either way jms said of it…..

    https://www.yahoo.com/movies/comic-c...003815152.html

    “In an increasingly international marketplace, Titans represents the kind of multinational storytelling that will play an ever more important role in both film and publishing. Sharad Devarajan and Gotham Chopra have been extremely supportive of this story, and Peter Chernin is exactly the right person to shepherd this into a successful film franchise.”

    I’m guessing this was one of the projects hoped to increase the “street cred” by now (as was Red Mars), but it seems to be going nowhere with his recent announcement of no more comic work (which the film was to be based on). When taken with the international nature of Sense8, Joe is certainly not only looking but actively courting the international market and the funding possibilities therein (Netflix money is money derived – in no small part - from international sales).

    MGM optioning Rising Stars is interesting, as is the involvement of the production company Atlas Entertainment who have been recently involved with a string of Marvel comic movies – Batman v Superman, Suicide Squad and Wonder Woman (which is already being rumoured to be another mess, and relative flop waiting to happen). I mention that because the reasons seem to be that it’s down to Studio interference…. and some of that *might* be down to massaging things for the growing foreign markets. The premise of Rising stars, when looked at what’s even on the TV these days, doesn’t look as interesting, innovative and new as it once did….. I’ve got a terrible feeling that the increasingly cynical and pissed off (US at least) movie goer will view it as “just another” superhero (or metahuman) idea trying to cash in on the popularity of that particular genre right now.

    Anyway. I don’t have the first clue about how the funding of a movie comes about. But it’s clear that Studio JMS, at this point at least, isn’t going to be the lead production company on the Rising Stars movie, or indeed the tv adaptation of Midnight Nation (Gale Ann Hurd and here Pacific Western Productions are the main ones on that). So the odds are good that if even if Studio JMS’s “street cred” is raised with those being made and being any kind of success, I still suspect that investors will only get involved in a Babylon 5 movie if other production companies are involved – you rarely see a movie with only one production company….. and that raises a question in itself.

    Midnight Nation and The Twelve might be great comic books, but they have nothing like the fan base or public awareness of Babylon 5…… So why are two relatively obscure comics getting funding for movies and TV shows and the far more well known Babylon 5 is not……. If it’s because of some silliness with Warner Bros. then what will have changed in 3, 4, or 5 years? I just don’t see how even a successful Studio JMS can make the movie without Warner Bros. involvement.

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    • Originally posted by Triple F View Post
      Remember the film adaptation of some upcoming graphic novel with Graphic India announced in 2014. Did anything ever come of “Titans”? Either way jms said of it…..

      https://www.yahoo.com/movies/comic-c...003815152.html

      “In an increasingly international marketplace, Titans represents the kind of multinational storytelling that will play an ever more important role in both film and publishing. Sharad Devarajan and Gotham Chopra have been extremely supportive of this story, and Peter Chernin is exactly the right person to shepherd this into a successful film franchise.”
      JMS mentioned that as one of two possible comics projects that might still be in the pipeline when he announced his departure from comics. The other was with DC so I'm assuming that it was the Flash: Earth One graphic novel. He didn't give a status on 'Titans' so it may be wandering the halls of Development Hell.
      "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

      Comment


      • Originally posted by Jan View Post
        And you keep saying 'based on' Sense8 when the whole discussion is about *building* credibility by adding additional credits.
        When I was saying that I meant using Sense 8 specifically toward building credibility. I think you need to go back to when he originally announced the B5 movie and read between the lines. He definitely thought Sense 8 was going to put him over the top on the "Street Cred" front. But I was just saying how Sense 8 specifically relates to his ability to raise money. Of course he has plenty of other projects to build that credibility. I was singling out Sense 8 because it was the one I was singling out at the moment; I wasn't saying it was the only thing helping or hindering his plans.
        Susan Ivanova, "I'll be in the car."

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        • Originally posted by Looney View Post
          When I was saying that I meant using Sense 8 specifically toward building credibility. I think you need to go back to when he originally announced the B5 movie and read between the lines. He definitely thought Sense 8 was going to put him over the top on the "Street Cred" front. But I was just saying how Sense 8 specifically relates to his ability to raise money. Of course he has plenty of other projects to build that credibility. I was singling out Sense 8 because it was the one I was singling out at the moment; I wasn't saying it was the only thing helping or hindering his plans.
          Sigh...seems like I just had this conversation elsewhere with somebody else. Why would I 'read between the lines' when I've got what he actually said and it's almost word-for-word what he said two years ago?!? No, he *specifically* said that it would take more TV shows and more movies to attract that level of investor. That's what he *said*. Twice. Here, let me remind you of his exact words:

          Originally posted by JMS
          Here’s the plan: We’re going to have, through Studio JMS, at least two, maybe three TV series on the air next year. We’re going to have at least one or two movies going ahead. And we’ll use that to parlay serious investment in the studio.
          Now...show me what there is to read between the lines about in that statement which is essentially what he said at SDCC a few weeks ago.
          "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

          Comment


          • Originally posted by Jan View Post
            Now...show me what there is to read between the lines about in that statement which is essentially what he said at SDCC a few weeks ago.
            Wait A Minute ! ! ! I only said read between the lines of ALL the stuff he was saying before Sense 8 was released.

            P.S. Does anyone know the best place to get some B5 ringtones and alert tones for iPhone? iTunes store and Zedge are pretty weak in that department.
            Susan Ivanova, "I'll be in the car."

            Comment


            • Sense8 is popular enough going by the number of votes on imdb and the activity I've seen on forums, social media, etc. Not a gigantic success, but certainly bigger than some other shows. Granted it has a pretty big budget so its fairly decent popularity just might not be good enough for a third season or whatever (let's hope that's not the case), but that's beside the point of "building street cred".

              I also hope for better reviews for the second season now that reviewers are (hopefully) familiar with it, because quite a lot of the initial reviews were mixed or negative because "it just doesn't make sense". I'm sure if they eventually watched the rest of the episodes they must have understood that it makes perfect sense, so the next season should review better if it retains the same quality. (And I hope if they didn't watch the rest of the episodes they won't review the second season because that would be beyond idiotic......) Better reviews too will help build street cred.

              But more than anything else what would help would be JMS making a movie, even if it's not high budget. If he directs it, even if he has no intention to direct the B5 movie, even better for him (assuming it is successful).

              The Flickering Light was shelved to make Sense8. Maybe he should unearth it.
              Last edited by sense8ional; 08-20-2016, 06:52 AM.
              My posts are my own opinion and do not represent JMSNews.com's opinions or views. As it's written under my handle I'm "just a fan".

              Comment


              • I don’t think that Sense8 was viewed as putting him over the edge as far as “street cred” for studio jms goes….. I imagine it’s viewed as a step towards it though. The confident no nonsense wording of the announcement of a B5 movie and the timetable behind it – including that a script would have been written by now – was to get folks to sit up and notice what he was saying at that comic con…. And it worked, there were hundreds of articles on it, which also mentioned his new project, Sense8…… Was that announcement to get column inches for Sense8?….. I’m on the side of the fence that says, yeah, probably. He’s a producer who knows how to work the system and knows full well news of any kind of movement relating to Babylon 5 will generate interest.

                Agree or not, Babylon 5 is his signature piece and that, even now, is of more interest to more people than anything else he might want to talk about. Or at least, it will generate more (mainstream) column inches than something like Sense8.

                The quote you pointed out Jan, is of course correct. But the sentence that you missed out immediately following it says this (emphasis added by me)…..

                Here’s the plan: We’re going to have, through Studio JMS, at least two, maybe three TV series on the air next year. We’re going to have at least one or two movies going ahead. 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.

                It’s that statement that a script was going to be written, and folks interested in backing a B5 movie are already lined up which makes the more recent one (two years later) so much of a downer. Yes, the plan was to get stuff out by now, and that hasn’t happened yet.…… But while I might not necessarily agree with it….. I can certainly see why some wish he wouldn’t say anything if it was so dependant (and vulnerable) to ifs and maybes.

                Which again, makes such a confident – it’s going to happen - announcement seem all the more like it was motivated by generating column inches for sense8.

                I know saying that suggests jms is being manipulative…. Well, what’s wrong with that!? He’s an executive producer with his own production company, and he’d be a piss poor one if he never used the media to best advantage.

                Comment


                • To be honest, much as I love the show, I don't think Babylon 5 is really all that popular or well-known these days, certainly not to the degree where it would make sense to use it to promote Sense8. It doesn't have the place in geek culture of, say, Firefly. Given the involvement of the Wachowskis, and it being a Netflix production, I'm not sure that the minor press generated by the idea of B5 movie would be particularly significant, PR-wise.
                  Jonas Kyratzes | Lands of Dream

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by Jonas View Post
                    To be honest, much as I love the show, I don't think Babylon 5 is really all that popular or well-known these days, certainly not to the degree where it would make sense to use it to promote Sense8. It doesn't have the place in geek culture of, say, Firefly. Given the involvement of the Wachowskis, and it being a Netflix production, I'm not sure that the minor press generated by the idea of B5 movie would be particularly significant, PR-wise.
                    In the grand scheme of things B5 really isn't that popular or well acknowledged in most contemporary 'geek' circles. When i name drop B5 as a show I love in conversations with my friends, I generally have to defend it, or talk them into checking it out.

                    B5 has been the brunt of enough pop culture jokes, (Spaced, Big Bang Theory and Breaking Bad) that most people just assume it's really bad and corny. Their loss, but that's the general preconception you're up against. The slightly uneven nature of S1 also does little to help that, and without a bit of hand holding and assurance that 'it gets a lot better', most people never get far enough to appreciate how great it is.

                    It's a shame, but a B5 movie is going to be a hard sell regardless of elevated street cred or not. More obscure things have been rebooted into films though!
                    Last edited by Ubik; 09-07-2016, 05:15 AM.
                    Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

                    Kosh: Good!

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by Ubik View Post
                      B5 has been the brunt of enough pop culture jokes, (Spaced, Big Bang Theory, and Breaking Bad)
                      Is it a joke in The Big Bang Theory? I don't think so. From what I recall everyone in the group, except Sheldon, loves Babylon 5. I don't see that as a joke since the other members of the group are more toward the norm of society than Sheldon. If anything I think that says The Big Bang Theory is proclaiming Babylon 5 is a great show. I think it is high time The Big Bang Theory had some B5 guest stars that Sheldon could declare are his enemies.
                      Susan Ivanova, "I'll be in the car."

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by Looney View Post
                        Is it a joke in The Big Bang Theory? I don't think so. From what I recall everyone in the group, except Sheldon, loves Babylon 5. I don't see that as a joke since the other members of the group are more toward the norm of society than Sheldon. If anything I think that says The Big Bang Theory is proclaiming Babylon 5 is a great show. I think it is high time The Big Bang Theory had some B5 guest stars that Sheldon could declare are his enemies.
                        None of those shows really rag on B5 too badly, but it is used as a touchstone and as a 'marmite' show. Big Bang Theory seems to operate on an 'insert nerd reference' style of humour which bugs the hell out of me. So I think it's part of the wider 'joke' which forms the show's DNA. Personally, I despise it, it takes nerd culture and appropriates it for the cheapest of laughs.

                        Even with Spaced, in context the character is doing it to get fired from his job, so insulting B5 is clearly high treason! The sword cuts both ways. But people always remember the one liner "Babylon 5 is a big pile of shit". In context it's very funny, and knowing, but a lot of people forget the context and only the statement remains!

                        Regardless of bias, B5 has become a bit of a pop culture footnote and occasional reference used for humorous purposes.
                        Last edited by Ubik; 09-07-2016, 08:23 AM.
                        Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

                        Kosh: Good!

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                        • Personally while in real life I never heard anyone mentioning Babylon 5, online I've always been reading largely good things about the show in the various communities I've been a part of with some calling it their favorite space scifi show.

                          That being said I'd definitely say it's kind of an obscure show today, but that's at least partly because it's not on most (any?) streaming Netflix-like sites and the DVDs are ancient as well. I know it's available for purchase on Amazon Instant Video for example but that's not quite the same as having it available on Netflix. A re-release of B5 is long overdue and they can absolutely do quite a bit better than the currently available DVDs (perfect.. no, better.. yes they can) without breaking the bank, contrary to popular belief.
                          Last edited by sense8ional; 09-07-2016, 12:52 PM.
                          My posts are my own opinion and do not represent JMSNews.com's opinions or views. As it's written under my handle I'm "just a fan".

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by sense8ional View Post
                            Personally while in real life I never heard anyone mentioning Babylon 5, online I've always been reading largely good things about the show in the various communities I've been a part of with some calling it their favorite space scifi show.

                            That being said I'd definitely say it's kind of an obscure show today, but that's at least partly because it's not on most (any?) streaming Netflix-like sites and the DVDs are ancient as well. I know it's available for purchase on Amazon Instant Video for example but that's not quite the same as having it available on Netflix. A re-release of B5 is long overdue and they can absolutely do quite a bit better than the currently available DVDs (perfect.. no, better.. yes they can) without breaking the bank, contrary to popular belief.
                            IMO, no amount of "Street Cred" is going to get a Babylon 5 movie made. Even the best screenwriters and directors can put out a total box office stinker. Even people like Ridley Scott and Steven Spielberg have laid some eggs.

                            My point is that even if he has multiple shows doing well, it's no guarantee investors are going to give him 150M for a B5 movie.

                            I think his best bet is to come out with a knockout script that takes place in the B5 universe and could potentially become a multi-film property. Pitch it to WB, and convince them to put B5 back on TV and Netflix as part of the marketing strategy.

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by Ubik View Post
                              In the grand scheme of things B5 really isn't that popular or well acknowledged in most contemporary 'geek' circles.
                              Exactly.

                              I’ve only got my own experience to fall back on here but there’s a problem basing opinions on what the geek culture does. Active fan or pop/geek culture doesn’t necessarily represent viewership. Virtually everyone I know has a copy of the DVD box sets – from professional couples to little old ladies. Yet none of them ever take part in, or search out, the fandom. They just liked the story.

                              I’m part of that group – coming on the web to start what eventually became B5Scrolls – I can’t stress enough how the very concept of fan rivalries, for example, jumped out at me as alien, new and ridiculous – even though I’ve enjoyed sci-fi since being a kid. For long enough I thought it was a bad joke bouncing around folks who liked sci-fi. But it’s not only real, but an everyday part of the fan culture for many…… Fan cultures (all fan cultures) – do not reflect the opinions of the bulk of viewers. Because the bulk of viewers have little to no idea of the sometimes ridiculous stuff bouncing around this relatively small cliche of people.

                              Was B5 as popular as Star Trek – on first run viewing figures alone, nope not even close. But the little we know of DVD sales indicates it’s popular enough. Either way, there’s literally (at the very least) MILLIONS of people who watched and enjoyed the show, something which (even at it’s peak)the few thousand active online fans often seem to forget – because they’re outnumbered by the active Trek or Wars fans (two fandoms which had been well established long before B5 was even conceived).

                              The problem for a B5 movie is that big – silent majority of people, to give them a name – are casual fans (there’s another name for them). So getting them off their backsides and into the theatres is unlikely to happen. It’s a bit like the firefly movie (based on a show that got cancelled after 13 episodes). Didn’t do too well in the cinema but made money when it hit the DVD shelf.
                              Last edited by Triple F; 09-08-2016, 04:27 AM.

                              Comment


                              • All good points Triple F. I know there's a massive audience in, for instance, Russia that loved B5. Same goes for a lot of eastern Europe.

                                If I am brutally honest I've found most 'fandoms' to be a bit cringy and awful. I tend to avoid them. This forum is small enough, and well mannered enough that I don't really count it as 'fandom'. It's the B5 FB groups that tend to make my blood boil more often than not, and I frequently don't see eye to eye with that kind of larger fandom. Fan entitlement is rife, facts are often wrong or misreported and god forbid you are able to have a good laugh at certain aspects of the show you love! At heart I guess I still see myself as a casual B5 fan too.

                                It's a really hard thing to stick a pin in, but we know the DVD box sets sold well in their heyday. As has been said before, more streaming options would good to attract new viewers.

                                In the end I don't have the slightest idea if a B5 movie is financially feasible or not. It's about the only tangible B5 thing we have left to discuss or argue over! Hahahaha... fandom...
                                Last edited by Ubik; 09-08-2016, 06:00 AM.
                                Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

                                Kosh: Good!

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