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  • JMS to publish scripts

    Okay, generally I let the archives catch up but this one's fairly major. Most of you know how I love my script collection and a few of you have joined me in my addiction. Now pretty much anyone will be able to:

    Title: an update from jms
    Author: [email protected]
    Date: Tue, 13 Sep 2005 00:32:38 +0000 (UTC)
    Message-ID: <[email protected] com>

    [email protected] wrote:
    > JMS
    >
    > There hasn't been a full update in a little while of all things JMS. So
    > how about it. Pretty please.
    >
    > IP

    Okay, I've given it some more thought, and there are a couple of things
    that I can say...but again, I have to keep some of this close to my
    vest for a while in terms of details, at least in the first regard.

    I've just had a treatment purchased for series development by a major
    studio/network. (This is non-B5.) The cool thing is that this is for
    one of the major broadcast networks and, if it ends up going ahead,
    would be for a prime-time series. But I have to attach all the usual
    caveats: the process is this...you write the treatment, then you write
    the pilot, then if the network likes the pilot script, they produce the
    pilot, and then if they like the pilot they give you the series. It's
    a very, very long process and like 90% of all development deals in town
    it can stop at any given point.

    But I'm very pleased about it because it's a major studio, major
    broadcast network, and that's terrific. More than that I absolutely
    can't say because everything about the story being developed is totally
    confidential.

    Now, that said, there's a little something else....

    For years, I've been at conventions and had fans come up with
    photocopied scripts they'd purchased from script stores or dealers for
    $20 a pop, many times in poor condition...with loose or missing pages,
    hard to read, and thought, there has to be a better way for fans to get
    these scripts without paying that much for copies that are often
    inferior.

    So now, at some point in October, we're going to fix this.

    All 91 Babylon 5 scripts that I wrote are going to be made available
    through an independent publishing firm in trade paperback form. We're
    still working out the final details in terms of how to put the scripts
    together, but right now the plan is to do 7 scripts per book, each
    volume released every two weeks or so, at a cost of about $29 per
    volume if ordered in the first week or so it comes online) or $39 per
    for those who buy later. That's four bucks per script if purchased
    early, about five per script if published later...which saves fans a
    HUGE amount of money.

    There will be 14 volumes in all, each again containing 7 scripts AND
    newly written introductions and commentaries about each episode that
    are thus far averaging about 30 pages per book, telling some of the
    behind-the-scenes stories that have never been told before (and some
    that have), talking about the writing process, how the arc was created
    and maintained, anectodes about cast and crew, what went into the
    stories...enough so that at the end, at 30 pages over 14 volumes you
    get about 420 pages of new material on the making of B5...a book unto
    itself.

    On top of THAT...some of the books will contain rare b&w photos from my
    own personal archives, taken by me on set, which have never before been
    seen by anyone else.

    The very first book will have the Gathering script, plus 5 additional
    scripts (to make up the 7 hours of material) BUT...and this is the cool
    part...the script of the Gathering included in this volume will be one
    that has NEVER BEEN OFFICIALLY RELEASED BEFORE.

    See, when we went to sell Babylon 5, I wrote a pilot screenplay to take
    around. When we made the deal, the notes process began...and the
    script went through considerable changes. But this is the ORIGINAL
    draft, the one only seen by the studio and the other producers on the
    show.

    What's different? How about Garibaldi trying to get hold of his dying
    father back on Mars...how about a shape-shifter instead of a Minbari
    assassin with a changeling net...Londo as a part-time pick-pocket...Dr.
    Chakri Mendak instead of Dr. Kyle...new scenes between Lyta and Laurel,
    Delenn and others that were later cut...a LOT more character scenes
    with Sinclair and Garibaldi...a discovery about Delenn's lifestone and
    what that means to the Minbari...where Sinclair is NOT put on trial,
    but finds a whole different and more interesting way to solve the
    mystery of Kosh's assailant...and the introduction of Kosh's life-mate,
    Velana, who plays a very important role in the script. (Didn't know
    Vorlons had life-mates, did you?)

    This script is HUGELY different from the one we filmed -- funnier in
    places, with more character moments -- and it has been kept under lock
    and key all this time. Now, for the first time, it will be officially
    released in the first volume of this set.

    And here's the coolest part...as a gift for the fans...a FIFTEENTH
    volume will be given FREE to those who pick up the other 14. And what
    is IN this 15th volume, you ask?

    Remember the lost script for "Soul Hunter," of which only 5 copies
    existed before I pulled them back, destroyed all but one copy for my
    files, and wrote a brand new script to replace it...all because it felt
    too much like a Star Trek script? Well, THAT one is in the free
    fifteenth volume. It also features a comic sub-plot concerning B5
    being audited.

    As if THAT wasn't cool enough...nearly a YEAR before we began writing
    episode scripts, before we HAD the series commitment, WB wanted to see
    what a typical episode might look like. So I wrote a draft of "And the
    Sky, Full of Stars," one of our most important episodes, that is
    massively different from what we would later produce...including
    fantasy sequences with Knight Two as the proprieter of a dark carnival
    of sorts.

    It will also contain the Babylon 5 writers bible...the production draft
    of "The Gathering" as a companion to the original draft offered in
    volume one...and something very special.

    For over ten years, fans have asked "What would Babylon 5 have been
    like had Sinclair stayed?" Well, that question will be answered in
    this volume.

    After we finished the movie, but before we got the series going, WB
    asked to see a breakdown on this five-year arc thingie. So I wrote a
    six or seven page, single spaced outline of the ENTIRE FIVE YEARS with
    Sinclair still in place. The document makes for fascinating reading
    when compared with the series as it developed. NOT ONLY THAT, but the
    same document has a brief outline for A POTENTIAL BABYLON 5 SEQUEL
    SERIES, which would have been entitled BABYLON PRIME.

    Again, that's what will go out FREE OF CHARGE to those who pick up the
    full set. While obviously all these volumes can be purchased a la
    carte for those who don't want all the script, this fifteenth volume
    will ONLY be sent out free, it cannot be purchased directly.

    So for roughly a quarter of what fans would spend to buy the scripts
    individually from dealers, which are often poorly photocopied or
    otherwise in bad shape, you get uniform trade (large-ish) very handsome
    paperback editions, WITH the introductions, photos, and the bonus book.

    (Doing the math more specifically...to purchase all the scripts one at
    a time would cost nearly $2,000. Here, if copies are purchased as the
    script books first come online, the full set would cost around $420; if
    purchased after the discount period, we're talking about $560...which
    is, again, for 15 volumes counting the free one, amounting to nearly
    FIVE THOUSAND SIX HUNDRED PAGES OF MATERIAL.)

    I'll post another message when they officially go online at
    babylon5scripts.com but in the interim...know that they are coming.

    jms
    Woo-Hoo!

    I posted a question about the Crusade scripts and also inquired about how the network series might be scheduled around the Marvel Productions series.

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

  • #2
    Wow.

    This should be a very exciting thing to get.

    I'm not quite sure I understand how the buying of the fourteen volumes will get one a free fifteenth volume though. Is it that as we order each volume as it comes out through that website, they're going to keep track of those of us that buy all fourteen? Or is it that one who wants the magic fifteenth will have to buy a special set of the fourteen non-a-la-carte?

    I guess we'll get more information as it happens. But I know I want them all!! (Lord, I feel like I'm catching pokÚmon: "Gotta catch 'em all!") I'm wicked excited about the original "The Gathering" script and the what would B5 have been like had Sinclair stayed.

    Squee!

    Comment


    • #3
      I think there'll almost have to be a way to 'subscribe' to them so you'll automatically get them as they come out but I guss we'll find out once things are finalized and on the website.

      Yeah, I want the original "The Gathering" and the outline. At last, everyone's questions answered as to what the original plan was. And JMS's introductions to the episodes. Folks, if you read his anthology of the Twilight Zone episodes or his afterward to Midnight Nation, you already know what treat I expect them to be.

      This is gonna be *good*.

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

      Comment


      • #4
        Excuse me for a moment while I pick up my jaw.

        Holy cow! I'm eagerly awaiting this. I better finish up the books on my reading list (I have about 400 pages left in Musashi, and Battle Royale and Del Rey's complete Robert Howard's Conan collections to be read), and have to clear some space on my bookshelf. This will be a jewel in any private library, with a great spot near the B5 DVD's, the Del Rey B5 novels, and my small but growing shelf of JMS books.

        Aside from these 15 books, I just have to get a copy of the collected BBC radio scripts of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and I'll be set.
        RIP Coach Larry Finch
        Thank you Memphis Grizzlies for a great season.
        Play like your fake girlfriend died today - new Notre Dame motivational sign

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by WillieStealAndHow
          Aside from these 15 books, I just have to get a copy of the collected BBC radio scripts of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and I'll be set.
          You mean...like these?

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

          Comment


          • #6
            Thanks Jan. I just hope USDA calls me back for temp work during the cotton season. Once I get a source of income, I can afford to buy a few more books.
            RIP Coach Larry Finch
            Thank you Memphis Grizzlies for a great season.
            Play like your fake girlfriend died today - new Notre Dame motivational sign

            Comment


            • #7
              I'll keep my fingers crossed, Willie.

              Hoo-boy...Looks like Amy reminded JMS about the 'joke' script and he's going to drop it into the bonus book.

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

              Comment


              • #8
                I agree WoW. Other than JMS sounding like a used Car saleman this sounds like a real good deal and with lot of cool information. looks like the Lukers Guide might need some updating.

                I wonder what JMS with have to say about Gray 17 is missing
                Last edited by Night Marshal; 09-13-2005, 02:06 AM.
                "Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, Champagne in one hand - strawberries in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming WOW - What a RIDE!"

                Comment


                • #9
                  Oh, f*ck! And they're releasing those while I'm still unemployed!

                  Doesn't matter... I have to get it. Somehow I'll manage *going into B5-maniac mode* . I only hope that they'll offer international delivery, and that it won't cost too much for us poor souls overseas...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by cornholio1980
                    Doesn't matter... I have to get it. Somehow I'll manage *going into B5-maniac mode* . I only hope that they'll offer international delivery, and that it won't cost too much for us poor souls overseas...
                    I'm sure we'll find out more once the website is up but I think JMS generally tries to make things fairly easy for the international fans. He was very generous in his shipping terms on the auction and also, as I recall, with the Fan Club.

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

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Pricing of the Script Books

                      Jan,

                      Can you ask if there is at least a ball park price for this if not an official set price?

                      Thanks
                      ---
                      Co-host of The Second Time Around podcast
                      www.benedictfamily.org/podcast

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Holy moly! After the convention a couple of weeks ago, my husband said I was becoming a geek. I laughed and said I was a "closet geek" and all would soon be back to normal. I think the time is right to come out!

                        Money is tight in the winter months for me so I hope there'll be something left when I can afford things again.
                        Flying around the room under my own power.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Just one quick Q, I went to babylon5scripts.com and got a hosting website as the URL being parked by big daddy.

                          1) has somone stolen the URL

                          2) am I thick and have mistyped

                          or 3) is the site not up yet?

                          Phaze
                          "There are no good wars. War is always the worst possible way to resolve differences. It degenerates and corrupts both sides to ever more sordid levels of existence, in their need to gain an advantage over the enemy. Those actively involved in combat are almost always damaged goods for the rest of their lives. If their bodies don't bear scars, their minds do, ofttimes both. Many have said it before, but it can't be said to enough, war is hell. "

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I think this was just a head-up from JMS - it's not official yet.
                            Flying around the room under my own power.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by thebaron
                              Jan,

                              Can you ask if there is at least a ball park price for this if not an official set price?

                              Thanks
                              All I know is what's in JMS's post:

                              We're
                              still working out the final details in terms of how to put the scripts
                              together, but right now the plan is to do 7 scripts per book, each
                              volume released every two weeks or so, at a cost of about $29 per
                              volume if ordered in the first week or so it comes online) or $39 per
                              for those who buy later. That's four bucks per script if purchased
                              early, about five per script if published later...which saves fans a
                              HUGE amount of money.
                              And

                              (Doing the math more specifically...to purchase all the scripts one at
                              a time would cost nearly $2,000. Here, if copies are purchased as the
                              script books first come online, the full set would cost around $420; if
                              purchased after the discount period, we're talking about $560...which
                              is, again, for 15 volumes counting the free one, amounting to nearly
                              FIVE THOUSAND SIX HUNDRED PAGES OF MATERIAL.)
                              Let me tell you, this is a *very* good price especially considering that he's adding material most folks have never seen!

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

                              Comment

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