Sci-Fi Saturday: Saturns, Avatar, Star Wars, Iron Man, Starship Troopers 3, Watchmen, Lost…and TekWar!

This week in Sci-Fi news we have Saturn nominations, Jolene Blalock talking Starship Troopers 3, Cameron updating Avatar (and Saldana), Star Wars fans taking Lucas to ‘docucourt,’ news on the Akira movie, new photos from Watchmen, Iron Man and more plus some new trailers. Plus there are lots of Lost hints and spoilers and what everyone has been demanding…yes TekWar news!

Starship Troopers 3 might not suck?
The 2004 direct to video sequel to Paul Verhoeven’s 1997 actioner "Starship Troopers" was entirely forgettable. However, the third installment is looking up. For one thing it will have Casper Van Dien reprising his role as Rico plus the inclusion of Star Trek Enterprise’s Jolene Blalock (playing Captain Lola Beck). At a Wondercon panel this weekend writer/director Edward Neumeier (Robocop) stressed "Starship Troopers: Marauder" will be much truer to the original Heinlein vision [io9]. Blalock was also on hand and explained how she got the role:

The reason I’ve done a lot of science fiction is because my first big job was Star Trek, [so] a lot of the offers i get are science fiction. The universe shines down on me, in a psychobabble way. That’s what’s inside me, and so that’s what the universe offers me..

Van Dien & Blalock at WonderCon (WireImage: Ortega)

Saturn Awards Peppered With Trek
Trek is off the air and a film is still over a year away, but Trek folks past and present are all over the Saturn Awards nominations handed out this week. "Transformers" (written by Orci and Kurtzman) and "Cloverfield" (produced by Burk and Abrams) each received two nods including Best Sci-Fi Film. Abrams (and Lindelof’s) show "Lost" pulled in seven nominations including best Sci Fi Series, going up against "Pushing Daisies" (created by Voyager’s Bryan Fuller) and Heroes (starring Zach Quinto). Ron Moore’s "Battlestar Galactica" rounded up 3 nods including Best Syndicated/Cable Series and "Nemesis" scribe John Logan was nominated for Best Writing for "Sweeney Todd."
CLICK for the full list.


James Cameron update on "Avatar"
Director James Cameron sent an update on his mega sci-fi 3-D film "Avatar" (which co-stars Zoe Saldana) to [AICN]:

Things are going well on Avatar, or at least as well as can be expected on such a ridiculously complex project. We’ve wrapped principal, and most of the live action portion of the movie is already cut. It’s starting to look and sound like a movie. I’m ecstatic with the performances and the look. The cast chemistry worked out perfectly.

And what of Zoe?:

We still have a little performance capture work to do with Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana in March, when we get her back from Star Trek (she’s Uhura — but of course you already knew that.)

Fans take on George Lucas
A documentary which features interviews with various "Star Wars" fans who have issues with the series is in the works. The documentary is titled "The People vs. George Lucas" and is slated to hit sometime in 2009. The film will feature celebrity interviews and film makers are even seeking fans to submit their own footage. Find out more at

Why didn’t we think of doing this with Rick?

"X-Men Origins: Wolverine" Cast Fills Out
Over the past week, no less than five actors have been cast in this prequel spin-off from the "X-Men" franchise. Dominic Monaghan, of "Lost" fame, has been added to the cast and will play Barnell in the film, Ryan Reynolds has been cast as Deadpool, Black Eyed Peas frontman, will play John Wraith, Taylor Kitsch (who signed a three-picture deal) will play Gambit and Daniel Henney will play Agent Zero in the film.  "Star Trek’s" competition hits theaters May 1, 2009.

Jumper 2?
The sci-fi film "Jumper" teleported to the top box office spot last weekend and folks are already talking sequel. Director Doug Liman told Collider "I actually have a ton of ideas for the sequel." His star Samuel L. Jackson seems ready, telling SCI FI Wire "That [possibility of a franchise] is always an enticement."

Get these m-fing teleporters to a m-fing sequel

DiCaprio, Warner Bros. in for live-action ‘Akira’
Anime classic "Akira" is getting a live-action big screen treatment in what’ll likely become a two part series with the first installment looking likely for a summer 2009 release [THR]. AICN reports that that Joseph Gordon Levitt has been cast as Tetsuo and Leonardo DiCaprio (who is also a producer) will play the lead, Kaneda.

New Photos

Iron Man

Click to see this and 3 more images enlarged at ScreenRant

And check out "Lost" this week for a new trailer for "Iron Man." 


Click to see larger at SlashFilm

Lost Boys 2: The Tribe

Click to see larger at ShockTillYouDrop

New Trailers:

Journey to the Center of the Universe

10,000 BC



  • Roland Emmerich’s ("10,000 B.C.", "Independence Day") apocalyptic film "2012", based on the Mayan doomsday prediction that the world will end in the year 2012, has been picked up for release by Sony Pictures, Variety reports.
  • Jonathan Pryce ("Pirates of the Caribbean") has been cast in Stephen Sommer’s live-action "G.I. Joe" adaptation as the President of the United States, "a small, but integral part", notes Latino Review.
  • At the Toy Fair, Mattel unveiled the toy for Batman’s other ride; a decked out Lamborghini he drives when he’s Bruce Wayne. MTV Movies Blog
  • Timothy Harris ("Space Jam") has been tapped to write the screenplay for the upcoming CG-animated feature film "AstroBoy".  Directed by David Bowers ("Flushed Away"), the film is slated for a worldwide release in 2009. ComingSoon
  • New Line has added Shantel VanSanten, Bobby Campo and Hayley Webb to the cast of "Final Destination 4".  They join Nick Zano, Krista Allen and Andy Fiscella.  The 3-D film, budgeted at $43 million, begins principal photography this month in New Orleans. Variety
  • Hugo Weaving will play a detective in Joe Johnston’s upcoming remake The Wolfman. Variety
  • "Street Fighter" has its cast.  Kristin Kreuk (Chun-Li), Michael Clarke Duncan (Balrog), Chris Klein (Nash) and Rick Yune (Gen) have been tapped to star in the upcoming videogame adaptation from 20th Century Fox.


‘Lost’: Mind-Blowing Scoop From Its Producers
"Lost" producers Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse recently sat down for an interview with Entertainment Weekly about season four of "Lost".  Here are some highlights (SPOILERS).

  • Is Ben the sixth member of the "Oceanic Six"?:  ”Nothing precludes him from being a member of the Oceanic 6 — other than he wasn’t on the plane,” says Lindelof.  We’ll know for sure by the end of the seventh episode.
  • There is "no connective tissue" between Naomi’s Bracelet and the one seen in the Sayid episode "The Economist"
  • Lindelof on the chronological order of the episodes, and flashbacks/flashforwards: "When we’re presenting you with a narrative, it’s always happening in chronological order."
  • Cuse on the theory that the show exists in alternate timelines: "We want the audience to believe that is THE future. We don’t want people thinking, ”Well, since there are five iterations of this, I’m not going to invest in what’s happening to the characters.” "For example, the fifth episode of the season [airing this week] deals with time travel and operates in different time periods. It was a tough story to break. But we adhere to our rule: no paradox."
  • And what about that coffin scene from the third season finale?: We could be winky about the coffin all the way through season 5. But that was one of the first things we talked about when we got back to work on the new episodes: We definitely have to show who was in the coffin. That’s the primary superstructure of the season."

Preview of next week’s "The Constant" co-written by Lindelof

NBC to stream classic series
CBS isn’t the only corp. putting their classics online.  NBC Universal announced this week that they too are getting in on the act.  The sci-fi/genre show’s even include Shatner’s syndicated and CTV series "Tek War":

You know you want to watch it

NBC’s "Knight Rider" TV Movie Registers High Ratings
While the critics reaction was mostly "meh", ratings for the back-door pilot were strong.  The two-hour movie averaged 12.7 million viewers and strong ratings for the key 18-49 demo. Despite another recent revival from NBC tanking ("Bionic Woman"), these numbers are likely enough for a fall pickup. According to the Hollywood Reporter, in the even the series gets picked up, Star Trek’s new chief engineer Greg Ellis would likely return in his role as the main villain.

Sewell clocks in for ‘Hour’
CBS has picked British actor Rufus Sewell ("The Illusionist," "Dark City") to step into the shoes of none other than Patrick Stewart. Sewell will be playing the lead (Jacob Hood) in the CBS series "Eleventh Hour," a US adaptation of the Brit series starring Stewart [THR]

Can Sewell fill Stewart’s shoes?


  • Anchor Bay Entertainment has set a March 25th release date for the direct-to-DVD never before seen movie version of the short-lived SCI FI TV show "Tripping The Rift" (2004-05, 2007). Starpulse
  • "Moonlight" show runner and executive producer Chip Johannessen has abruptly exited the CBS series, marking the second such departure of a show runner for the freshman vampire drama. A replacement will be named if the show gets a 2nd season.  [THR]


Top 10 SF&F Broadcast Shows   HH Rating/Share
1) Lost   9.4/14
2) Lost (Recap Special)   8.0/12
3) Eli Stone   7.1/12
4) Lost ("Enhanced" Repeat) 5.4/9
5) Ghost Whisperer (R)   4.7/8
6) ‘Terminator’ (R)   3.8/6 (5.99M)
7) Moonlight (R)   3.8/6 (5.72M)
8) Smallville    2.4/4
9) Supernatural   1.8/3
10) Reaper (R)   1.0/2

1/28/2008 to 2/3/2008 – Source: Nielsen Media Research

Top 10 SF&F Syndicated Shows   Rating
1) Stargate SG-1   1.1  
2) Star Trek   0.9  
3) Dead Zone   0.7  
4) Stargate Atlantis   0.7  

1/28/2008 to 2/3/2008 – Source: Nielsen Galaxy Report via SCI FI Wire

Top 10 SCI FI CHANNEL Shows   Rating  
1) Ghost Hunters International   1.4  
2) ECW   1.3  
3) Scorcher 1.2  
4) Stargate Atlantis   1.1  
5) Disaster Zone: Volcano NY   1.0
6) Ghost Hunters    0.9
7) UFO Hunters   0.8
8) Meltdown: Day of Destruction   0.8
9) Inferno   0.8
10) Star Trek: Enterprise   0.8

1/28/2008 to 2/3/2008 – Source: Nielsen Galaxy Report via SCI FI Wire


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Watched lost for the first time–First!

I don’t understand why ST ratings are soo low….
Must be the post super bowl let down!

OK, now I understand… I spen the day at the Sci Fi Musem in Seattle… 58 degrees outside, sun… SUN, no snow…. my chance to see the Great Bird as a 2007 inductee, along with Geroge Lucas… and to see the original “Catpians Chair”…. along with all thoes props… This is the same building where the 40th Ann. of Star Trek convention in Seattle was held!

Let’s hope the US version of “The Eleventh Hour” has more consistent scripts than the Patrick Stewart version. There were only four episodes, two were good, two were so-so.

In addition to “Star Trek,” “Watchmen” is the upcoming movie I’m most eager to see. Both were important formative parts of my geek identity 20-30+ years ago — and they were both either written or rewritten by Orci and Kurtzman. If I were a screenwriter, working on those two properties (in the same year!) would mean I could die happy….

And it’s nice to finally see a finished image of Rorschach!

paul verhoven rocks! I will see the third starship left wanting so much more..and rico returns! cant miss in my book:)

Trekmovie rocks. Nuff said. Thank you for all you do.

Nice! I can’t wait for the Watchmen movie!

Congratulations to O&K for the “Transformers” nom! That was a fun, fun movie!

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

I actually just got back from seeing Jumper. They’d better do a sequel because otherwise the end just isn’t very satisfying.

Awesome insights! Keep em coming!

LOLA BECK : Blalock plus an E

Starship troopers 3, did they skip 2? New math and the public education system…

After Enterprise, there were in fact a series of articles in various places entitled, variously, “The Trial of Berman and Braga”. One of those–and I wish I had a URL–was a tremendous defense of Mr. Berman that I–until then a dyed-in-the-wool Bermaga basher–found quite convincing.

Why don’t the three (or four) major networks schedule multiple repeats of shows throughout the week like cable networks do? And for that matter, Sci-Fi Channel never ran the season finale of Flash Gordon beyond the premiere night.

#14 nope they did a Starship Troopers 2 and it was most forgettable. Personally i dislike Paul Verhoeven’s movie adaptation of Heinlein’s book and Heinlein fans that Ive talked to over the years seem to share that sentiment. Ironically the animated series Roughnecks is pretty good. AS for Troopers 3 I may see it out if curiosity but I don’t hold out much hope for it.

I interviewed an astronomer last week for the lunar eclipse, and asked about the celestial show in 2012. Uh, there ain’t one. There’s no line-up of planets. The Mayans probably just wrote out a calendar that lasted centuries and thought they’d done a great job. Hell, it outlasted all of them. But, 2012 being the end? I wouldn’t bet on it. (And if I’m wrong, who’ll be here to say “Ha Ha!” ?)

As for Starship Troopers 3… uh…????? Casper Van Dien — has he been working a lot since 1997, because I’ve successfully missed all his movies. I think Blalock is picking up crappy roles because she’s a crappy actress. Sorry, but her performance is one of the things that worked against Enterprise greatly. I wish only good things for the other cast members, but Blalock seemed bored with the role almost from the beginning.

The Lucas trial looks amusing. I’m sure George is crying all over his pile of case.


Starship Troopers?

Paul Verhoeven should have been horsewhipped for what he did to Heinlein’s work. The entire series is forgettable.

Blalock looks great in a t-shirt, though.

#20 I think Blalock is the only good reason to see starship troopers 3. A good friend of mine told me that there was a Starship Troopers anime series done in the early 1980’s Ive never seen it but my friend tells me it was quite good . It sfunny ,but after he did Starship Troopers Verhoeven pretty much disappeared from Hollywood.

Lots of great news. The People Vs George Lucas seems like the perfect opportunity for all those who hated the prequels to vent their spleen.

Oh, and just to correct you, Anthony, on one little thing – the original Eleventh Hour was made by ITV not the BBC.

– Great news … Starship Troopers was a very ..weird kind of movie.. a commando sci-fi movie …hm…it’s nice to hear again about Tek War…

Why is it that Jericho doesnt show up on any of these ratings……I consider it inna way SCI-fi,as does the sci-fi channel now I would say.

blalock umm yummy

The Lost Boys is one of my favorite movies. What can I say? I’m a child of the 80’s.

Hope the sequel is worthy….

Although a fan of both Shatner and Greg Evigan, I was never a fan of Tek War. However, I have been thrilled with the offerings from CBS, NBC, ABC, and Warner in free streams of classic shows. I use AOL’s In2TV site to watch a lot of them.

I’ve been posting wherever I can that Supernatural has been the better show episode vs. episode against Lost at 9 on Thursdays. Just my opinion.

Lost Boys sequel without the Corey’s, Kiefer, or Jason Patric? No thanks.

Per Transformers, I supposed Kurtzman and Orci will not be as busy with it as originally planned. Rotten Tomatoes says Michael Bay wrote the script himself! Man, could he ruin this franchise for us any more?

Rufus Sewell was great in Dark City. And having Richard O’Brien in it made it just twisted enough to earn a spot in my DVD library.

#27 the Tech war movies made for the action pack were pretty good, the series was as good as the Movies. I Like Shatner’s character Bascom, he was charming and ruthless at the same time. Greg Evigan was qite good to ,I don’t think B J and Bear helped his acting career much.

This “People Vs. George Lucas” film is the last straw…I’m tired of all these “George Lucas raped my childhood!” idiots. Let me say once and for all; people, he didn’t make these movies for you, he made them for him. If you think you can make a better movie, I’d like to see you try. Amen.

Will he sue us if we name it ‘Star Wars’?

24. brady

“Jericho” premiered February 12th on CBS and February 11th on SCI FI. The series will show up on these charts in two weeks.

If you every have any questions pertaining to ratings, just let me know in the comments and I’ll provide you with the numbers (in extended detail even if you’re interested).

Here are Jericho’s thus far (on CBS):

Feb 12 – 4.2/7 HH rating/share
Feb 19 – 3.8/6 HH rating/share


So much great Sci-fi info here- it doesn’t get much better than this.

Do we really need yet ANOTHER version of Journey to the Center of the Earth??? I think I’ve seen every version made…Im not that keen on seeing it in theatres….it looks good tho…and what cell phone carrier does that kid have to get coverage that reaches the center of the earth?!

I’s a James Cameron film.. and Brendan Fraser’s a good actor and all….meh I’ll probably go see it…even tho 3D glasses don’t work with my eyes. :/

If there ever was proof that Hollywood was running out of ideas it’s that they’re making a sequel to The Lost Boys 20 years after the original.

People Vs George Lucas looks to be a fun watch when it’s done. The New Star Wars Sucks argument is a pretty contentious one.

I always thought the Tekwar novels were somewhat poorly written.

Journey to the center of the earth with James Mason and Pat Boone is an undisputed classic, yeah most of the special effects including the Iguanas dressed up as Dimetradons haven’t aged very well, but all things considered it was a entertaining. This new new version, Im not so sure of , in the previews, that i saw the, CGI dinos looked almost like something out of the Spy kids movies. It was also made with the idea of being a 3 d movie and filmed in that manor. Maybe the finished product will look better then the previews suggest. In any event ill see it because I like Brendon Fraisers movies.

“Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles” is THE BEST TELEVISION SHOW on the airwaves right now. It is also the first television show not to be a complete and total waste of airwave “space” since, oh…2002??


“Complete and total waste…” I dunno. I still really miss Journeyman. It was developing quite an interesting mythology.


Okay, I’ll give you Journeyman. It wasn’t half bad. I didn’t catch too many episodes, but the premise seemed interesting and the little that I did see was pretty intruiging.

They made a Starship Troopers 2………?

# 40 yeah Irish Trekki it was a really memorable movie that no seems to remember, it was direct to dvd and it was just plain godawful in acting and writing everything. I marvel at the fact that they did a part 3, but the sequel which was budgeted at a mere 5 million would not have to sell to large a volume to recoup its costs and make money.The guy that wrote the screen play for the first installment is the same guy who wrote troopers 2 and troopers 3 , Ed Neumeir of Robocop fame. Ed also directed the third installment of Starship Troopers

I see, probably explains why I never heard of it. My question was more a ‘WHY?’ lol


I think “Why?” is probably the better question!

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|


#44 sorry about that Irish Trekki and Vulcanista 43 sometimes i have a tendancy to misread what the question really is. As to Why? Well simple ,the first movie made some money probably enough so that they decided to slap together a sequel on the cheap. When a movie is direct to dvd studios tend not care about quality, as long as it makes some profit. So the why would be, to make more money. With regard to Starship troopers I alway thought that I would have liked to have seen this made into a live action scif series because I think that would be the only y way to revive it into a viable franchise of any kind and undo the damage that Paul Verhoeven I cannot forgive Paul Verhoeven for what he did to this wonderful scifi classic, He turned it into a joke and a bad one at that.

Understandable, have done it myself on more than one occasion (Denise De Arman I’m sorry). I’m really trying to rack my brains and think of a good Paul Verhoven movie……. Nope! I know they made it into an animated series, looked good. Who knows if the third is a success, they might go the Blade rout and make a mini-series!

The part about the Wolverine film is this confirmed? It seems to good to be true, Deadpool my fav comicbook character on the big screen? I’d really like to know if this is true or not.