This week in The Watch you can find out why Simon Pegg is pissed, why Shatner (with some help from Jason Alexander) is going country, why Koenig is in court, why Billingsley is taking on Superman, why Scott Bakula is dancing and where you can see Patrick Stewart, Brent Spiner and a bunch of other Trek stars this weekend…plus much more.
Pegg Is Pissed
Variety has announced that the Fox Network has ordered a pilot for an American version of Spaced, the popular British series that was co-created by the new Scotty, Simon Pegg. But Pegg, who is not involved with the adaptation, is hardly jumping for joy. It appears that the powers behind the Spaced deal didn’t bother to discuss the matter with the show’s creators. In an official statement regarding an American-made Spaced, Pegg writes:
The fact is, when we signed our contracts ten years ago, we had neither the experience or the kudos to demand any clauses securing any control over future reversioning. We signed away our rights to any input in the show’s international future, because we just wanted to get the show made and these dark days of legal piracy seemed a far away concern. As a result, we have no rights. You would perhaps hope though, out of basic professional respect and courtesy, we might have been consulted. It is this flagrant snub and effective vote of no confidence in the very people that created the show, that has caused such affront at our end.
To read the full statement, head to The Stage.
Pegg’s about to whip somebody’s a$$.
Altman and Wolfe dish on Zicree Podcast
Star Trek: New Voyages director (and TNG & DS9 story writer) Marc Scott Zicree started up his own podcast this year (along with Dresden Files and Blade showrunner and Angel producer Dave Simkins), focusing on in-depth interviews with fellow writers. In the first podcast in January Zicree talked about directing New Voyages as well has his own visit to the set of JJ Abrams Star Trek (Abrams is a Twilight Zone nut and Zicree wrote "Twilight Zone Companion" so they have bonded). Last month Zicree interviewed Farscape creator Rockne O’Bannon and DS9 writer Robert Hewitt Wolfe who talked extensively on his time with Trek. This week the podcast featured Mark A. Altman, co-writer and producer of the Star Trek tribute, Free Enterprise, and numerous other films. Along with his collaborator Steve Kriozere, who discusses his time on NCIS, the Sci-Fi Channel film Dead & Deader with Armin Shimerman and John Billingsley and more, Altman talks about covering Star Trek for Cinefantastique early in his career and, of course, working with William Shatner and the latest on Free Enterprise 2. You can download the Zicree-Simkins podcast at ITunes or go directly to zicreesimkins.wordpress.com.
Bill is a little bit country and a little bit hammy
William Shatner (the original Jim Kirk) and the man who hosted the Shat’s Comedy Central roast, Jason Alexander (Kurros in VOY’s “Think Tank”), have both been nominated as Supporting Character of the Year by the CMT (Country Music Television) Music Awards. They are each nominated for their appearances in Brad Paisley’s music video for the country song “Online.” Visitors can vote for their favorite at CMT.com; the first round of voting ended recently but you will get another chance when the polls reopen on later today. But that isn’t the only new ‘honor’ for the Shat, his performance in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan has ranked #15 in The Shiznit’s Top 20 Most Over-The-Top Performances Ever. Shatner beat out the likes of Terence Stamp (for Superman II), John Malkovich (for Con Air), but didn’t ham it up enough to defeat Gerard Butler in 300, or Jack Nicholson in The Shining.
Shatner and Alexander go country
This week Scott Bakula began a run appearing in a new production of “Dancing in the Dark” at the Old Globe Theater in San Diego. The show premiered Tuesday and runs through April. Tickets and info at oldglobe.org. Bakula was interviewed about the show on the local SD news (click image below to see video).
Billingsley v Superman
NBC is putting together a horror anthology series called Fear Itself and Star Trek: Enterprise‘s Dr. Phlox, John Billingsley, is among the actors who will be appearing on the show. The series, which is modeled after Showtime’s Masters of Horror, is being shot in Canada. Thirteen episodes have been ordered, with production currently underway on the second episode. According to MovieWeb, Billingsley will be starring alongside Superman himself Brandon Routh, in the third episode, entitled “Community.” The synopsis for the episode reads as follows:
“Community” is directed by Mary Harron and written by Kelly Kennemer. When a young married couple, played by Routh and Appleby, find the perfect house in the perfect neighborhood, their lives seem…well…perfect. But as the dark underbelly of their neighborhood creeps to the surface, they soon realize that their neighbors will go to any extreme — even murder — to make sure that they comply with their twisted sense of conformity. John Billingsley also stars.
Billingsley with his Zombie pals from the upcoming "Alive"…
is horror his new thing?
Trek Stars Will Be ’12 Minutes from Manhattan’
Creation Entertainment’s ’12 Minutes from Manhattan’ Star Trek convention begins TOMORROW at 1pm. The event will be held at The Crowne Plaza Meadowlands Hotel in Secaucus, New Jersey — literally 12 minutes from Manhattan (apparently). Attending the event will be a plethora of Trek stars: Patrick Stewart (Jean-Luc Picard), Brent Spiner (Data), Rene Auberjonois (Odo), Armin Shimerman (Quark), Dominic Keating (Malcolm Reed), Chase Masterson (Leeta), J.G. Hertzler (Martok), Max Grodenchik (Rom), Casey Biggs (Damar), and Robin Curtis (Saavik). For more information, head on over to Creation’s official site.
How’s that for a crew roster?
UPDATE: Stewart and Regis
Patrick Stewart is in New York performing “MacBeth” and so he dropped by the Regis and Kelly show today. No Trek, but he did talk about “MacBeth,” his Yorkshire accent and ballroom dancing. You can watch both parts below (thanks Rocker for cap)
Madea’s Scouting Locations
Tyler Perry, the popular filmmaker who has a cameo as the head of Starfleet Academy in the new Star Trek movie, was recently spotted in New Orleans. According to The Times-Picayune, Perry was scouting locations for his upcoming film The Family That Preys Together, currently set to open September 12th. In the meantime, ComingSoon.net has an exclusive clip from Perry’s next film, Meet the Browns, opening in two weeks; you can watch the clip here.
So that’s how Perry keeps getting people to watch his movies…
Boner Back in Court
Remember when TOS star Walter Koenig’s actor/filmmaker/activist son Andrew Koenig (Tumak, DS9’s “Sancuary”) was arrested for protesting at the Rose Parade on New Year’s Day? Well, Koenig (who played ‘Boner’ on Growing Pains) was ultimately charged with a misdemeanor, fined $100, and sent on his marry way… but it appears Koenig will be heading back to court for a related matter. Pasadena Weekly is reporting that Koenig’s attorney will be arguing in court that Koenig’s right to free speech were violated. According to TV Squad, a pre-trial hearing was held on March 3rd.
I don’t think they got the joke, Andrew.
Visitor’s Wildfire Racing Away
A bit of old news I missed earlier: Wildfire, the horse racing drama starring DS9’s Nana Visitor (Kira Nerys) and co-created by the late Trek producer/writer Michael Piller, will not be racing back for a fifth season. ABC Family has opted not to renew the show, which began its fourth season on January 21st. The show is scheduled to air its final episode on May 26th, but that hasn’t stopped fans from starting a campaign to save the show. If you’re interested in trying to save Wildfire, check this out. Regardless, Visitor won’t be looking for work immediately — she currently has a recurring role in the fourth season of Ronald D. Moore’s Battlestar Galactica, which premieres April 4th.
Sorry, Nana, but you can’t keep the hat.
- George Takei (Hikaru Sulu) has signed up to narrate the he Edmonton Symphony Orchestra’s Sci-Fi Spectacular concert in January 2009. (Edmonton Journal)
- Meet the redshirts: Star Trek: Enterprise stunt coordinator Vince Deadrick, Jr. and his father, original series and Enterprise stuntman Vince Deadrick, Sr., will be doing a guest signing at the Grand Slam in Burbank, California from April 11th-13th
- Former DS9 star Avery Brooks (Benjamin Sisko) hosted a four-day event for the unveiling of a new pharmaceutical drug at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco late last month. There were also a lot of lights. (Digital Content Producer).
- Kate Mulgrew (VOY’s Kathryn Janeway) was the keynote speaker at the MetLife Foundation Awards for Medical Research in Alzheimer’s Disease which were held last Friday, February 29th. (Totally Kate!)
- The 10th Annual Craic Fest in Manhattan began yesterday with a screening of the Irish film Kings, starring Colm Meaney (Miles O’Brien). (Irish Voice)
- Star Trek composer Michael Giacchino will speak at a workshop on “How to ‘Score’ Big in the Movies” at the LA County Musuem on March 20th. (LACMA)
- Tim Russ (Tuvok) is currently scheduled to appear at the I-CON 27 convention in Stony Brook University, New York, April 4-6. (The Official Tim Russ Web Page)
- Canadian actress Linda Thorson (Gul Ocett, TNG’s “The Chase”) will be guest-starring in an episode of the BBC One series Doctors airing March 18th. (The Press Association)
- Alan Dale (Praetor Hiren, Star Trek Nemesis) has taken over the role of King Arthur in the London production of Monty Python’s Spamalot. (Playbill)
Explain again how sheep’s bladders may be employed to prevent earthquakes.
- TV director Herb Kenwith (90), who directed the TOS episode “The Lights of Zetar,” died of prostate cancer on January 30th. (Variety)
- Fantasy author Janet Kagan (63), who wrote the TOS novel Uhura’s Song, died of acute COPD on February 29th. (SFF.net)
- Star Trek IV composer Leonard Rosenman (83) died on March 4th. See our coverage of his death here.