The guys at The Popcast dropped the following Stargate-related video today.

So I thought I’d address it.

Now I want to preface this blog entry by making it clear that the topic of discussion is Stargate, and Stargate alone.  Although the new Lord of Rings series is referenced in the video, I am in no position to comment on it given that I haven’t watched the show.

Also, before we get started, I want to give a shout out to the Popcast channel that does a fantastic job of covering science fiction in general, but also produces Stargate-focused videos that are as entertaining as they are insightful.  Give them a follow and subscribe at The Popcast.

Alright.  A little background first –

Stargate aired its final television episode in May of 2011 with Stargate: Universe’s “Gauntlet”.  At the time of its production, we were operating under the likelihood that we would receive an order for a third and final season – but that ended up going away like the Stargate: Extinction Atlantis movie and that 11th season of SG-1 for Apple before it.  The franchise had produced three movies and 17 seasons of television (over 300+ episodes!) over its 14+ year run, making it one of MGM’s most valuable I.P.’s.  And, even though the consecutive production run had ended, we all knew it was only a matter of time before Stargate came back, in one form or other.  I assumed sooner than later.  That was over eleven years ago.  So let’s go with later.

One thing that  has become very clear in that time is the resilience and enduring spirit of the existing fanbase.  Over a decade since its last episode aired, Stargate continues to regularly trend on social media (as most recently as last week, in fact).  The fandom is still very much out there, still very much eagerly – somewhat wearily after all this time – awaiting the franchise’s return.  I can’t help but point out what a wonderful thing this is – to have an existing worldwide fanbase ready and willing to not only watch your new show, but support it online, ready to make tremendous noise in the lead-up to launch.

But – eleven years.  I suppose it’s not that surprising it’s taken this long.  And I’m sure the existing fandom had something to do with it given a creative misstep could risk alienating and losing them, turning passionate vocal supporters into equally passionate and vocal detractors.  But I’ve always held that problem is easily addressed by offering viewers the best of both worlds – for new fans who know nothing about Stargate, a fresh start series that is simple to jump aboard and watch without being privy to past shows; for the existing fanbase, an in-canon series that offers the prospect of Easter eggs and guest spots from familiar faces.  Guys, they’re the same show!  And who knows.  Maybe there’s even the option of going the new Star Trek route and offering multiple Stargate shows.  Something for everyone.

I was heartened, back in 2018, to hear that SG-1. Atlantis and Universe co-creator Brad Wright was in discussions with MGM about a franchise relaunch.  I wasn’t privy to the details of the development, but I do know that a deal was finally closed and Brad did write a pilot script.  The script was written for a specific potential home, went through a couple of drafts – and then, as so often happens in Hollywood, personnel changed and things went radio silent.  Understand that, in this business, radio silence is never a good sign.

Eventually, the MGM sale to Amazon was finalized and Brad’s script, I assumed, made its way there.  Months ago.  And still, radio silence.

All three shows are now available on Amazon Prime as of September, and that’s a very good sign.  An even better sign would be for Amazon to reach out to Brad and either move forward on his pilot or scrap it and ask him to come up with something else.  As I mentioned, the pilot I read was written for a specific potential home – but now, Amazon is the NEW potential home.  If they’re not feeling the existing script, I’m sure Brad would have no problem hearing them out and going back to the drawing board for a new take.  Which is what I hope will happen.  Eventually.

Of course, there is the possibility that Amazon decides to go another way.  Yes, Brad Wright was instrumental in turning the Stargate into MGM’s most successful television franchise and having him at the helm would ensure a series that would appeal to new viewers while delighting longtime fans.  Like I said, the best of both worlds.  But executives don’t always proceed along a logical path.  All too often, the flashiness of a hot commodity (the YouTuber with 10 million followers!  The writer who wrote that blockbuster!) is simply too hard to resist.  Other times, it’s a desire to ensure a show’s tone and themes are attuned to the prevailing zeitgeist, thereby crafting a series that merely echoes the ideas of every other show rather than standing apart.  It rarely ends well and I’m hoping Hollywood comes to that realization.  Again, hopefully sooner than later.   In the meantime…

I’m not privy to any of the internal decision-making,  but I am disappointed its taken this long for Brad to hear word.  Still, it could just be a matter of the studio’s go-slow approach.  Maybe logical heads will ultimately prevail.  Nothing is for certain.  Except for one thing of course.  Whatever form the new Stargate show takes, whoever is behind it, fandom will let their voices be heard LOUD and LONG.

11 thoughts on “September 9, 2022: The Stargate Update is that there is no update which, indirectly, may be an update.

  1. Given how Amazon preserved The Expanse and allowed it to finish up it’s run I would hope the signs are good that they would be smart enough to bring in Brad Wright. The other possibility is that they decide to go with a continuation of the original movie that was written by Roland Emmerich. There were rumours he had wanted to pursue a sequel when the TV shows wrapped up. Let’s hope they don’t go down that route. The original movie was fun escapism but doesn’t compare to what you guys helped build on TV.

  2. If there is one encouraging thing, it’s that once long-thought-dead initiatives can suddenly come back to life out of the blue.

    That said, I’ve decided to not really hope for a new SG or indeed even Dark Matter at this point. I guess I’ve come to the point where I’d rather be pleasantly surprised than continually disappointed.

  3. Well, I’m here, patiently waiting, but not holding my breath. When Stargate comes back, which I’m sure it will eventually, I’ll be watching. Love the series especially Stargate Atlantis. You got the formula. You know what works. I think you know how to please the fans. I’ll be here.

  4. merci pour les nouvelles. Hopefully something happens before the Sun expoldes in a super-nova…

  5. I haven’t seen the new Lord of the Rings either but Amazon threw a BILLION dollars at it. If the show doesn’t do well it could affect other projects. I couldn’t only find one article about that subject but it’s behind a paywall. If you have a subscription to Business Insider, I can send you the link or just do a search.

    As for LOTR, I’ll probably give it a go later on. I’ve heard the effects are good (for a billion, they should be) but that it’s a very slow burn on getting the story going.

    We did watch Samaritan. I liked it but did guess the major twist about 5 minutes into the show. It was still enjoyable, though. I’m not a Stallone fan but he did a great job.

    Have a great Saturday everyone! 👋🏼

  6. The long wait will lead to a mad rush I’m sure, when you talk about franchises Star Trek an Stargate have been going strong for decades, I hope all the talk will lead to more Stargate. I’m excited for how kick ass the special effects would be on a new Stargate series.

    I’m continuing to adore Reservation Dogs, it is so good, a true gem. And I’m enjoying awesome cherries from Canada; they were big enough to be handfruit and so fresh that they’ve lasted into a second week. Canada, you are very cool.

  7. Thank you for talking about the current state of stargate. I have seen everything except Stargate Universe although i have the dvd boxes. I guess I like the idea of unseen Stargate in my posession and knowing that there is nothing in production… I really want to see it though but not knowing that after this there is nothing left! How stupid is that, but I can’t help it. So come on and give a green light mgm to a new stargate show so that i can start watching Universe!

  8. I hope that Amazon will not distroy this exeptional project, “Stargate”! I don’t like and I don’t trust Amazon . Hope MGM will do the next series.

  9. I watched the original movie, “Stargate”, when it was released in 1995. I was aware of James Spader from his “Brat Pack” days, and Kurt Russell (of course), but I was living in Tel-Aviv and it was Israeli actress Milli Avital who caught my interest. I enjoyed the movie (have watched it any number of times since then), but the Stargate:SG-1 series never “clicked” with me. I might have watched two or three episodes, but it just wasn’t “there” (ditto for Stargate:Atlantis). But then, in 2010, I watched the first episode of Stargate:Universe, and it was “love at first-sight”. Boom! This one resonated with me. Like so many others (but not enough?), I followed it through 2010 and 2011, and was saddened when SyFy/MGM announced that it had been canceled and that there would be no Season 3. So, late last night (actually, early this morning) I finished a two-week “binge watch” of Stargate:Universe. Wow. Star Trek:TNG shone with its memorable characters, but Stargate:Universe featured more “nourishing” fare: an ongoing and well-written story line, with real characters well-cast, excellent-and-minimal use of CGI, and tailored (so it seems) to an adult viewership. Although I’m lukewarm/disinterested in reviving (nor “rebooting”) Stargate:SG-1, I would be pleased if Amazon were to “green-light” Season 3 (and onward!) of Stargate:Universe. The decade-long gap would (if the original cast were available-and-willing) answer the questions about “what happened to/with “X”? TJ’s ALS: cured, or? Marriages? Deaths? and so much more (what’s more? An opportunity to introduce new cast, such as children). It’s all there, if only…

    [To give credit where it’s due, I just this past summer bought an Amazon Fire Stick, enabling my “non-smart” TV to access the wealth of material available on Amazon Prime; Stargate:Universe was yet-another series in Amazon’s “quiver of arrows” — how about shooting this particular arrow? the target (audience) is ready-and-waiting.]

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