The STARGATE reboot is failing to lock its last chevron

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When it comes to the great Star * sci-fi franchises the talk usually revolves around Star Diplomacy, Star Holodeck and Starsky & Hutch, while overlooking Stargate – the humble movie released in 1994 that went on to spawn a television empire of its own with the long-running Stargate SG-1, the medium-running Stargate: Atlantis and the (far too) short-lived SGU Stargate Universe.

Fans of the franchise were cautiously optimistic when way back in the mists of time, or May of 2014 if you prefer , MGM Pictures and Warner Bros. officially announced that the co-creators and writers of the original movie, Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin, would be rebooting the franchise with a new trilogy. And completely rebooting the franchise was something Devlin insisted was necessary, saying:

Of all the projects I’ve ever done, Stargate is the only one from the beginning intended to be a trilogy. We always wanted to do parts two and three, but the thinking was they didn’t want to do anything other than the TV series. So literally for 20 years I’ve been chasing this project.

Twenty years later, we can’t really do part two. We have to start over from the beginning. So let’s reboot the series, put in all the things we couldn’t the first time, and set it up properly.

That’s not something we can complain about now – a 20 year in the making sequel didn’t work out so well for the Independence Day movies – coincidentally both directed by Stargate‘s Roland Emmerich.

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And now here comes the bad news: It looks like development of the reboot has stalled. In a recent interview with Empire, Devlin spoke briefly about the status of the project and had this to say:

It looked good for a couple of months, but now it’s not looking so good. There are just a lot of things that have to fire at the same time, and there was a moment where I thought it was all firing at the same time, and then it all kind of fell apart.

Months? You were still talking about it just a few months ago. The original movie was produced independently by Emmerich and Devlin, but the reboot receiving studio backing is what caused problems for Devlin as he went on to say:

It’s one of the reasons I prefer to work independently. Listen, I think if we did Stargate right, the fans would like it and we could do something really good. But if we screw it up, they’ll reject it. As they should. But I kind of don’t want to do it if I think that we’ll screw it up, and that’s one of the things that’s holding us back.

You’d have several studios involved and a lot of voices and, you know, you may make something great, but you also may have something that doesn’t resemble what you wanted to do. That kind of ‘collaboration’ is a terrifying aspect of the whole thing.

Studio interference. It’s something we hear a lot about these days, and something we here at TheMovies were talking about between ourselves just last night during our annual global dominion strategy session in our secret bunker. We also made fun of Nick because we’re capable multi-taskers.

Many movies, and understandably because of the money involved, become paint-by-numbers affairs as the studios funding the projects try to ensure that everything that appeals to their market focus groups makes its way into their movies, assuming this will automatically lead to larger audiences. And I think we’ve seen a push-back from both creators and audiences to that lately, because sometimes that can be to the detriment of the movie.

So there we have it, the Stargate reboot is currently stalled – indeed.

What do you think?

Last Updated: November 18, 2016

Trevor Davies

I like pie, I think.

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