A Conversation for TV Compilations (UK)
Dave E Lamp Started conversation Feb 13, 2002
I think cheap is the operative word. When I started working in TV in the 1960s the idea of making a pilot or dummy programme and then having it dissected by focus groups and consultants was almost unheard of. You wrote your script, booked a studio, transmitted or recorded your show and then sat back and waited for the reaction of the public. If it was good you made some more, if not you tried again. Can you imagine 'Monty Python' making it to air if it had been past a focus group - it would have ended up as 'Watch Parrot' or yet another vets programme. Nowadays the acres of research and procrastination prior to broadcast pushs up the costs and so we are left with the cheaper compilation option. I've worked on shows which have piloted for a whole week, just to produce something that will fill the wilderness of daytime television. There is just too much interference in the creative process and too much money wasted on trying to second guess what the viewing public want.
Hx2 Posted Feb 13, 2002
Yet there are still some truly awful programmes out there, which begs the question 'Why make a pilot in the first place?'
A few years ago, a pilot US remake of Red Dwarf was made (which included only Robert Llewellyn from the original). The pilot was rejected and the series was never made (even though everyone involved in the pilot recording were convinced it would become a series).
The network simply bought the UK original and have aired it rather successfully since then.
Basically, we can learn this: Either go ahead and make a creative, original programme or buy foreign programming.
The world put to rights once again by husey
As I understood it the US execs had a problem with Lister being such a slob, and with Rimmer being a complete smeg-head. And they wanted a woman in it. Which pretty much ruins all the comedy! The original cannot be improved on, so why try? It would be like remaking Blackadder.
And Introducing... A Leg Posted May 24, 2002
"Like remaking Blackadder" -- they tried to remake Fawlty Towers, of course. Someone important in it (quite possibly John Cleese himself) remembers the first American production meeting. A guy came out and actually said:
"We've decided to leave out the Basil character"
I can't imagine just how rubbish the result would have been.
Hoovooloo Posted May 24, 2002
Information regarding Red Dwarf pilot: it had Craig Bierko as Lister. Nothing against him as an actor, he was a creditable villain in The Long Kiss Goodnight. But look at the guy! Clean cut, square jaw, good looking, the hero type. Which is fine if you're making "Star Trek" or whatever. There were a couple of other interesting casting decisions, too. Jane "Daphne Moon out of Frasier" Leeves as Holly. That'd work. Hinton Battle (great name!) as the cat - this guy played the Scarecrow in the film version of "The Wiz", so you'd think he'd fit right in. But they did a reshoot of the pilot, and replaced him with Terry Farrell. SHE looked GREAT as a cat - but the series wasn't picked up and her career in science fiction television floundered, with the only other thing of note in her subsequent career being six years playing Jadzia Dax on Star Trek:Deep Space Nine .
I wish I'd seen the thing. Is there any way of getting hold of this stuff?
I thought that was bad, but I've heard that they are seriously considering remaking The Italian Job using American actors and the new VW Beetle, and not set in Turin because audiences don't know where that is. What next? Casablanca set in New York? Gone with the Wind with a cast of Mexicans?
Hoovooloo Posted May 25, 2002
Look, they remade Get Carter with Sylvester bloody Stallone. NOTHING can be any more pointless or stupid than that, surely?
It's a shame there isn't some sort of legal thing they could do to actually prevent certain movies getting remade. Top candidates for my list of "protected" movies, movies which someone might *think* of doing, but should be stopped from doing:
- Blade Runner
- One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
- The Godfather
- Forbidden Planet
- Planet of the Apes
Damn - too late with that last one. Too late for "Rollerball" too, unfortunately...
Any more ideas for films which should NEVER be remade?
Key: Complain about this post
- 1: Dave E Lamp (Feb 13, 2002)
- 2: Hx2 (Feb 13, 2002)
- 3: Just zis Guy, you know? † Cyclist [A690572] :: At the 51st centile of ursine intelligence (Feb 13, 2002)
- 4: Hx2 (Feb 13, 2002)
- 5: And Introducing... A Leg (May 24, 2002)
- 6: Hoovooloo (May 24, 2002)
- 7: Just zis Guy, you know? † Cyclist [A690572] :: At the 51st centile of ursine intelligence (May 25, 2002)
- 8: Hoovooloo (May 25, 2002)