Back in the 1970s, Gerry and Sylvia Anderson created the syndicated sci-fi series Space:1999. Set some 25 years into the future, humans had established a research center on the moon and had been storing nuclear waste on the far side. After a massive explosion, the moon is ripped from Earth’s orbit and sent hurtling through space. The 311 men and women that are trapped on Moonbase Alpha encounter strange aliens out in space as they search for a new planet to colonize and call home.
Space: 1999 ran for two seasons and stars Martin Landau and Barbara Bain, a then-married couple who’d worked together on from Mission: Impossible. Barry Morse co-starred on the first season and season two saw the addition of Catherine Schell and Tony Anholt. Other castmembers include Nick Tate, Zienia Merton, and Anton Phillips.
The series never had a true series finale but a mini-finale was filmed in 1999 on a replica set and features Merton delivering a final message from Moonbase Alpha. There was talk around that time of reviving Space: 1999 as a series of movies (ala the Star Trek film franchise) but the project didn’t get off the ground.
For several years, fans of the original series have been working on an unauthorized project called Space: 2099 that would be set 30-40 years after the original.
Now, ITV Studios America and HDFILMS have announced that they are producing an official reimagining of Space: 1999. It’s also called Space: 2099 but is unrelated to the fan project. Jace Hall is the president of HDFILMS and is executive producing the new series. He was also an executive producer on ABC’s now-cancelled V reboot.
No specific storyline details have been released about the new series. In an FAQ, Hall notes, “Space: 2099 is a ‘re-imagining’ of the franchise. What this means is that while there will be some familiar elements from Space: 1999, Space: 2099 represents a new vision and encapsulation of the intentions and key axioms that made Space: 1999 so unique and wonderful. Our intention is not to alter, replace, or negate the original Space:1999 series is any way – but to simply bring something thoughtful and new to audiences that align with the overall fundamental story-telling intention of the Space: 1999 franchise in general.”
Here’s the press release:
ITV Studios America and HDFILMS announced an agreement today for the development of “SPACE: 2099” – a complete reimagining of Gerry and Sylvia Anderson’s award winning and popular franchise “SPACE: 1999” which originally aired in the mid 1970’s, it was announced today by Paul Buccieri, Managing Director of ITV Studios International and President and CEO of ITV Studios America and Jace Hall, President and Founder of HDFILMS Inc.
Hall, also Executive Producer, is at the helm of the creative effort and is working closely with ITV Studios America to realize the full potential of the story and franchise. HDFILMS Inc. focuses on creating premium online content as well as film, television, and videogames. As the development visionary and Executive Producer of the recently re-imagined “V” television series on ABC, Hall has been the driving force behind numerous creative projects across many media platforms.
According to Hall, “This is a rare and exciting creative opportunity for anyone involved in storytelling and one that I am honored to receive. Science fiction is a powerful format capable of visualizing the human condition in thought-provoking ways. While we are indeed re-imagining the franchise and bringing something new and relevant to today’s audiences, I feel strongly that some of the overall tones set by the original “SPACE: 1999” television show represent an exciting platform to explore possibilities.”
Buccieri said: “After more than 35 years, we are thrilled to be developing a new vision of our much beloved franchise for audiences worldwide. Historically, the “SPACE: 1999” brand has entertained and fascinated millions of people. We are enthusiastic about the vision that Jace Hall and his team at HDFILMS have created and we’re very excited to be working together.”
ABOUT ITV STUDIOS AMERICA
ITV Studios America, the US based production entity of ITV Studios in the UK, is one of the largest international producers for the US market and a major force in acquiring, developing and producing reality and scripted programming for US networks. ITV Studios America has a slate of formats in production with major networks and syndicators, including Hell’s Kitchen, Kitchen Nightmares, First 48, After the First 48, Steven Seagal-Lawman, Four Weddings, Fat Chef, My Ride Rules, On The Fly, The Bill Cunningham Show, America Now and The Jeremy Kyle Show.
ABOUT HDFILMS INC.
HDFILMS INC. is a production company primarily focused on creating premium online content as well as film, television, and videogames. As the development visionary and Executive Producer of the recently re-imagined “V” television series on ABC, Jace Hall has been the driving force behind numerous creative projects across many media types.
What do you think? Are you looking forward to seeing a new imagining of Space: 1999?
Image courtesy ITV and HDFILMS.