Slice of SciFi #57: Interview with Frank Spotnitz (“Night Stalker”, “X-Files”)

Frank Spotnitz News Bytes:

  • The remake of The Omen is set to be released on 06-06-06
  • Rights to Mara Leveritt’s novel “Devil’s Knot: The True Story of the West Memphis Three” have been acquired by Dimension Films
  • The Weinstein Co. has signed to develop a big screen version of Knight Rider
  • Anaheim CA is pulling out all the stops for the 64th Annual World Science Fiction Convention

Movie Talk:

  • World of Warcraft is slated to be turned into a feature film, along with “Grand Theft Auto” and “HALO”
  • Indie film The Other Side attracts big name talent
  • Singer Ashanti joins the cast of Resident Evil: Extinction
  • Original screenwriter for The Golden Compass returns to the project

Slice of Trivia

TV Talk:

  • a “Battlestar Galactica” update comes out of the Saturn Awards
  • The Cybermen show up in “Doctor Who” Season 2

Interview: Frank Spotnitz, producer of “Night Stalker”, “X-Files”, “Harsh Realm”, “Millenium” and more drops by to talk about the “Night Stalker” DVD release, and his upcoming projects

Essay: Mur Lafferty (Geek Fu Action Grip): Geeks and Nerds

Future Talk: What’s Coming Up?

  • Remake of The Hitcher slated for 2007 release
  • Stargate SG-1 being positioned for a big screen release to launch a third spinoff
  • The original unaltered Star Wars trilogy will be available on DVD between September 12-December 31, 2006

Listener comments: If you have any suggestions or comments, please let us know. We’ve got plenty of voicemail from fans to listen and respond to, but you’ll hear that in a fresh, separate show.

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  1. Andrea says

    I love the Sci Fi channel idea- A stargate night, Battlestar night etc… great idea. Make it happen people, pull whatever strings you can.

    Mur was reading my mind this week. I just had a conversation about how everyone is always trying to label each other. Why you always have to fit in everyones neat little box, and once your in your labeled box you better not dare stray. Its quite annoying.

  2. Walter says

    Gosh, seriously guys, I’m pretty sure you hate movies. Yeah, I loved The original Omen too, but I don’t see the problem with remaking a movie. I have never thought it was a bad idea. If you can’t stand the idea, then just don’t see it. But everytime one is mentioned on your show you all get bent out of shape and trash the idea. Deep breath. It might actually be a good movie.


  3. says

    No, I don’t hate movies. I love movies. That’s why doing remakes of movies that are only 10-30 years old bugs me… they could be trying harder to make better originals instead of half the films coming out being remakes or sequels.

    It’s as if they think they don’t have to try as hard to make a good movie because they have a certain percentage of the audience already dialed in because of the film’s remake or franchise association.

    As yet, I have not been impressed by any movie based off an old TV series since the first Mission: Impossible, and straight out remakes have so far fallen flat.

    I’m open to being surprised, but since remake mania hit about 5-8 years ago, it hasn’t happened yet. The only thing that’s happened is the remakes growing more and more prevalent. Because a recent remake hasn’t hit the mark, that’s why we’re skeptical.

    My biggest fear is that one year, every film on the release slate will be a remake all from the same year sometime in the 80s. My next biggest disappointment is that horror remakes always cop out. They really can’t touch the depth of the originals because they’re going for more shock and more blood rather than real psychological tension and fright.

  4. Greg from Tacoma says

    I have to admit I did enjoy the remake of Amityville, but in general, I agree that the remake thing usually produces rubbish.

    Slightly off-topic, but the release of Exorcist onto DVD was amazing. I have the one with the ‘extras’ (ie. the spider-walk down the staircase).

    Essentially they took that grainy old film we watched on VHS, and produced a DVD that competes with anything being released today – it was like watching it for the first time. It’s stunning.

    I would be nice if the studios treated the ‘original material’ with the reverence the Exorcist guys did, and released that, instead of many of these remakes.

  5. says

    Just a little car-correction for Michael, the Trans-Am was just the top level performance trim of the Pontiac Firebird, which (along with its F-body stablemate the Chevy Camaro) was discontinued a few years ago. So no Firebird, Trans-Am or otherwise, is being produced right now. The car that he’s thinking of, is the Pontiac GTO, which replaced the Firebird. The GTO is simply a rebadged car from GM’s Australian division Holden. This is the last year of the GTO, so Pontiac’s only real sports car for next year is the Solstice roadster, until a NEW Firebird debuts in 2009 following the introduction of the new Camaro in ’08.

    What? I can be a car geek and a sci-fi geek!

  6. says

    Quick question on the DVD release of “Night Stalker”: are the episodes going to be shown in the order released or in the order they should have been released? I caught it in the interview that some were shown out of order, and it’s always better when they are watched in order (i.e. “American Gothic”)

    I’ve made comments before about “Night Stalker”, mostly bad, but I really did like the show. That being said, I’m very fond of the originals, and I wasn’t overly happy with the “re-imagining”. If this show had been given a different name and with someone other than “Carl Kolchak”, I wouldn’t have had any reason to complain. Hell, even if they’d gone on the premise that it was Carl’s son, I probably wouldn’t have had an issue. I’m usually not this way with re-imaginings (hell, I was the one that actually liked “Starship Troopers”), but for some reason this one struck a nerve.

    Didn’t stop me from watching it, though.

  7. Sarah from Charleston says

    Eek! Summer! I am a volunteer with the Horror Channel! I would LOVE to be involved in a Horror Podcast!! I sent an email to Uncle Creepy from The Horror Channel and as soon as i get a response, i will let you know!

  8. says

    Hmm, that’s strange. I’ve just been checking the feed itself and on Itunes. In both cases show #057 showed up for me. Anybody else having a problem?

  9. TallGirl says

    Not gonna see the remake of The Omen. I’ll just rent the ORIGINAL one with the actual grown up actors in it.
    I mean, there’s a 25 year old playing Damien’s mother.

  10. Tom McNeely says

    I just read the news about Surface being cancelled. I think the Sci Fi channel should pick up this show and Threshold and revamp their Saturday Night line up and get rid of those cheesey movies. And if Invasion ever gets cancelled it should go on Sci Fi channel too. Who ever can pull strings with the SciFi channel please see what you can do.

  11. TallGirl says

    “I think the Sci Fi channel should pick up this show and Threshold and revamp their Saturday Night line up and get rid of those cheesey movies.”

    Unfortunately, those cheesey movies are–as you can see–kind of relatively cheap. Sometimes cheap cheesey movies are kind of fun, i.e. “Mammoth”. Most of the times they’re real eye-roll festivals.
    I guess they have to have something on that doesn’t cost as much as Battlestar and the Stargates.
    Me? I wish on Saturdays they’d run Star Trek. Any Star Trek would do for me.
    By the way “Threshold” was a CBS/Viacom product. I don’t know how feasible it would be for Sci-Fi/Universal/NBC to snag it.

  12. says

    Laugh out loud moment… Summer: “I’m gonna get that time out of whose a$$?”

    The lady in the cube next to me at work peeked over at me with an inquisitive look when I laughed at that one.

    Thanks for Summer and all she brings to the show.


  1. […] Back in May, on Slice of SciFi Show #057 we talked about the possiblity of a new Stargate Movie. Now the original movie’s co-writer and producer Dean Devlin (The Triangle & Independance Day) told SciFi Wire that he has struck a production deal with MGM and will be developing a two picture sequel to the original film with the hopes of getting both Kurt Russell and James Spader to go back through the Stargate to reprise their roles as Jack O’Neil and Daniel Jackson. Devlin says that Russell and Spader have expressed interest in revisiting the project. […]

  2. […] Several months ago, when Frank was a guest on our show he very briefly mentioned the show, but now that SPIKE has signed on we can tell you more about it. The two leads, Tergesen and Curran are detectives at odds with one another’s investigative techniques but, due to the overwhelming circumstances are forced to work together as they watch their city and fellow officers succumb to whatever is causing the seemingly random mutations….or, are they random? They must face each day wondering if they or their loved ones, friends and co-workers will be next. […]