Some general round-up things....
1) As folks sorta kinda know already, in addition to the B5 pilot movie, I'm
doing another project (a series) which goes into full-blown prep in just a few
weeks. Due to the air date being moved up a bit, and consequently the start of
filming and prep being moved up, I'm going to be unable to make it to San Diego
Comic Con this year. My apologies for those who were hoping to see some of the
footage from Rangers that I'd planned to bring. (And with regrets, I can't let
anyone else walk around with that stuff.) I've only missed it once before, due
to pneumonia, because it's my favorite convention and the ONLY big one I was
planning to do this year, but the way the shooting schedule is laying out, I
don't have any choice.
2) On the topic of the other, non-B5 project...which I *still* can't talk about
by name because the deal hasn't been announced yet (it's making everybody
nuts)...we're deep into casting, we've hired about 90% of our crew, and scripts
for the series are well underway. We will be rolling film on the opening movie
September 4th, finish that, then go right into filming the 18 episodes for a
total of 20 hours.
3) The producer's cut of Babylon 5: The Legend of the Rangers is now in hand,
and goes to the network and studio today. I think it's a really kickass movie,
and in terms of general production, performances, and stuff like that, it's
probably right there with In the Beginning (not in scale, of course, since ItB
is just *huge* and sews up the B5 storyline in this big tapestry, they're two
vastly different kinds of stories, but in terms of overall quality of
production and how well it works).
4) The latest draft of the Rising Stars screenplay, "Born in Fire," went to the
producers the other day, and I think we're now in pretty good shape. As it
turns out, there was an article in the Hollywood trades about a week or two
ago, in which MGM talked to vendors (licensees) about their upcoming films for
2002, and Rising Stars was among them...so thats kinda cool. If the first film
works out, they want to commission 2 more and make it into a trilogy that
reflects the 3 act structure of the RS comics.
5) My new graphic novel from Top Cow, "Delicate Creatures," will debut in
September at a bookstore near you. (I think it's coming out in hardcover.)
6) Jeanne Cavelos new installment of the Techno-Mage trilogy, "Summoning
Light," is scheduled to be out July 1st but is already in some stores.
7) Talks have resumed on the third TV project that I had alluded to earlier,
now that I've finished up enough stuff to clear the boards a bit, and I'll let
you know more about that if and when it becomes a reality.
8) Because of all the stuff going on in 1-7 above, there have been some delays
in the pub dates on RS and Midnight Nation. These are entirely my
responsibility because I can only write one word at a time, but I'll be
catching up shortly. Tow Cow has been very gracious in giving me the time I
need to get deal with the TV/film stuff.
-- and two annoying little nigglies to round it out to 10 --
9) Folks have emailed to ask if I'm still lurking on the scifi.com/babylon5
board because I haven't said anything there in a while...the answer is no,
because fan fiction began to show up, and where it is, I can't be. I do find
this kind of awkward, because it's the one thing I've ever asked from fans: if
you know I'm in X location, however infrequently, please keep fanfic away from
where I can see it, especially since I'm telling new stories now in the B5
universe and don't want to imperil myself legally by being exposed to fanfic.
There are plenty of sites where that stuff is available.
9a) A subset of 9 and a request...I keep seeing posts from people who are
freely exchanging textfiles containing the Crusade scripts that were posted on
bookface.com. To those folks, the rest of you can move on...I don't think
you've stopped to realize that what you're passing around so freely is my
property. It's not taking from WB, or TNT, it's taking from *me*. I own the
scripts that I write, under the Writers Guild Separation of Rights provision.
I allowed Bookface to put them up because they gave me assurances that they
could not easily or well be pirated. (They clearly did not anticipate the
ingenuity of some folks.) You are infringing on my rights, my copyright, my
ownership, and causing me to regret my decision to let folks see them, such
that I may never do this again because it greatly reduces my ability to ever
sell them or publish them in book form in future. You have, in effect, stolen
my property and are freely distributing same. That it's not available
elsewhere is not the issue; we all want things we can't have, or which are not
currently available. I'm asking you politely, as the guy who *made* this show
and *wrote* those scripts (and *owns* those scripts) for you to stop. If it
doesn't stop, I'm going to have to start taking action against those doing
this. (I've been giving my attorneys quite a workout lately, inclusive of
making sure that a certain individual who has been fabricating stuff about me
for six years on the unmoderated group...will do so no longer.)
10) Last bit of annoyance...in that past, I've recommended various websites to
folks as great places to shop or get free information...so it's only fair to
report back when it goes the other way. In all the time I've spent online, the
*worst* experience I've ever had has been with thinkgeek.com. They waited
weeks to send out stuff ordered for next-day shipment, screwed up the order and
sent the wrong stuff, spent weeks trying to get someone to talk to about it,
got the proverbial buck-passing, assurances made that were not kept, and the
result is that it's now three months and I'm still nowhere on the problems.
I've never seen a company this careless or inefficient or sloppy. If you're
looking for electronics to buy...go ANYwhere else. Trust me on this one.
Which is about the longest posting I've written in almost a year, because I
haven't had time to keep up on stuff...sorry for the frequent lapses, but as
noted above, things have been mad beyond description this year in terms of the
work involved, busier than at any other time in my life, so I've had to pull
back...on the theory that I can either write about the work or do the work, and
at this moment the latter has to take precedence.
Things will, one hopes, lighten up soon....
(all message content (c) 2001 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)