The J. Michael Straczynski Message Archive


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    From: J. Michael Straczynski <>
 Subject: Deep Space 9
      To: CIS  
    Date: 4/28/1999 12:24:00 PM  

Message 1 in thread 

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{original post had no questions}

I haven't seen 'em...only have heard that the last DS9 ep is
pretty much the same as what we did in SiL. Don't know that for a
fact, but the word on the street is that Sisko goes off with the
ancient ones, never to return, and the station gets blowed up.

    From: J. Michael Straczynski <>
 Subject: Deep Space 9
      To: CIS  
    Date: 5/2/1999 10:53:00 AM  

Message 2 in thread 

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David L Trahan <> asks:
> No offense, sir, but could you please put a spoiler warning next
> time you give spoilers for non-B5 shows like that?

"No offense, sir, but could you please put a spoiler warning next time
you give spoilers for non-B5 shows like that? I mean, I know this is a
B5 forum, but some people here, such as me, watch shows like DS9, and
do not want to know stuff like that about episodes yet to air."

Sorry, figured it couldn't be much of a spoiler since we'd
already done it on our show....

    From: J. Michael Straczynski <>
 Subject: Deep Space 9
      To: CIS  
    Date: 5/3/1999 1:42:00 PM  

Message 3 in thread 

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{original post had no questions}

"I seem to recall reading in one of the B5 magazines that when JMS was
first trying to sell the idea of B5, he was aware that DS9 was also in
the pipeline, so to say that DS9 is a knock-off is not strictly true
although some of the later story lines are similar."

Negative. We began trying to sell the B5 series to everyone in
town, including Paramount, 5 years prior to getting a Go order. The B5
series was announced in early November of that year. There was NO set
ST series by that point. Over the following Christmas weekend, I got a
phone call from someone very closely involved with Trek, who said,
"They just decided what the new Trek show is going to be. It's about a
space station that's a center of commerce, with a travel gate nearby."

So your information is quite incorrect. Nor did it come from
the B5 magazine (there's only one).

"Still JMS must be quite pleased if it is a knock-off, as to copy ones
ideas is the greatest form of praise."

Let me steal your car and see if you feel the same way

    From: J. Michael Straczynski <>
 Subject: Deep Space 9
      To: CIS  
    Date: 5/6/1999 6:37:00 AM  

Message 4 in thread 

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{original post had no questions}

"...infact I think it first aired about 6 weeks before the B5 pilot."

Yeah, they pushed through their post production specifically to
beat us into the marketplace.

"I can certainly understand you being "devastated" to find out about
DS9 and am surprised, given the penchant for court action in the USA,
that you have never started legal action for plagiarism."

It was discussed with WB for some time, but they felt that it
would be like getting into a protracted land war in Asia, and the
litigation might prevent B5 from getting a fair shot by being embroiled
in a conflict right out of the gate.

"As far as stealing your car is concerned, if your car was stolen you
would not have use of it. You still retained use of the B5 idea and the
fact that it is similar <g> to DS9 did not prevent it being produced."

Actually, it almost did. WB came within an inch of canceling
the whole thing because they weren't sure the market could sustain two
space station series. It also hurt us in that fans thought that *we*
were the copycats, since we aired second. And Paramount played a lot
of games with the stations to try and keep us off the air so they'd
have the field to themselves. It took us almost two years to really
recover from the damage, it's still an annoyance that we seem to be
providing DS9 with R&D free of charge, and we still have a lot of fans
who think we copied them since our pilot aired second.

    From: J. Michael Straczynski <>
 Subject: Deep Space 9
      To: CIS  
    Date: 5/19/1999 10:17:00 AM  

Message 5 in thread 

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Tim <> asks:
> So whats stopping you from starting litigation now ?
> Personally I would love to see the mountain having its peak
> lopped off <g> At the very least you could use the publicity to
> correct all those misinformed sci-fi fans out there ?

Because, again, I do not *own* B5, not now, not before, not once
WB bought it. The copyright belongs to WB, and they don't like to get
into these kinds of tussels.


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