Author Topic: Remake of "Cosmos" to be made featuring Neil Tyson  (Read 7447 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Dr.PastaMaker

  • My Pasta is Greattt!
  • Seasoned Contributor
  • ****
  • Posts: 728
  • Ph.D Pastamaking, Class of Spaghetti Omega
Remake of "Cosmos" to be made featuring Neil Tyson
« on: August 05, 2011, 05:30:44 AM »
https://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/05/arts/television/fox-plans-new-cosmos-with-seth-macfarlane-as-a-producer.html?_r=1

Quote
August 5, 2011
‘Family Guy’ Creator Part of ‘Cosmos’ Update
By DAVE ITZKOFF

“Cosmos,” the 1980 documentary mini-series that encouraged a generation of viewers to contemplate the origins of the universe and their place in it, and made an unlikely television personality out of the astronomer Carl Sagan, is poised to return to terrestrial airwaves. Only this time the starship is being steered by a pilot whose identity you might not surmise even if you had billions and billions of guesses.

On Friday the Fox network is to announce that it has ordered a 13-episode series, “Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey,” expected to be broadcast in 2013. As part of a creative team that includes Ann Druyan, Sagan’s widow and a collaborator on the original “Cosmos,” one of the executive producers is Seth MacFarlane, the creator, producer, co-star and animating spirit of “Family Guy,” the bawdy and irreverent Fox cartoon sitcom.

Yet behind a comic sensibility that is sometimes provocative and sometimes puerile, Mr. MacFarlane is a committed fan of the first “Cosmos” who laments a modern society that he says has lost its fascination with science.

“We’re obsessed with angels and vampires and whatnot,” Mr. MacFarlane, 37, said in a telephone interview, “when there are many more exciting and very real and much more spectacular things to be excited about, that are right in our own planetary backyard.”

When the original “Cosmos” (subtitled “A Personal Voyage”) was first shown on PBS from September to December 1980, it was a watershed moment for science-themed television programming. Sagan’s look at existence at its most massive and microscopic, accompanied by a contemplative score by the Greek composer Vangelis, were eventually viewed by 400 million people in 60 countries, making it public television’s most-watched short-form series until the Ken Burns documentary “The Civil War.”

While its visions of intergalactic travel made an impression on a young Mr. MacFarlane (see the many “Star Trek” and “Star Wars” references on “Family Guy”), the intrepid spirit of “Cosmos” is now hard to reconcile with an era in which NASA has no clear successor to its recently ended space shuttle program.

“The older I got, I noticed a pattern in our culture of lethargy,” Mr. MacFarlane said. “We got to the Moon, and then we just stopped.”

In 2009 Mr. MacFarlane was introduced by Neil deGrasse Tyson, the astrophysicist, “Nova ScienceNow” host and director of the Hayden Planetarium, to Ms. Druyan, a “Cosmos” co-creator.

For several years Ms. Druyan said, she, Dr. Tyson and Steven Soter, another collaborator on the original series, pitched a new version of “Cosmos” to “the usual television network suspects” that did not quite see mass appeal in the series.

“We weren’t interested in going to the audience that already knew that it loved science,” Ms. Druyan said. “We wanted to go to the largest possible audience and attract people who’d never even thought about it.”

But with the support of Mr. MacFarlane the “Cosmos” team obtained meetings with Peter Rice, the chairman of Fox Broadcasting, and Kevin Reilly, the network’s entertainment president, who gave the series a green light last year. The new series will be produced with the National Geographic Channel, which will show episodes after they run on Fox.

Mr. MacFarlane and Ms. Druyan are now close friends and more compatible than their reputations might suggest. Ms. Druyan said Mr. MacFarlane was a hero in her household, where she and her children are regular “Family Guy” viewers.

Their personal politics also overlap from time to time: Ms. Druyan is on the advisory board of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, whose values are occasionally espoused on “Family Guy.” And Mr. MacFarlane once assigned one of his writers to read an essay about abortion by Sagan and Ms. Druyan before tackling a controversial “Family Guy” episode on that same topic.

Mr. MacFarlane seems to have an ever-increasing entertainment portfolio. He is also serving as an executive producer of the Fox animated programs “American Dad!” and “The Cleveland Show”; preparing a revival of “The Flintstones” for the network; releasing a pop album; and directing his first feature film, “Ted,” about a man with a living teddy bear. He said he understood that his love of lowbrow culture and low humor made him the odd man out on “Cosmos.”

“I’m perhaps the least essential person in this equation,” he said. “This is obviously a complete departure from anything that I’ve done professionally, but it’s very comfortable territory for me personally.” (Unlike Mr. MacFarlane’s cartoon shows, the new “Cosmos” will not feature non-sequitur pop-culture jokes, and will be hosted by Dr. Tyson.)

Ms. Druyan said that though Mr. MacFarlane never knew her husband, who died in 1996, “I’ve imagined Seth and Carl meeting, an infinite number of times, adding that as “two men with just protean talents,” they surely would have been kindred spirits.

“Now, I’ve heard stories about my husband before we were together, that he wasn’t always that nice,” Ms. Druyan said. “But the guy I knew was truly good. That’s just the vibe of being with Seth.”

Good things I see: Support from Ann and Steven Soter, Seth despite being a tool has a great interest in science, Neil Tyson sees Sagan as a mentor and greatly respected the man. Hopefully in HD

Possible bad: Shown on fox, produced by National Geographic. Should be back on PBS personally.

What can never be replaced: Sagan
Science is amazing. Science is so amazing that if you were to try and disprove Science, you would have to use Science to do it.

Offline Anders

  • Deleted
  • Poster of Extraordinary Magnitude
  • *
  • Posts: 13015
Re: Remake of "Cosmos" to be made featuring Neil Tyson
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2011, 05:54:23 AM »
It needs to be shown on Fox. m"I am come to heal the sick, not the healthy."
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge: it is those who know little, not those who know much, who so positively assert that this or that problem will never be solved by science.” Charles Darwin

Offline Kwisatz Haderach

  • Poster of Extraordinary Magnitude
  • **********
  • Posts: 11166
Re: Remake of "Cosmos" to be made featuring Neil Tyson
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2011, 06:06:08 AM »
It needs to be shown on Fox. "I have come to heal the sick, not the healthy."

Fixed.

It is a sad comment on our society that the NYT is describing it as "Cosmos with Seth MacFarlane" rather than "Cosmos with Neil Tyson".

Offline Scadilla

  • Keeps Priorities Straight
  • ***
  • Posts: 329
  • Consistently Inconsistent
    • Sketch Blawg
Re: Remake of "Cosmos" to be made featuring Neil Tyson
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2011, 06:15:01 AM »
It is sad that Neil is the lesser known of the two, but I'm glad Seth is on board. Hopefully that will legitimize the show(entertainment wise) for people who wouldn't be interested otherwise.

With all the probes going out plus the James Webb telescope it should make for some good TV.
"I don't believe in astrology; I'm a Sagittarius and we're skeptical." - Arthur C. Clarke

Offline JuniorSpaceman

  • Seasoned Contributor
  • ****
  • Posts: 642
Re: Remake of "Cosmos" to be made featuring Neil Tyson
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2011, 06:59:29 AM »
This is nothing but great news  :cheers:

Neil is the perfect person to host it, and the Family Guy connection is pretty much irrelevant [I think that his prominence in the article says more about the NYT than about the production]. I can't see a problem with it being on Fox or any other channel, as long as it's out there.

I've just been (re)watching the original series, and as brilliant as it is, it is very dated special effects wise, and there have been a ton of things discovered since then. Bring it on!

Offline moj

  • beer snob
  • Reef Tank Owner
  • *********
  • Posts: 8942
Re: Remake of "Cosmos" to be made featuring Neil Tyson
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2011, 07:30:00 AM »
cool deal, maybe Seth with come on Neil's show star talk to pimp it.  I know it's a radio show and not a podcast but because I listen to as a podcast it's become one of my fav's.  Neil is one of the best popularizer’s of science, I think in part because he's just so damn jovial.

Offline Zytheran

  • Frequent Poster
  • ******
  • Posts: 2829
    • The old Skeptics SA website
Re: Remake of "Cosmos" to be made featuring Neil Tyson
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2011, 07:44:02 AM »
All good news. They understand marketing.  :)

Quote
“We’re obsessed with angels and vampires and whatnot,” Mr. MacFarlane, 37, said in a telephone interview, “when there are many more exciting and very real and much more spectacular things to be excited about, that are right in our own planetary backyard.”

With someone as popular as Seth promoting this sort of thinking this has WIN written all over it.
Don't a lot of people who watch FOX need some educating? I'm pretty sure the PBS viewers are already in the pro-science camp.
The last thing we need to do is preach to the converted.

Quote
“We weren’t interested in going to the audience that already knew that it loved science,” Ms. Druyan said. “We wanted to go to the largest possible audience and attract people who’d never even thought about it.”

Offline Anders

  • Deleted
  • Poster of Extraordinary Magnitude
  • *
  • Posts: 13015
Re: Remake of "Cosmos" to be made featuring Neil Tyson
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2011, 08:03:56 AM »
cool deal, maybe Seth with come on Neil's show star talk to pimp it.  I know it's a radio show and not a podcast but because I listen to as a podcast it's become one of my fav's.  Neil is one of the best popularizer’s of science, I think in part because he's just so damn jovial.

Aaaaand bookmarked...
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge: it is those who know little, not those who know much, who so positively assert that this or that problem will never be solved by science.” Charles Darwin

Offline MikeHz

  • Too Much Spare Time
  • ********
  • Posts: 6845
Re: Remake of "Cosmos" to be made featuring Neil Tyson
« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2011, 08:33:05 AM »
Tyson is going to have to practice his "billions and billions."
"It's easier to fool people than to convince them they have been fooled." Mark Twain

Online Andrew Clunn

  • Poster of Extraordinary Magnitude
  • **********
  • Posts: 15624
  • Aspiring Super Villain
Re: Remake of "Cosmos" to be made featuring Neil Tyson
« Reply #9 on: August 05, 2011, 08:53:09 AM »
Quote
(Unlike Mr. MacFarlane’s cartoon shows, the new “Cosmos” will not feature non-sequitur pop-culture jokes, and will be hosted by Dr. Tyson.)

Good, that's all I needed to know.
To err is human.  To syntax error is System.NullReferenceException

Offline Halloran

  • Frequent Poster
  • ******
  • Posts: 3186
Re: Remake of "Cosmos" to be made featuring Neil Tyson
« Reply #10 on: August 05, 2011, 09:11:56 AM »

Offline DeanMorrison

  • Not Enough Spare Time
  • **
  • Posts: 142
    • Music by Dean Morrison

Offline jaypee

  • Poster of Extraordinary Magnitude
  • **********
  • Posts: 19173
  • Astronaut Mike Dexter
Re: Cosmos Sequel!
« Reply #12 on: August 05, 2011, 10:53:49 AM »
Oh great, it's going to be produced by Seth MacFarlane which means there will be segments which just relentlessly pummel you and run far too long.
"If I were an Algebra teacher I'd give everyone a letter grade but they'd have to figure out the value of the letter" -- A friend of mine

Offline DeanMorrison

  • Not Enough Spare Time
  • **
  • Posts: 142
    • Music by Dean Morrison
Re: Cosmos Sequel!
« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2011, 10:56:51 AM »
I know MacFarlane is a cosmos fan, but I haven't seen him do any of this kind of work before; I have high hopes, though!

Offline jaypee

  • Poster of Extraordinary Magnitude
  • **********
  • Posts: 19173
  • Astronaut Mike Dexter
Re: Cosmos Sequel!
« Reply #14 on: August 05, 2011, 10:58:52 AM »
Yeah, I'm sure it will be fine. As long as MacFarlane stays as far away from attempting to be "funny" with his scripts as possible I'm sure we'll all enjoy it.

"If I were an Algebra teacher I'd give everyone a letter grade but they'd have to figure out the value of the letter" -- A friend of mine

 

personate-rain