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14 OCT 03:

Paul Simpson, SFX, Novermber 2003

Stargate co-creator and producer Brad Wright was interviewed by SFX Magazine for their November addition.  "At the moment, the future of the [Stargate] franchise is up in the air, but only in terms of the route the spin-off will take," Wright told SFX.

There seems to have been considerable confusion over the status of Stargate: Atlantis [which will focus on a new SG team].  At one point it appeared to have a green light from Sci Fi Channel for production this autumn, as soon as SG-1 had completed filming its final episode on 8th September.  But, according to Wright, that's not the case.  "It had been planned to do the two seasons concurrently," he says, indicating that SG-1 season 8 and Atlantis season 1 would have been shooting in the same February-September time period that SG-1 has traditionally used.  "Robert [Cooper] and I pitched that idea successfully to Sci Fi long before the summer.  But it's been a negotiation that has taken longer than we expected and it's now at the point time-wise that it may be impossible to do two shows simultaneously."

The benefits would have been clear.  "The plan was to do them, taking advantage of each other," he says, "and I would be very much involved in both shows if that were to be the case.  There's no other way to do it.  But I don't know if that's going to happen now.  It's in the hands of the people who deal with money.  There are other options which I've been in talks about, but I can't go into any detail now."

Suffice it to say that Wright is determined that the set-up for the spin-off that is part of the focus of the seventh year, and particularly the final two-parter, will not go to waste.  "It's a re-jigging of the original feature script," he explains.  "But it's been re-written so many times, and it's now on such an extraordinarily different scale that it's best to say that similar events happen in both."

Telling the story on the small screen has had an unexpected benefit.  "We were going to have to change elements of the story, because it was not accessible enough for MGM as a feature film in terms of the broad audience," he points out, "but now we have been allowed to preserve a lot of  what we originally intended, and make it a movie for the fans."  Wright believes that long-term fans of the Stargate saga will be rewarded by the pay-offs in the two-parter.

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