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Old 03-05-2002, 18:12   #1 (permalink)
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Thumbs up Fox Rewinds Sci-Fi TV Classics

This would be really good I reckon, I used to love watching these shows.

HOLLYWOOD (Variety) - Rupert Murdoch's Fox Entertainment is traveling back in time to revive four sci-fi TV series: "Lost in Space," "The Time Tunnel," "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea" and "Land of the Giants."


It has pacted with the estate of late producer Irwin Allen who died in 1991, to air reruns as well as create new TV and film versions of the classic quartet.

Already in the works: a new series take on "Time Tunnel" for the Fox network and a two-hour NBC TV movie/backdoor pilot based on a new generation of characters who end up "Lost in Space."

Producers Kevin Burns and Jon Jashni, whose Synthesis Entertainment manages the interests of the Allen estate and essentially serves as Allen's creative proxy, will also work with other Fox Entertainment units to maximize the value of the franchise.

"They totally saw our vision," said Burns, who's been a fan of the Allen series since he was a teenager. "Fox trusted Jon and I as producers to shepherd these properties from a creative and commercial standpoint."

The pact contains three major components:

= A renewal of producer 20th Century Fox Television's off-network rights to distribute the original 83 episodes of "Lost in Space," which ran on CBS from 1965-68.

= A production agreement to revive "Time Tunnel," "Voyage" and "Land of the Giants." While 20th Television co-owned the three titles as the original producer of the shows, it needed Allen's estate on board in order to move forward with new incarnations.

= A new production agreement to revive "Lost in Space." The rights to the title had been at New Line, which developed the property into a 1998 feature, with hopes of turning it into a franchise.

The deal also covers potential feature films, merchandising and licensing.

"It has always been my intent to not only preserve but also expand upon Irwin's legacy," said Sheila Allen, Irwin Allen's widow. "This is the team that can extend his vision across an entirely new realm of epic television."

While "Time" and "Lost" are the first of the four properties to get new life, Burns and Jashni hope to figure out new ways to use the ideas behind "Voyage" and "Land." Timing, however, is essential in order to avoid flooding the market.

"It's akin to us being the guardians of four uniquely beautiful daughters," Jashni said. "You're not going to bring them all to the ball at once."
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