CURRENT STATUS: After Extinction was announced by Syfy Channel in August 2008, it spent some two and a half years in limbo. Brad Wright finally announced on April 17, 2011, that MGM would not be producing this or any other Stargate movies in the near future. The script has been written by Joseph Mallozzi and Paul Mullie, but Stargate: Extinction will most likely not be produced.
Below you can find additional notes and comments in chronological order, beginning with the network’s announcement of the film in August 2008.
NEWS & SPOILERS
"The show was doing well. But you don't wait until the show isn't doing well before you try to launch movies. If you are going to go do movies when the show has still got life left in it, that's a good time!" (Executive producer Brad Wright, in an interview with GateWorld)
"[The film] will be more [like] Continuum than Ark of Truth in that it will continue the story of Atlantis in a one-off offering. While the adventure will be stand-alone, the character moments will certainly draw on past experiences and future potential."
"While I like the idea of some crossover [with SG-1], I think SG-1 movies should be SG-1 movies and Atlantis movies Atlantis movies. Two movies of each a year would be a true best case scenario." (Writer/producer Joseph Mallozzi, in an interview with GateWorld)
"... There's obviously a passionate audience for Atlantis and the characters of Atlantis. And yes, they're absolutely going to continue in the movie franchise. But people need to mourn for a while and come to terms with it. I don't anticipate that that will subside quickly." (SCI FI president David Howe, in an interview with Multichannel News)
This brief statement was the first indication of a time frame for the film's production at The Bridge Studios in Vancouver, B.C. As of March, the film has not been given an official green light for filming. Actress Rachel Luttrell ("Teyla Emmagan") told GateWorld in an interview that neither she nor other members of the Atlantis cast had yet been contacted about the film (see below).
Executive producer Joseph Mallozzi stated that this doesn't mean it has been postponed (see below) -- indicating that the summer shooting date was probably never set.
"At one point, Brad was thinking about using this as a set-up for a similar drive in Stargate Universe, but he's since changed his mind. But since it IS set up now, Joe and I do intend to use it as part of the story for the Atlantis movie." (Executive producer Paul Mullie, in a Q&A at Joseph Mallozzi's blog)
"There are a lot of 'ifs' in place. And if it was going to happen I would be surprised if it happened this year." ("Teyla" actress Rachel Luttrell, in an interview with GateWorld)
"Alas, Project Twilight (which is what I dubbed the two hour event at the time) didn’t come to pass. The series ended and focus shifted to Stargate Universe. But not ALL of the focus because the intention has always been to make a movie. Actually, the focus has been to make two movies: an SG-1 movie, and an Atlantis movie.
"Now many of you are asking: 'Hey, we hear that production on the Atlantis movie is being held up by the economy and yet, you have the money to make a new series and that SG-1 movie. What gives?' Well, first of all, it's not a simple matter of us getting a whack of money and being able to pick and choose the projects we want to apply it to. Each production whether it be SGU, SG-1, or SGA, is contingent on their respective deals. And no two deals are alike. Furthermore, part of a project's production budget is made up of licensing fees from various broadcasters, sales to various territories both domestic and international. Now these entities are a fickle bunch and won't just buy anything. If they want product A, you can't just replace it with product B. And that's just one aspect of the many elements that go into any given deal. The bottom line is that the deal in place for Stargate Universe has different components than the deal for the SG-1 movie, which has different components than the deal for the SGA movie (yes, in spite of the fact that they are both Stargate movies, the deals are different).
"So even though the SG-1 movie has been greenlit, I can assure you that plans are still in place to move forward on the Atlantis movie as well. Brad is working on the SG-1 script while Paul and I hope to have a first draft of the Atlantis script by month's end (we're already past the halfway mark). No firm production dates for either movies, but if I was a betting man, I'd be looking at this fall.
"All this to say -- there's no need to get all negative. When there is a need, I'll let you all know but, at present, we're making progress on all fronts: SGU, SG-1, and SGA." (Writer/producer Joseph Mallozzi, in a post at his blog)
"So that's where we are right now. Joe and Paul have worked hard on the script, and they want to make it as much as you guys want to see it." (Executive producer Brad Wright, on stage at Creation's 2009 Vancouver Stargate convention)
"Some great preliminary notes from Carl who missed two reunion scenes (looking over the script, I tend to agree) and likes the idea of including a quiet scene for 'these two characters,' even going so far as to pitch out a version I liked a lot. Also received a casting suggestion that would turf the unknown Koenig in favor of someone a little more familiar. Discussions on the brass tacks of the production upcoming in June and with it, I'm hoping, finally, production dates." (Writer/producer Joseph Mallozzi, in a post at his blog)
"The movie would have picked up not long after the events of the Season Five finale, 'Enemy at the Gate.' In the opening scene, two astronauts (who turn out to be a couple of familiar faces -- Amelia Banks and Major Lorne) take a walk on the surface of the moon, their lunar stroll ending with a reveal of the city of Atlantis. A shuttle carrying Sam Carter and a group of dignitaries sweeps overhead and lands.
"Within the city's atmospherically shielded confines, Carter and her guests meet up with the science team headed by -- who else? -- Rodney McKay. Frustrated by the interruption to his ongoing research, McKay demonstrates a certain impatience with the whole dog-and-pony show, running through standards explanations, overviews, questions, and answers until -- an alarm suddenly sounds. The bewildered dignitaries are ushered out, leaving McKay, Carter, and Zelenka to investigate.
"An examination of the city's systems reveal the worst. A self-destruct has been initiated -- a safeguard, Rodney surmises, put in place by the Ancients in the event Atlantis was ever removed from the Pegasus Galaxy. And, once triggered, it cannot be disabled. Nothing short of a return to the Pegasus Galaxy will save the city from certain destruction.
"Of course, getting it there is easier said than done ...
"Anyway, that was the basic premise: A seeming new beginning. A threat to the city. And a desperate bid to outrace a deadly countdown. But who would join the journey? How would they get back to Pegasus? And what challenges would they face along the way?" (Executive producer Joseph Mallozzi, in a post at his blog)
"Of course, it's time to get the band back together and we check in with our various team members as they are called up and beamed away for the return journey: Teyla and her family, Keller, Beckett, Lorne, Zelenka and, of course, Sheppard and Ronon who are plucked away while receiving treatment at a local hospital following a barroom brawl (we went back and incorporated the scar actor Jason Momoa received following an incident near his L.A. home). Once everyone has assembled, McKay gives them the 411. Given the time constraints they face, they have to get back to Pegasus as quickly as possible -- meaning they'll have to use the wormhole drive again. Zelenka calculates that two jumps should do it.
"And they're off. Sort of. The first jump ends up burning out the drive, rendering it useless and leaving them stranded with the countdown click ticking down. However, a scan of the surrounding plants turns up a habitable world within range. They go there seeking help and, instead, end up involved in a wild time-travel themed adventure in which Todd, the wraith, turns out to be, simultaneously, their hugest threat and biggest ally.
"And that's all I'm going to say on the subject for now. Although it seems increasingly unlikely this movie will ever get made, I don't want to discount the possibility it may come to fruition through some alternate venue be it a comic book, novel, or radio play. Fingers crossed!" (Executive producer Joseph Mallozzi, in a post at his blog)