Syfy Channel announced today that it has greenlit Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome, a backdoor pilot for a potential third BSG series. The show would chronicle the adventures of a young William Adama during the later years of the first Cylon War.
The network originally ordered the script for Blood & Chrome as a limited-run series of webisodes, but liked Michael Taylor’s script so much that it is sending it straight to television as a 2-hour movie event. The backdoor pilot could then turn into a full-fledged series, if Syfy likes what it sees.
Production should begin in Vancouver, British Columbia early next year. The show could be ready to premiere as early as Fall 2011, though TV Squad suggests after talking with Mark Stern, Syfy’s executive vice president of original programming, that if it is picked up for a full series a 2012 debut is more likely.
In addition to a younger “Husker” Adama the show will feature a younger, shinier Battlestar Galactica during the height of the Twelve Colonies. The production team took high-resolution scans of every nook of the Galactica sets before they were struck, and plan to recreate them digitally — a la Sanctuary‘s use of green stages and virtual sets.
Here’s how Syfy describes the show’s premise:
Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome takes place in the 10th year of the first Cylon war. As the battle between humans and their creation, a sentient robotic race, rages across the 12 colonial worlds, a brash rookie viper pilot enters the fray. Ensign William Adama, barely in his 20’s and a recent Academy graduate, finds himself assigned to the newest battlestar in the Colonial fleet … the Galactica. The talented but hot-headed risk-taker soon finds himself leading a dangerous top secret mission that, if successful, will turn the tide of the decade long war in favor of the desperate fleet.
Adama, of course, was played by Edward James Olmos in Syfy’s first Galactica series, which ran for four seasons from 2005 to 2009. Actor Nico Cortez (pictured left) played the younger character at this same time period in the telemovie Battlestar Galactica: Razor. While the role could potentially be recast, Stern told TV Squad’s Maureen Ryan that “I’m assuming there will be a full casting process for this pilot, but with Nico at the top of the list.”Stern described the series as “very much an action-adventure, war series.”
Younger versions of other familiar BSG characters (or older versions of characters from Caprica, set when Bill Adama is just a young boy) are possible.
In spite of Caprica‘s rough time attracting viewers — especially after moving to Tuesdays this month — Stern insists that Blood & Chrome is not intended to be a replacement for that show. “To be really categorical about it, this is not about finding something else so we can get rid of Caprica,” Stern told TV Squad. “I don’t know the fate of Caprica yet, but, if anything, Blood & Chrome going to series would only be a great opportunity to pair it with something.”
He said that a decision on Caprica should be made by November 15.
Taylor wrote the teleplay for the 2-hour Blood & Chrome pilot from a story by Eick, Taylor and Bradley Thompson & David Weddle. It will be executive produced by David Eick for Universal Cable Productions.