A new webisode series from the creator of Star Trek: New Voyages plans on injecting new life into a golden age outer space hero: Buck Rogers Begins.
Production has begun on a new live-action Buck Rogers series that will start off telling the origins of the character before his adventures in the post-apocalyptic world of the 25th century. While the action will take place in the early portion of the 20th century, the show's producers are striving to keep their bar raised high, giving the show a "retro-modern" look and feel with high production values and effects, solid acting and a modern day, serious approach to its stories. "We've got our Buck and some other key characters and are in talks with actors who have serious science fiction credentials to join the show," said executive producer James Cawley, the man who created the hit web-based Star Trek: New Voyages series. "We will be using the technology we have today, to present the original version of the first sci-fi hero ever. Previous filmed incarnations never really captured the original Buck from the comic strips, which is what we aim to do."
But this new Buck Rogers serial isn't entirely forgetting its notable lineage. Cast in the roles of Buck's parents are Gil Gerard and Erin Gray, the actors that portrayed Rogers and Colonel Wilma Deering in the early 1980s Buck Rogers movie pilot and subsequent NBC television series, while Bobby Quinn Rice has landed the part of the young Buck.
The show is a co-production between Cawley Entertainment and the Dille Family Trust, the company that owns the rights to the property. Flint Dille will be another of the show's executive producers and serve as a consultant. Charles Root and Gary Evans from New Voyages are co-executive producers. And while it was just recently announced that Resident Evil director Paul WS Anderson is planning his own Buck Rogers 3D movie, the Buck Rogers Begins is a stand-alone vehicle of its own with no connection to the Anderson project.
Additional casting, location scouting and script development are now being done along with securing the participation of historical reenactment organizations to create realistic World War One battle scenes and everyday country life circa 1916-1922. The plan is to have the first episodes of Buck Rogers Begins ready for distribution online by mid-autumn 2010. But even though there's much work that still needs to be done before a complete episode can be aired online the production has released a three minute preview of the series on YouTube that serves as a preview of what's to come:
Regular updates on the production will be published on the series' official online home, buckrogersbegins.com.