Back in August, we learned that actor/writer Paul Scheer had been hired by Amazon to write a TV adaptation of the 1999 sci-fi comedy Galaxy Quest, a movie about a group of washed-up actors who used to star on a Star Trek-style sci-fi show who are swept up into a real space adventure. This is great news – Scheer’s comedic sensibilities are a perfect match for that world.
Yesterday, I had a chance to sit down and speak with him about his role in The Disaster Artist. While that full interview will be published closer to that film’s release, he gave me an update on Galaxy Quest that fans will be very excited to hear. He confirmed that the show will continue the story of the characters from the movie, and it’ll include two separate casts whose adventures merge as the season progresses. Read on for everything we know about the Galaxy Quest TV show so far.
Here is Scheer’s response when I asked if he could tell us anything more about the show:
“Right now, I just handed in my first script to Amazon, so I’m in that zone. I’m excited about it. It’s a bigger idea that’s kind of morphed and changed a little bit. Not much. The thing I keep on saying about it, without giving too much away – because it’s going to be so long before people get to see it, I don’t want people to get too burnt out on me telling you what it’s about before it gets to that point – but for me, it was really important to do service to a Galaxy Quest story that gives you everything that you want and indoctrinates people who have never seen Galaxy Quest into what the fun of that world is. That Tropic Thunder, Galaxy Quest world. And also to continue the story of our original characters and have consequences from the first film.
So it is mixing two casts. It’s separate kind of adventures that kind of merge, and I’m looking at this first season not as episodic, but as a serialized story. So, the only way I’ve been looking at it is, using everything from the first movie and making the reasons for everything not just – I want to avoid anything that could be viewed as a reboot for reboot’s sake. There are real reasons behind these choices – maybe too much so.”
We’d heard from our own sources that the show was aiming to mix the older cast with a newer one, but there’s our first official confirmation. And while I didn’t specifically ask him about bringing back the original cast (Tim Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Tony Shalhoub, Sam Rockwell, and Daryl Mitchell, minus the late Alan Rickman), it seems like that’d be a no-brainer.
It also sounds like the show will be directly addressing the huge pop cultural shift that happened between 1999 and today. Scheer continued:
“And then the other jumping off point was, I love that in 1999, as a fan of Star Trek and going to these conventions since I was a kid: sci-fi, fantasy, those worlds have changed so drastically. I really wanted to capture the difference between the original cast of Star Trek and the J.J. Abrams cast of Star Trek. I think that, to me, is my entry point. Sci-fi heroes are rock stars now. If you look at Thor, in 1999 if that movie came out, it would not be received the way it is. People would not want to see a cosmic, galactic thing on that level. But now we’re accepting it. I think just by virtue of that switch in our environment, it’ll make the story feel a little bit more fresh.”
I can see it now: the hot (and maybe a bit smarmy) young cast of a Galaxy Quest reboot within the world of the show, idolized by a new generation of fans, gets sucked into an intergalactic mission and needs the help of the original cast to survive. That’s admittedly just speculation on my part, but based on Scheer’s comments, it may not be too far off. He’s certainly saying all of the right things, and this has us even more excited for his take on Galaxy Quest. The hardest part will be waiting until we get to finally see it.