As to the involvement of JMS in any new B5 stuff, for me that would have to be an essential. Without him, the whole universe becomes nothing more than a franchise - how could you expect someone else to come in with the fire and passion for the story (someone else's story) that JMS has.
He wasn't "hacked off" about it finishing "before its time." He did express that he felt the show could run for a few more seasons though. He did know it was a 5 year run show, but expressed to JMS that he could or should keep it going for a season or two.IIRC, wasn't Bruce basically hacked off about the fact that B5 finished "before its time", i.e. much the same sentiment that Jerry Doyle expressed in this interview, and discovering that Sheridan was not going to be a central character in the spin-off series, contrary to his initial understanding.
A couple of points on this.
There have been no discussions concerning a return of the Babylon 5 series
between myself and WB or any other studio or network. Nor do I think anything
is likely in that area.
Jerry took umbrage when, a few years ago, I commented on his statements that he
would be able to put togeether a new B5 series deal. From the interview, he
still seems to be in high dudgeon over this. But the fact remains: I was
correct in my statement, he didn't have the pieces in place to make it happen.
If he'd had the wherewithal to make it happen, it would've; it didn't, so he
didn't. My statement was correct.
Once again, the pieces simply aren't there. He has lined up a radio guy who
feels the show should return. Which is great, it's a terrific compliment. But
that is not in any way, manner, shape or form anywhere near anything of a
serious nature in terms of getting a show on the air.
I've always been happy to listen to anyone -- Jerry, his pals, anybody -- who
would come to me with a serious proposal and have the moxie, the money, and the
resources to make it happen. It hasn't. That's the simple fact of it.
Jerry's a terrific operator, he always has an angle going, he's always working
it...but that ain't the same thing as always having the real deal in hand. If
WB were involved in this -- and they'd have to be -- both Doug and I would be
in the loop by contract. But that is not the case. I spoke with Doug five
minutes ago as I type this, and he confirmed: there is nothing happening on
this front other than Jerry talkling with the radio guy.
As for his notion that the characters in Crusade were just B5 characters with
the names changed...as the person who created those characters, nothing could
be further from the truth. Nor was Bruce ever set to be the star of Crusade.
There's a natural tendency for people to hear or think what they expect, what
they want to hear. I told all the B5 cast members as a group that there would
certainly be opportunities for guest appearances throughout Crusade, but at no
point did I promise Bruce that he would be the lead of the series, or that we'd
simply transplant the characters. It wouldn't be a new series if we did that.
Finally, in his interview, both Jerry and Bruce seem to blame me for B5 not
being in its 10th year right now. Which is true and not true. B5 was always
meant to be a 5 year story; every actor knew that going in. It wasn't like
this was a surprise at the last minute. We all knew the deal.
WB had told us to shut down after year 4 because even though the show was doing
well, our network, PTEN, was going out of business. At the last minute, TNT
took on the task of financing a fifth year *in order to get the end of the
five-year story*. They never talked about anything beyond that, nor did anyone
else. So anything else is a moot point. I don't think that TNT would ever
have committed to anything more than one season in any event. They wanted the
end of the story to make the package complete. If that had been a six-year
arc, they would not have picked it up because two years would've been too
So them's is the facts.
Yes, there's one or two things percolating n the B5 universe that may be of
interest, but neither of them are series deals.
I hate to throw water on this, but I don't want fans to get all excited about
something that's simply not happening anywhere except in Jerry's interview.
He probably won't like that I said this any more than he did the last time, but
then as now, I have to put out the facts and let the passage of time validate
(all message content (c) 2003 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
IIRC, wasn't Bruce basically hacked off about the fact that B5 finished "before its time", i.e. much the same sentiment that Jerry Doyle expressed in this interview, and discovering that Sheridan was not going to be a central character in the spin-off series, contrary to his initial understanding.
Not what we want to hear.
but neither of them...
I wonder why Mr. Doyle is obsessing so much over this. It was a great 5 season run. It's just awful there couldn't have been more of it.