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Would JMS Accept A Script For A New B5 Show Written By Someone Else?


I was wondering if this could happen one day.We know that Gene Rodenberry created Star Trek but Rick Berman continued the story with TNG and Enterprise.There are plenty of talented writers out there who can write the script for a new B5 show but it wouldn't be possible without JMS's permission.

What's your opinion about that and who do you think will be the best writer for the job?
Babylon 5 belongs to JMS; it is his unique universe, and unlike other science fiction series -- such as Star Trek -- it is not set up for the next generation. When JMS went "Sleeping in Light," he burned all of the jumpgates behind him. I understand your feelings about wanting a new series; all of us would have killed to have Crusade or LotR pan out, or even to have another Lost Tale. And that's okay, because it is a testament to how perfectly Babylon 5 finished.

Another scriptwriter would not feel right -- not for one second. How torturous would it feel to always wonder "what if" JMS had more involvement in it? Even if the show turned out great, the question would hang over my mind. Besides, I think we play enough "what if" games as it is. Another hotshot writer could make a new show good, but then it wouldn't really be a Babylon 5 series.

JMS owns the story of the Babylon stations; it is as much his as your memories are yours. Would JMS accept a script for a new B5 show written by someone else?

Probably not, but I'm not him. I just know that he shouldn't.
Three issues here ...

Firstly, could it happen? Yes, it could, because JMS does not own Babylon 5, Warner Brothers do and whilst, as I understand it, JMS and WB Have a gentlemen's agreement that they wouldn't do more B5 without involving him in some capacity, in strictly legal terms they could do exactly that if they wanted to. The only exception would be a movie, as JMS does retain those rights so they couldn't do that without him.

Secondly, should it happen? I agree that it shouldn't, because of all the reasons others have outlined here ... however ...

Thirdly, I think the question you are asking is not whether JMS would accept a script for a new B5 show from another writer, but whether JMS would accept another writer having creative control over a new B5 show ... a la Rick Berman. After all, there were plenty of scripts in seasons 1 and 2 of the original show that were written by other writers in line with JMS' outlines and vision for the show.

I have no problem whatsoever with other writers playing in JMS' universe, as long as JMS is overseeing them. a new show with a new Exec Producer/showrunner would be more of an issue.
You guys are right that a new writer is a risky thing.If he makes the new show lame and silly this would affect the old one too.The new viewers wouldn't want to watch the old B5 if they know that the new one is a piece of crap.

There is no hesitation that a possible new script must get the approval of JMS before it becomes a TV show and he must have the creative control over that show.A good example of that kind of co-operation are the B5 books.They were not written by JMS but he approved them so we can consider them a true part of the B5 Universe.
If someone could come up with a B5 script that up to JMS's standards, who knows, he might consider it.:cool: I don't see him being quite that close minded. I do agree that the biggest obstacle to such an undertaking would be the studio.:cool: