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August 1, 2014

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Syfy Updates Fairy Tales for Movie Franchise

by Brad Trechak, posted Feb 1st 2010 10:00AM

SyFySyFy has been reinventing things with mixed success. They have 'Battlestar Galactica', their gold standard, but they also have 'Flash Gordon' and numerous other bombs. They've also had mini-series based on classic tales like 'The Wizard of Oz' and 'Alice in Wonderland'. Now, they're going to even older stories by creating a television movie franchise based on classic fairy tales. One benefit of this idea is that nobody is owed any creator fees as most fairy tales are in the public domain.

Of course, much like their previous mini-series such as 'Tin Man' and 'Alice', these stories will have a modern, adult spin. For example, 'Hansel and Gretel' will now become a revenge flick. 'Little Red Riding Hood' could very well turn into a copy of 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' where Red hunts down werewolves.

This idea might work, and some of the movies might even become backdoor pilots if done well enough (despite the limited budget of each). Of course, this concept has already sort of been done with DC Comics' 'Fables' series, but using that directly would involve paying for rights.

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Syfy's Alice -- An early look

by Mike Moody, posted Dec 4th 2009 5:02PM
syfy alice
It's hard for me to get excited about something like Alice, Syfy's twisted new take on Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. NBC and Syfy seemingly produce these modern versions of classic tales for the same reason Hollywood studios push out stale remakes and sequels – because they already have a built in audience. And the producers don't have to worry about coming up with an original story. All they have to do is force some contempo quirkiness into the age-old text and be done with it. (Make the flamingos flying machines! Turn the caterpillar into a hookah-smoking Harry Dean Stanton!)

Similar to Syfy's Tin Man, its dark and tedious Wizard of Oz redo, Alice offers a bizarre retread of its classic source material. But writer-director Nick Willing (the brains behind Tin Man) smartly sets his tale in a futuristic version of Lewis Carroll's Wonderland. And he's created a brand new Alice too. She's a tough twentysomething brunette who teaches martial arts and high-kicks bad guys in the face.

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Modern 'Alice' Goes Through the Looking Glass

by Chris Jancelewicz, posted Dec 2nd 2009 11:55PM



Ever wonder what famous literary character Alice would be like if she were alive today? Well, ponder no more! Nick Willing, director of 2007's record-breaking, Emmy-winning miniseries 'Tin Man' is taking the classic Lewis Carroll story and putting a modern spin on it. Just as Willing took 'The Wizard of Oz' and twisted it into 'Tin Man', he's taken 'Alice in Wonderland' and 'Through the Looking Glass' and adapted them to the contemporary world in a 4-hour, 2-night miniseries 'Alice'.

Alice is now Alice Hamilton, a fiercely-independent twenty-something who witnesses her lover Jack Chase get kidnapped by two thugs and driven into darkness. Desperate to find Jack, Alice puts her trust in a stranger who calls himself White Rabbit, and suddenly finds herself on the other side of the looking glass.

She's a stranger in an outlandish city of twisted towers and casinos built out of playing cards, all under the rule of a devilish Queen who isn't happy about Alice's arrival. In her quest to get answers and find Jack, Alice must deal with a host of outrageous characters including the flying scarabs, the thundering Jabberwock, the Pool of Tears and the clinically insane Doctors Dee and Dum.

The 'Alice' cast is star-studded, including Canadian Caterina Scorsone as Alice, Kathy Bates as the Queen of Hearts, Tim Curry as Dodo, and Colm Meaney as the King of Hearts, among many others. AOL TV Canada sat down to talk to the director and Scorsone about the upcoming miniseries, and how the 150-year-old story is relevant to today's world.

Read Q&A After the Fold!

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David James Elliott in Sci Fi mini-series

by Brett Love, posted Jul 18th 2008 11:24AM

David James Elliott - JAG - Close To Home - MirabilisAnd when I say Sci Fi, I mean the network, not necessarily the content. I'm sure we could easily open up that oldie, but goodie, about what is science fiction and why certain things are ending up on the channel. We'll save that for another time though, as right now we should talk about JAG, with swords. Elliott (JAG) is set to star in Mirabilis. The four-hour mini tells the story of four knights who must come together to save their land, the titular town.

Elliott plays John, a knight seeking vengeance after his family was killed. He'll be joined by Natassia Malthe (DOA: Dead Or Alive. Yes, I watched it) as another of the knights, Perfidia. Perfidia is also John's love interest. The script is by Sam Egan (Jeremiah) and is being produced by Reunion Pictures. If you are wondering about the quality of production, I'll add that RHI Entertainment is involved and they are responsible for such Sci Fi treats as The Lost Empire. To be fair though, they also had a hand in Tin Man, so it could go either way. I'll watch it, but then I'm kind of the Mikey of bad sci fi. I'll watch anything, even SS Doomtrooper. It had Corin Nemec!

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Alice (and others) coming to Sci Fi

by Keith McDuffee, posted Mar 19th 2008 1:01PM
aliceAs Brad mentioned last night, a few new projects were mentioned during the Sci Fi Channel's upfront presentation. The one I'm most excited about (though at the same time frightened by) is the Battlestar Galactica spin-off, Caprica, which will have a two-hour "back-door pilot" shown probably later this year.

Another project mentioned which surprised me was Alice, described as a "modern day telling of Alice in Wonderland," much like Tin Man was for The Wizard of Oz. What surprised me about this is how Mark Stern, executive vice president of original programming for Sci Fi, reacted when I actually asked him about this idea last year during my visit to the sets in Vancouver.

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Nielsen cable ratings for the week ending December 9

by Bob Sassone, posted Dec 12th 2007 2:00PM

MNF logoHere are the weekly cable ratings, by number of viewers.

A note about these ratings. There are two ways to measure ratings, by household rating and by viewers. We choose to do them by viewers. Other sites might do them by households, so some of the numbers might be a bit different. The shows in the top 10 (or in the case of the regular networks, the top 20) will usually be the same, just rearranged a bit. For example, this week, The Closer was #3 in viewers but actually #2 in households. In viewers, Holiday in Handcuffs took that #2 spot.

And is anyone else made a little uneasy by the title Holiday in Handcuffs?

1. Monday Night Football (ESPN)

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Nielsen cable ratings for the week ending December 2

by Bob Sassone, posted Dec 6th 2007 8:08AM

MNF logoHere are the weekly cable ratings, by number of viewers.

What's this, a football game in the top ten besides Monday Night Football? I don't know how the Packers/Cowboys game on NFL Network came in second this week. Was it a pivotal game or something? I don't really watch football. Monday Night RAW shows up again (still not sure why it's considered two different hours instead of one, two-hour show), along with weekly favorite SpongeBob. Tin Man got great ratings for Sci-Fi Channel.

1. Monday Night Football (ESPN)

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Tin Man: Part Three

by Kristin Sample, posted Dec 5th 2007 8:05AM
Tin Man Cast(E03) So, I thought that last night's Tin Man was a vast improvement from the first night. Sunday night felt like a Sci-Fi Channel rip-off of the original story -- slightly modernized with scarier special effects (scarier in comparison to the overall-wearing lollipop-holding munchkins).

By contrast, Monday night proved that Tin Man had its own story to tell. This was a story that would use the Wizard of Oz as a jumping off point and rethink the classic.

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What's On Tonight: Rudolph, Reaper, Real Housewives

by Bob Sassone, posted Dec 4th 2007 4:02PM
  • Nip/TuckAt 8, CBS has Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer.
  • NBC has a new, two-hour Biggest Loser at 8, followed by a new Law and Order: SVU.
  • The CW has new episodes of Beauty and the Geek and Reaper.
  • Also at 8: Food Network has Rachael Ray's Holiday Entertaining in 60, followed by A Barefoot Contessa Holiday and An Italian Christmas with Mario and Giada.
  • At 9, Discovery has a new Dirty Jobs, then a new Everest: Beyond the Limit.
  • Lifetime has the movie Holiday Wishes at 9.
  • Sci-Fi has part 3 of Tin Man at 9.
  • Another Christmas movie: Santa Baby, on ABC Family at 9.
  • At 10, CBS has the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show.
  • ABC has a new Boston Legal at 10.
  • There's a new Nip/Tuck on FX at 10.
  • Bravo has a new Real Housewives of Orange County at 10.
  • TLC has a new Miami Ink at 10.
  • HBO has a new Costas Now at 10.

Check your local TV listings for more.

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Tin Man sets new ratings records for Sci Fi

by Jason Hughes, posted Dec 4th 2007 1:04PM

Tin ManAccording to preliminary data, and as reported by Variety, Tin Man appears to have beaten virtually every record the Sci Fi channel has ever seen. It's 6.4 million viewers surpassed the 6.1 million who saw Steven Spielberg's Taken, back in 2002. Demo ratings were equally as strong, where Tin Man unseated 2000's Dune in adults 18-49, and Taken again in adults 25-54.

With reviews coming in either mid-range to downright negative, it'll be interesting to see how these numbers continue through the mini-series' three-night run.

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Tin Man: Part Two

by Kristin Sample, posted Dec 4th 2007 8:41AM
Tin Man(E02) After reading the comments about last night's part one of Tin Man, I'm a bit skeptical about how many people will (or won't for that matter) tune in tonight. Sure, plenty of people found it entertaining but those who hated it seemed to really loathe it.

For myself, I thought it was pretty good but I like the original story enough to find almost any variation of it amusing. I also know not to expect much from a Sci-Fi channel miniseries. So, I fully anticipated that the special effects would be inconsistent and the dialogue would be insipid.

Nevertheless, the actors were good, great even. Alan Cumming is a genius and Neal McDonough is good enough as the embittered ex-Tin Man. I didn't think that Zooey Deschanel was that bad either--so many people complained about her. She does have an abrupt delivery though (which doesn't work well with some of her mediocre lines).

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What's On Tonight: Heroes, The Closer, October Road, Christmas specials

by Bob Sassone, posted Dec 3rd 2007 4:00PM
  • Alton BrownAt 8, NBC has the season finale (fall finale?) of Chuck, then the season finale (fall finale?) of Heroes, and then a new Life (special night - part 2 airs Weds at 10).
  • ABC has A Charlie Brown Christmas at 8, followed by new episodes of Samantha Who?, Notes from the Underbelly, and October Road.
  • ABC Family has Christmas specials starting at 8: The Year Without A Santa Claus, Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer & The Island of Misfit Toys, and Nestor The Long-Eared Christmas Donkey.
  • TNT has a new Christmas episode of The Closer at 8, then a new Saving Grace.
  • Also at 8: Food Network has a new Good Eats, followed by a new The Secret Life Of...
  • At 8:30, ESPN has the Patriots/Ravens game.
  • At 9, FOX has a new K-Ville.
  • USA has a new Monday Night RAW at 9.
  • Lifetime has the movie A Dad For Christmas at 9.
  • Sci-Fi has the second part of Tin Man. It's on at 9 as well.

Check your local TV listings for more.

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The Pretender to return in new digital format?

by Jason Hughes, posted Dec 3rd 2007 10:42AM

From 1996-2000, NBC had a modest hit on their hand with The Pretender, a show in which main character Jarod used his abilities to assume other people's identities to help those in need. Kind of a Quantum Leap with identity theft instead of bodysnatching. Creators Steven Long Mitchell and Craig Van Sickle, also of Tin Man, reportedly told SCI FI Wire they'd like to bring back the show in the digital medium. The relaunch, or continuation, could even feature original star Michael T. Weiss in the title role again.

They've reportedly brunched Weiss and begun laying the groundwork for the project, so it seems it's a done deal, just what exactly it means and when and where we'll be able to see it remains unclear.

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Tin Man: Part One

by Kristin Sample, posted Dec 3rd 2007 8:21AM
Tin Man(E01) Like many people, I am a big fan of The Wizard of Oz. For a little warm fuzzy nostalgia, I'll put on the original movie with Judy Garland. I've read Gregory Maguire's The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West (and loved that version too). I even own the soundtrack to Wicked (although I've yet to see the show). And who can forget The Wiz?

I guess it was only a matter of time until the Sci-Fi channel added their version to the ever-evolving list of stories about Dorothy and her journey through Oz. Tin Man aired last night on the Sci-Fi channel from 9-11 p.m. ET/PT and will continue tonight and tomorrow night (same channel, same time).

We began last night with D.G., the Midwestern waitress who speeds to work on her motorcycle, has weird dreams, and believes there's something more to life than waiting tables and windy prairies. D.G., unlike the gentler Dorothy, is a little too tough at times. I don't mind her talking back to everyone but I do mind her going after longcoats with a stick when she sees the men beating up Tin Man's family.

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What's On Tonight: 60 Minutes, Life Is Wild, Tin Man, Brotherhood

by Bob Sassone, posted Dec 2nd 2007 4:06PM
  • Mr. WarmthAt 7, CBS has a new 60 Minutes, followed by a new Amazing Race and the movie Pictures of Hollis Woods.
  • ABC has a new America's Funniest Home Videos at 7, then new episodes of Extreme Makeover, Desperate Housewives, and Brothers & Sisters.
  • NBC has a new Football Night in America at 7, then the Bengals/Steelers game.
  • There's a new CW Now on The CW at 7.
  • At 8, FOX has the BCS Selection Show.
  • If you like You've Got Mail, check out 1940's The Shop Around The Corner, the movie it was based on. It's on TCM at 8.
  • HBO has Mr. Warmth: The Don Rickles Project at 8.
  • At 9, The CW has a new Life is Wild.
  • Lifetime has Finding John Christmas at 9.
  • Food Network has a new Iron Chef America at 9, then a new holiday Dinner: Impossible.
  • Showtime has a new Dexter at 9, followed by the season finale of Brotherhood.
  • Also at 9: Sci-Fi has part one of the Tin Man miniseries.
  • At 9:30, FOX has a new American Dad.

Check your local TV listings for more.

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