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TrekMovie.com Sci-Fi TV: Battlestar Galactica, Chuck, The Event, Smallville, V + more

Cross-posted at TrekMovie.com

In Sci-Fi TV this week there is big news for Galactica fans with news of a new BSG spin-ff. We also have news on the futures of Chuck, The Event, V, and even a possible 11th season for Smallville.

Summary of Column Contents

  • Syfy greenlights Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome backdoor pilot + Caprica future in doubt?
  • ABC cuts V season order to 10 episodes
  • The Event and Chuck get full season orders; Chuck season expands to 24 episodes
  • Could Smallville get an 11th season?
  • Christopher Lloyd to guest-star on Fringe
  • Fox orders additional scripts for Human Target
  • New character descriptions for Torchwood: The New World
  • The CW developing adaptation of L.J. Smith’s The Secret Circle

All that plus more including the latest television ratings, casting bites and new images and video previews, including the latest from Doctor Who.

GENRE TV NEWS

Syfy greenlights Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome backdoor pilot + Caprica future in doubt?

Ratings may be getting smaller and smaller for “Caprica” (last weeks episode drew a series-low 718,000 viewers), but that hasn’t dampened the desires of Syfy to push forward with another ‘BSG’ prequel. The network has announced that they’ve greenlit “Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome. The project, which would focus on a young William Adama — set 20 years after the events of “Caprica” and 40 years before the events of “Battlestar Galactica” — will be seen as a TV movie to be followed by a possible TV series. ‘Blood & Chrome’ was originally announced this past July and in that announcement Syfy said it was designed as a 9 to 10-part online series — 10 or so minutes each. But Mark Stern, Syfy’s executive vice president of original programming, says the decision was made to move forward with a TV movie/potential series pilot after a strong script was turned in by “Caprica” co-creator
(and Trek vet) Michael Taylor:

“When we read Michael’s script, it was so clearly a full-blown pilot for a series,” Stern said in a Thursday interview. “The scope is fantastic and bigger, I think, than anticipated, so we said, ‘Let’s do it as a 2-hour backdoor pilot.’ … We’re trying to get up and running as soon as possible.”

Stern also described the series in some detail:

“This is very much an action-adventure, war series,” Stern said. “This is definitely dealing with people who are fighting the fight. … As you hope ‘Battlestar’ would do, it kind of comments on that process a little bit… but not in a preachy way, not in an issues-oriented way, not in a hitting-you-over-the-head way. Really, the fabric and the canvas of the series are people in the fight and what they grapple with when it comes to each other and what they grapple with when it comes to the enemy they’re fighting.”

“Blood & Chrome” will be produced by Daid Eick and Michael Taylor, but Eick’s BSG co-creator (and Trek vet) Ron Moore will not be involved. So who will play William Adama? Will it be Nico Cortez who played the character in the BSG movie “Razor”? Stern says Cortez was “great” in the movie, but he’s not a lock for the role: “I’m assuming there will be a full casting process for this pilot, but with Nico at the top of the list,” Stern said. Stern also noted that there’s a chance we could meet other younger versions of BSG and Caprica characters. Production on the TV movie/pilot is expected to get underway in Vancouver, Canada in early 2011. Although there’s a chance the show could be ready by the fourth quarter of 2011, it more than likely wouldn’t launch until early 2012.

As for “Caprica”, the future does seem to be in some doubt. However, Stern told AOL:

To be really categorical about it, this is not about finding something else so we can get rid of ‘Caprica. I don’t know the fate of ‘Caprica’ yet, but, if anything, ‘Blood & Chrome’ going to series would only be a great opportunity to pair it with something.’

A decision on the future of Caprica will be made no later than Nov. 15. Here’s the latest promo for Caprica along with a 20-minute interview with Ron Moore and David Eick.

Interview with Ron Moore and David Eick [Daemon’s TV / Vimeo]

Read a transcript of the 20-minute interview here

Sneak peek at episode 1×13 – “False Labor” [Syfy]

Watch two more sneak peeks here and here

ABC cuts V season order to 10 episodes

It hasn’t been a very good past few weeks for “V” fans. First we learned that ABC had delayed the second season launch to January 4, 2011 — a nine month wait between finale to premiere — now comes word that the network has slashed the 13-episode second season order by three episodes:

…V is being reduced from 13 to 10 episodes for scheduling reasons. ABC last week announced that V will return January 4 and will air in Dancing with the Stars’ result show slot at 9 PM on Tuesdays, following fellow sci-fi drama No Ordinary Family. That gives V a 12-episode window until the spring season premiere of Dancing on March 29, but I hear the period is expected to include 2 preemptions, leading to V’s order getting trimmed. Since the series is still filming, V producers will adjust the storyline for a proper season ending.

Barring another change, “V” (9PM) will be paired up with “No Ordinary Family” (8PM) when it returns next January.

Season two set images [V Filming in Vancouver | Flickr via SpoilerTV]

Check out more set images here

Interview with Morena Baccarin, Laura Vandervoort and Jane Badler [Access Hollywood]

Watch another interview clip here

The Event and Chuck get full season orders; Chuck season expands to 24 episodes

NBC has given the go-ahead on full seasons for both “The Event” and “Chuck”. “The Event” gets the standard back-nine order –bringing its first season to 22 episodes — but with “Chuck”, which is now in its fourth season, the network decided to order an additional 11 episodes which would bring its fourth season to a total of 24 episodes. That’s the largest episode order for the series (Season 1: 13 episodes; Season 2: 22 episodes; Season three: 19 episodes). In other news, star Zachary Levi make his way behind the camera once more for episode 4×10 – “Chuck vs. the Leftovers”. Levi previously directed the season three episode “Chuck vs. the Beard”. Also, SpoilerTV reports that episode 4×11 will be called “Chuck vs. the Balcony”. On the scheduling front, NBC will be putting both “Chuck” and “The Event” on a brief hiatus during December to make room for “The Singoff”.

J.J. Abrams fans take note: “Undercovers”, which didn’t get off to a strong start and has been dropping since (6.83M viewers / 1.6 A18-49 rating average), did not get picked up for a full season pick-up announcements for several other new and returning NBC shows. That obviously doesn’t bode well for the future of the series, but Undercovers did get four additional scripts ordered last week so there still may be a future for the show.

Behind the scenes clip from “Chuck” – 4×06 – “Chuck vs. the Aisle of Terror” [NBC]

Promo for “Chuck vs. the Aisle of Terror” [YouTube]

Promotional stills for “The Event” – 1×06 – “Loyalty” [more at SpoilerTV]

Promo for “Loyalty” [YouTube]

Could Smallville get an 11th season?

Will this really be the 10th and final season of “Smallville”? Best answer? Probably. Although the show has experienced a ratings, and some say creative, high this season — the 200th episode drew a season-high 3.19M viewers and a 1.3 A18-49 rating — show runners Kelly Souders and Brian Peterson tell E! Online that they think it’s the final season:

I can’t say it’s the first time the words season 11 have creeped up this year,” laughed Brian. “As we’ve been pushing that it’s the final season of Smallville, I think it’s the final season of Smallville. We don’t know [of any] plans, but we never bet against ourselves and the show.

There are also more hints that we’ll see the transformation from Clark Kent to Superman this season, but likely not until late in the season:

He still has quite a bit to go through,” Kelly said. “We’ll see that the world around [Clark] puts up some major stumbling blocks for him. As much as he’s progressing things around his life, the environment around him is going to shift after this episode to a place where he’s still got some major battles to overcome. [But] he’s earning his stripes all along.

“Smallville”, the 10th and final (?) season, airs Friday nights at 8:00PM on The CW. Also, expect some more Justice League appearances toward the end of the season.

Promotional stills for episode 10×07 – “Ambush” [more at OSCK]

Season 10 set images [SpoilerTV]

Promo for episode 10×06 – “Harvest” [YouTube]

Christopher Lloyd to guest-star on Fringe

Christopher Lloyd (Back to the Future, Star Trek III) will guest-star on the 10th episode of “Fringe” Lloyd will play Roscoe Joyce, the keyboardist for Walter’s favorite band from the 70’s. According exec producer Jeff Pinker tells EW that the lives of Joyce and Walter have overlapped “in strange and unexpected ways.” John Noble teases Lloyd’s guest-spot on the show, telling TV Guide: “We all know how much Walter loves music, right? Well this fellow was one of his icons…He adored this man. So Walter gets to be a bit of a fanboy.”

In other Fringe news, here is the latest promo for episode 3×05 – “Amber 31422″ [Fringe Television / YouTube]

And here are some set images [more at SpoilerTV]

PREVIEW Videos & Images

Destination Truth

Sneak peek at episode 4×08 – “Guam Zombies/Fangalobolo” [Syfy]

Doctor Who

Season six set video [YouTube]

Watch two more set videos here and here

Sneak peek at “Amber 31422″ [YouTube]

CityTV cast interview [YouTube]

Ghost Hunters

Sneak peek at episode 6×20 – “The Oldest House In Georgia” [Syfy]

Misfits

Promo for season two [YouTube]

No Ordinary Family

Promotional stills for episode 1×09 – “No Ordinary Visitors” featuring guest-star Jackson Rathbone [more at KSiteTV]

Promo for episode 1×05 – “No Ordinary Quake” [YouTube]

Riese: Kingdom Falling

Promo for the Syfy (online) original series [Syfy]

Airs every Tuesday and Thursday on syfy.com/riese, 12pm/11c, beginning on Tuesday, October 26th.

The Sarah Jane Adventures

Promo for episode episodes 4×05-06 – “Death of the Doctor” [Blogtor Who / YouTube]

“Death of the Doctor” trailer narrated by Matt Smith [Blogtor Who / YouTube]

Promotional stills for “Death of the Doctor” [more at Blogtor Who]

Behind the scenes images from “Death of the Doctor” [more at Blogtor Who]

Scare Tactics

Sneak peek at episode 4×14 – “Vampire Stakeout” [Syfy]

Stargate Universe

Promotional stills for episode 2×05 – “Cloverdale” [more at SpoilerTV]

Sneak peek at “Cloverdale” [Syfy]

Supernatural

Promotional stills for episode 6×06 – “You Can’t Handle the Truth” [more at SPNSite]

Promo for “You Can’t Handle the Truth” [YouTube]

The Vampire Diaries

Season two promotional image [SpoilerTV]

November Sweeps posters [SpoilerTV, (2)]

Promo for episode 2×07 – “Masquerade” [YouTube]

Sneak peek at “Masquerade” [YouTube]

TV BITES

  • Fox has ordered two additional scripts for the second season of “Human Target”. [Deadline]
  • The third season premiere of “Sanctuary” on Syfy drew 1.79 million viewers and a 0.6 A18-49 rating. That was an increase of 20% in viewers and 50% in the demo over the two-hour season two finale this past January. [via YourEntNow]
  • “No Ordinary Family” will move to 9PM for three weeks November 30 – December 14, before shifting back to 8:00PM when it returns on January 4, 2011 (followed by the season two premiere of “V”). [via YourEntNow]
  • “Fringe” executive producer Jeff Pinkner hints that we may see the “Over Here” version of the character Lincoln Lee who is currently seen as a part of the Fringe Team in the “Over There” universe: “We look forward to spending more time learning about Lincoln. And you raise a very interesting point: What is his doppelgänger “Over Here” up to?!” [The Ausiello Files | EW]
  • Check out a spoiler-free review of the first two episodes of the new AMC series “The Walking Dead” over at io9.
  • Some basic descriptions have been revealed for some of the new CIA characters joining the cast of “Torchwood: The New World” (which premieres next summer on Starz). Esther Katusi is described as “very much an optimist” with a “strong faith in mankind”. More character descriptions at the link. [Den of Geek]
  • Check out an interview with Ben Richards, the creator of the upcoming post-Earth era sci-fi drama “Outcasts” over at Collider.
  • Stan Lee gave his stamp of approval to ABC and Marvel’s for their recently announced “Incredible Hulk” TV series: “Actually, I think the potential for a successful Hulk TV show is greater now than ever…For one thing, think of the sensational special effects available to us now, plus the fact that ol’ green skin is known and loved world-wide. Factor in a cameo by me and how can it miss?” [NY Daily News]
  • Elizabeth Craft and Sarah Fain (“Angel”, “Dollhouse”) are teaming up to develop an adaptation of L.J. Smith’s three-book series “The Secret Circle”… [Vulture]
  • …While Marti Noxon (“Buffy the Vampire Slayer”, “Angel”) is developing “Chloe” about “a young female con artist who dies and returns to earth as a Divine Covert Operator.). Both projects are in the script stage and would air on The CW, with Andrew Miller writing for “The Secret Code” and Jason Fuchs writing for “Chloe”. [Vulture]
  • The CW has given a full-season order to new drama “Nikita”. [via YourEntNow]
  • TV Reminder: The Syfy original movie “Red: Werewolf Hunter”, starring Felicia Day, debuts Saturday, October 30, at 9PM (ET/PT). [Syfy]
  • Various episode synopses/descriptions:
    • “Smallville” – 10×07 – “Ambush”. [OSCK]
    • “Smallville” – 10×08 – “Abandoned”. [KryptonSite]
    • “Supernatural” – 6×08 – “All Dogs Go To Heaven”. [KSiteTV]
    • “Fringe” – 3×05 – “Amber 31422″. [Fringe Television]
    • “Fringe” – 3×06 – “6955 kHz”. [TVOvermind]
    • “Fringe” – 3×07 – “The Abducted”. [TVOvermind]
    • “Stargate Universe” – 2×05 – “Cloverdale”. [SpoilerTV]
    • “Stargate Universe” – 2×06 – “Trial and Error”. [SpoilerTV]
    • “No Ordinary Family” – 1×07 – “No Ordinary Mobster”. [SpoilerTV]

CASTING BITES

  • Mindy Sterling and Natasha Leggero will co-star in the FX sci-fi comedy pilot “Alabama”. The series is “set a thousand years in the future aboard the United Nations peacekeeping spaceship: The Alabama and begins six years into their seven year mission to maintain peace and enforce treaties between planets in their jurisdiction: Sector 187-G.” [Deadline]
  • Bryan Callen has landed the lead role in MTV’s new COPS-type mockumentary series “Death Valley”. The show is about “the dark comedic adventures of cops in the ‘UTF’ (Undead Task Force).  [Deadline]
  • A recurring character on ABC’s “No Ordinary Family” will be killed off in an early December episode of the series… [The Ausiello Files | EW]
  • …Meanwhile, check out an interview with co-stars Michael Chiklis and Julie Benz at TV.com.
  • Robert Englund will guest-star on the December 10 episode of “Supernatural”. Englund will play a character named Dr. Robert. Executive producer Sera Gamble explains: “Robert plays an unlicensed doc who makes his living stitching folks up on the down low. One of our guys goes to him with a life-or-death problem.” [The Ausiello Files | EW]
  • Actress Necar Zadegan will play a “mysterious character” named Isabelle on the NBC freshman drama “The Event”. [The Ausiello Files | EW]
  • The producers of “True Blood” are looking for a new series regular called Marnie who is “taken over by a witch” for season four of the hit series. Filming begins on December 1. [SpolierTV]
  • Check out an interview with Tyler Posey and Crystal Reed, co-stars of MTV’s upcoming reboot “Teen Wolf”, over at Collider.
  • “Eureka” star Neil Grayston (Fargo) reveals that Wil Wheaton will appear in “half the season” and Felicia Day is in”a lot of [episodes]”, adding “[T]hey’re like members of the cast.” [E! Online]
  • Wil Wheaton’s third guest-spot on the CBS comedy “The Big Bang Theory” will revolve around another throwdown with Sheldon, this time during a screening for a restored version of “Raiders of the Lost Ark”. [E! Online]
  • Ian Tracey will play an “iconic character from history and literature” whom “we’ll love to hate” on the third season of “Sanctuary”. Executive producer Damian Kindler describes the character as “the inspiration for Jekyll and Hyde”. [E! Online]

SCI-FI RATINGS (Based on final national numbers unless otherwise noted) [@TravisYanan]

Caprica

As I noted above, episode 1×13 – “Things We Lock Away” hit a series-low last Tuesday, dropping to just 718,000 viewers (-15% from the episode prior) and a 0.3 A18-49 rating (nc). The 12-week average stands at a 1.10M viewers and a 0.4 A18-49 rating. Caprica has now officially shed more than half of its premiere audience (1.60M to 0.72M / -55%).

Stargate Universe

  • Episode 2×04 – “Pathogen” – 974,000 viewers (-20%) and a 0.4 A18-49 rating (-20%).

This is the first time in series history that “Stargate Universe” has dropped below 1M viewers for a first-run episode. That brings the second season average down to 1.11M viewers and a 0.5 A18-49 rating.

Destination Truth

Episode 4×06 rebounded to to 995,000 viewers (+11%) and a 0.4 A18-49 rating (+33%) after hitting a season-low last week. The season four average is now 1.02M viewers and a 0.4 A18-49 rating.

Ghost Hunters

After hitting a season-low the week prior, episode 6×19 improved to 2.21M viewers (+32%) and a 1.0 A18-49 rating (+43%). Season six is currently averaging a solid 2.14M viewers and a 0.9 A18-49 rating.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars

  • Episode 3×06 – “The Academy” – 1.80M viewers (+1%) and a 0.4 A18-49 rating (-20%).

The third season is currently averaging 1.91M viewers and a 0.4 A18-49 rating. In the network’s key demo (K2-11), the show is averaging a 2.2 rating.

Fringe

  • Episode 3×01 – “Olivia” – 5.73M viewers and a 2.1 A18-49 rating.
  • Episode 3×02 – “The Box” – 5.24M viewers (-9%) and a 1.9 A18-49 rating (-10%).
  • Episode 3×03 – “The Plateau” – 5.19M viewers (-1%) and a 2.0 A18-49 rating (+5%).
  • Episode 3×04 – “Do Shapeshifters Dream of Electric Sheep?” – 5.22M viewers (+1%) and a 2.0 A18-49 rating (nc).

Why Fox moved this show to Thursday nights continues to be a head-scratcher for me. It’s probably on the bubble this year, but on the plus side, it continues to hold steady despite a very tough time slot.

The Event

  • Episode 1×04 – “A Matter of Life and Death” – 6.50M viewers (-14%) and a 2.2 A18-49 rating (-8%).
  • Episode 1×05 – “Casualties of War” – 6.41M viewers (-1%) and a 2.2 A18-49 rating (nc).

From premiere (10.88M / 3.6 A18-49 rating) to the most recent episode, “The Event” has shed 41% of its audience (39% of its demo).  It may have just been given a full-season order, but that’s more a reflection of NBC’s weak status than strong performance of the show. The season average is now 8.08M viewers with a 2.7 A18-49 rating.

Chuck

  • Episode 3×01 – “Chuck vs. the Anniversary” – 5.79M viewers and a 2.0 A18-49 rating.
  • Episode 3×02 – “Chuck vs. the Suitcase” – 5.37M viewers and a 2.0 A18-49 rating.
  • Episode 3×03 – “Chuck vs. the Cubic Z” – 5.38M viewers and a 1.9 A18-49 rating.
  • Episode 3×04 – “Chuck vs. the Coup D’Etat” – 5.32M viewers and a 1.9 A18-49 rating.
  • Episode 3×05 – “Chuck vs. the Couch Lock” – 5.23M viewers and a 1.9 A18-49 rating.

Not a particularly strong performance for the show this season, but it has held steady, hence the NBC pick-up.

The Vampire Diaries

Episode 2×06 – “Plan B” hit a season-high with 3.62M viewers (+9%) and a season-high 1.7 A18-49 rating (+6%). That brings the show’s second season average to 3.37M viewers and a 1.6 A18-49 rating. This was the highest-rated episode of “The Vampire Diaries” since episode 13 last season (February 2009).

Nikita

Despite its stronger performing lead-in, “Nikita” episode 1×06 – “Resistance” fell slightly to 2.81M viewers (-3%) and a 1.0 A18-49 rating (-9%). The season average is now, ever so slowly, creeping down to below 3M viewers (3.05M viewers and a 1.1 A18-49 rating).

CHART (10/11/2010 to 10/17/2010)

You can follow me on Twitter at: Twitter.com/YourEntNow.

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