The oft-overlooked sci-fi comedy gem Galaxy Quest gets a lot right; a whip-smart take on science fiction tropes and nerd fandoms and a genuinely fun sci-fi adventure tale beyond the meta-commentary, but above all, the film absolutely nailed the casting. So naturally, if anybody’s going to pick up the Galaxy Quest mantle, it would be foolish not to bring back as many actors as possible.
Dean Parisot‘s 1999 cult classic lined up Sigourney Weaver, Alan Rickman, Sam Rockwell, Tony Shalhoub, Tim Allen, and Daryll Mitchell as the ensemble cast of a beloved sci-fi series who have to assume their roles when they get launched into space in a real-life intergalactic adventure. Amazon has been developing a Galaxy Quest series since 2015, but the project took a hit when Alan Rickman passed away in early 2016 and didn’t start picking up steam again until Amazon recruited The League‘s Paul Scheer to take over scriptwriting duties on the reinvention of the beloved film.
In an interview with the good folks over at Slashfilm, Scheer revealed that he has turned in the first script and shared the first concrete details on how he’s approaching the adaptation, including carrying over the story from the first film.
“Right now, I just handed in my first script to Amazon, so I’m in that zone…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… And also to continue the story of our original characters and have consequences from the first film.
Part of that also means mixing new and old casts, which means we’ll hopefully see as many familiar faces as you can cram inside a command center.
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.”
For Scheer, that also means taking a new look at nerd culture and how fandom has changed in the near 20 years since the original film.
“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.”
As Scheer makes clear in his quotes, the Galaxy Quest series is in early days yet so we’re a long way off from finding out just how much of the Quest crew comes back for the sequel series and how much the final product stays true to Sheer’s vision. It’ll be fun to see who they cast as the hot young cast and if they can serve up the on-brand meta-commentary on sequels, reboots, and the new nerddom.