[Be sure to check out our interviews with the Falling Skies cast HERE!]
TV shows are in full-force this summer at Comic-Con 2010 and that includes shows that haven’t aired yet. One show that is trying to make a big splash is next summer’s Falling Skies, which is being produced by Steven Spielberg himself.
Falling Skies is a sci-fi action/drama about a group of human survivors that are trying to stay alive after an alien invasion wipes out 80% of the earth’s population. Writer Robert Rodat clearly drew heavily from his work on Saving Private Ryan because the main character Tom Mason – played by ER‘s Noah Wyle – is a former teacher who becomes a military leader in a time of war, much like Tom Hanks character in Ryan.
Tom Mason is a former history professor at Harvard whose wife was killed and oldest son captured by the aliens for reasons yet to be revealed. Noah Wyle thinks he was good for this role because his character teaches American history and Wyle loves to study the American Revolution. He’s interested in showing how a cerebral character can become a great military leader in extreme moments of strife.
Moon Bloodgood plays a former pediatrician who ends up falling in love with Wyle’s character because they find themselves in the same situation. She more or less levels him out and keeps him balanced but she isn’t a fighter – yet. Her character doesn’t want to fight and would rather run and hide to survive (if you can call that surviving) but Wyle said that we will some interesting developments in her character as the season progresses.
Like any alien invasion would most likely go down, the extraterrestrial baddies attack and destroy the world’s infrastructure, electronic communications and power grids for the most popular strategic military targets, trying to disrupt the essence of human existence. Producer Marc Bernadin says that most alien invasion movies focus on the actual invasion but Falling Skies focuses more on the aftermath of the invasion and the day-to-day survival efforts of the remaining human population. The survivors must try and pull their lives together and rebuild their infrastructure, while still trying to stay out of the way of the aliens who are hunting them down.
The trailer for Falling Skies was certainly intriguing and TNT may very well have a good summer show on their hands. It helps tremendously that sci-fi guru Steven Spielberg is producing the show and it’s readily apparent in the trailer. The whole thing had a very heavy War of the Worlds feel but more like the 1988 TV show rather than the 2005 blockbuster movie. The show also draws from several other films including the Predator-style weapons and look of the aliens.
There appeared to be an inside joke aimed at sci-fi and cult fanboys with a quick shot of a supermarket called “Shop Smart” and one of the audience members even asked Bernadin if it was a sneaky hat tip to the Evil Dead. For those that can’t recall, Shop Smart was part of the slogan Ash used in The Evil Dead: “Shop Smart…Shop S-mart.” Bernadin denied any reference in the show to the cult-favorite film.
I’m thinking of calling BS because someone else asked what would make Falling Skies succeed where the TV show War of the Worlds failed, and Bernadin said he hadn’t heard of that show. This is a guy that worked on Battlestar Galactica and has most likely done a ton of research related to sci-fi alien movies and TV shows – to say he has never heard of a show like War of the Worlds borders on the ridiculous.
The trailer for Falling Skies isn’t available online yet, but as soon as it is we will give it to you and then you can make your own decision on how the show parallels with other sci-fi/alien films. Also be sure to check out the images from the show we posted a few weeks earlier.
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