After six years of battling time paradoxes on Lost, it appears that Jorge Garcia still can’t get enough of that island life, as it has just been announced that he will be returning to television in J.J. Abrams’ new pilot on Fox, entitled Alcatraz.
When we first reported on Abrams shopping around Alcatraz with fellow Lost executive producer Elizabeth Sarnoff, nothing was revealed about the project or what fans could expect. Now, we know that the series will center on a group of Alcatraz prisoners and guards who went missing thirty years ago, only to mysteriously reappear in the present day.
Described as a show “about secrets and the most infamous prison of all time,” Alcatraz will follow a team of FBI agents who are assigned the task of tracking down these time traveling characters, while simultaneously trying to figure out the mystery behind their disappearance all those years ago.
In the series, Garcia will play Dr. Diego Soto, the world’s foremost expert on Alcatraz, who is described as a “hippy geek.” This marks the first casting announcement for Alcatraz, after the news that Fox picked up the pilot two months ago.
Coincidentally, as Garcia was the first actor to be cast on Lost, he was also the first actor cast in Alcatraz. Although, this time, there was no need for an audition, as the role of Dr. Diego Soto was written specifically with Garcia in mind and he was the only actor they were going to approach for the role.
As usual, Abrams’ name is attached to a series to help promotion, but it is actually former Lost executive producer Elizabeth Sarnoff who wrote the final script for Alcatraz, following an earlier incarnation from former Kyle XY writers Steven Lilien and Bryan Wynbrandt. During production, Sarnoff will serve as showrunner and will be executive producing it with Abrams, Lilen, Wynbrandt and Bryan Burk.
With Alcatraz sounding like it could be an episode of Fringe, one has to wonder what plans Fox has for the series if it gets picked up. With the aforementioned Fringe finally bringing its story together, the ratings haven’t exactly reflected the new-found focus and the series is still considered a bubble show for the network.
So, the question has to be asked: Is there room for two fantastical shows on Fox or will it come down to a decision of one over the other? And, if that question does get asked, which show will make the cut?
Hopefully, in the case, we’ll be able to have our cake and eat it too.