Tuesday, May 31, 2011

People of Interest: Abrams and Spielberg (2011-2012 TV SPECIAL)

I am a crazy huge fan of tv shows that have a lot of hype. Many would disagree, but I find television challenging and thought-provoking. Given a good dialogue, great actors and even better producers, it can result in a show that makes us think, act, reflect.

But then there are big-budget, dino-chomping, time-travelling, amazon-exploring, adventure series that are there simply to entertain us. Sure, sometimes the storyline will falter (LOST) or characters will become unimportant and they drag the story along (HEROES) or they go too deep into the narrative and then get inexplicably cancelled (THE 4400). But for all of those, we get something rare like The Event, which I just found out may be picked up by Syfy. *crosses fingers*

This upcoming tv season will be no different. Only thing is, the major shows that are being showcased are produced or co-created by two people. These two Mega-Gods have created some of the best drama on television and on the big screen!

In one corner, we have light weight champion J.J. Abrams, who created hit television series Felicity, Alias, Lost, Fringer, and the short-lived yet tasteful Undercovers. He was at the helm of Mission:Impossible III, the Star Trek reboot, and Cloverfield (a favourite of mine).

In the other corner, we have heavy weight champion Steven Spieleberg who is so great, he doesn't even need an introduction. Dude, Jaws. Hello.

Here is what these two Deity's have to offer us in the Fall of 2011.


Mr. Abrams is the man when it comes to creating dramas with punch. He is the mastermind behind some of television's hottest shows and is the driving force behind two shows of Fall 2011's most anticipated lineup ever. And thankfully, he decided to work with the two actors that stood out the most in LOST, a show he also co-created. Of course, I am talking about THE Michael Emerson and Jorge Garcia.

Michael Emerson as Ben Linus
Michael Emerson
Jorge Garcia

Person of Interest (CBS, Tuesdays @ 9|8 central)
Michael Emerson, who portrayed the sinister and devious Benjamin Linus on LOST is returning to TV land after a year off, which to fans is like an eternity. He will be joining an all-star cast, that includes Jim Caviezel (Unknown, Angel Eyes) and the great Taraji P. Henson (Hustle & Flow, Curious Case of Benjamin Button). The show is based on a screenplay by J.J. Abrams and he is slated to be the executive producer of the show. And according to the network, it received the highest praise for a pilot in 15 years.

The story revolves around Emerson's character, a billionaire who develloped a computer program similar to the pre-cogs in Spielberg's Minority Report. This program can detect future crimes before they ever happen. Soon, Emerson's character hires a CIA agent, played by Caviezel, with a shady past to help him locate the crimes and stop them. So think Minority Report meets CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.

Alcatraz (FOX, Mondays @ 9|8 central. Midseason)
The always loveable Jorge Garcia is joining forces with J.J. Abrams and Elizabeth Sarnoff, who was a writer for LOST, to bring us a show that seems recycled but has plenty of potential. Rounding off the cast is fairly newcomer Sarah Jones (The Wedding Bells), Sam Neill (Major Movie Star), Parminder Nagra (E.R., Bend it Like Beckham), and Santiago Cabrera (Heroes, Che).

The premise is similar to that of The 4400. 302 wardens and prisoners dissapeared from Alcatraz fifty years ago, and now they suddenly reappear in present times. Sarah Jones plays a police officer to Garcia's "hippy geek". Jorge Garcia's character is the world's number one fan of Alcatraz and knows everything and anything about the abandonned prison island.

Hopefully the show will last and not be cancelled because everything about this screams HOMERUN! I mean: Nagra, Garcia, Neill, and Cabrera in the same show...produced by Abrams...written by Sarnoff. JIZZ IN MY PANTS!


So it isn't anything new to see a big name producer/director attached to a certain TV project, as did Mr. Berg a few years ago with Taken. What is new though, is how involved Spielberg is and how many shows he is working on. I may be incorrect but I have a list of three shows that is in the works with one airing as early as June. Can't wait!

Falling Skies (Premieres Sunday, June 19th on TNT)
Yes, another alien invasion show. This one though is set after the aliens have actually invaded us and it focuses on a band of survivors who call themselves the 2nd Mass. It sounds familiar to "V" so I'm a little skeptical about starting a show that I know did not fare well on the major networks (The Event, V, Dark Skies). Alien shows rarely get picked up for a second season.

But then again this is Steven Spielberg were talking about who knows how to master a good alien storyline. Not only that, but the cast is wicked ranging from Noah Wyle (ER, The Librarian Trilogy), Moon Bloodgood (Terminator: Salvation, Journeyman), and Will Paton (24, Numb3rs).

Noah Wyle searches for his son across a destroyed Earth with the help of survivors all the while they are trying to twart the uprising and destroy the Aliens. It's very Walking Dead. But with Aliens.

Nine Lives (No info as of yet)
So this show is either going to be shelved or they are keeping the details top secret. I can find barely anything about it except that Spielberg is presenting the show (in the same fashion as Taken), that it's a 12 hour miniseries and that it's about nine people who communicated with loved ones who have passed through near-death experience. If you find any info on the net, lemme know :)

Terra Nova (FOX, Mondays @ 10|9 central)
So this show has been talked about since last year, it was even suppose to be a midseason replacement in the winter of 2011 but it never happened. Well, the show has been pushed back and will now air in the fall of this year.

It's very much a return to Jurassic Park for Spielberg as this world deals with Dinosaurs and how deadly they can be. You see, the series follows a family that travels back in time, 85 million years to be precise, so they can re-colonize Earth and not make the same mistake again (movies and shows have grasped the concept that we have killed our planet, when will the population wake the eff up?).

Confusing part is, how can they repopulate the planet and not make the same mistakes in Jurassic Time when an asteroid is going to kill everything later on? They don't show this in the tv trailer, nor do they speculate about asteroids, but we know what happened to dinosaurs...so what's up with that?

Anyways, the cast is flawless once again and boasts the acting talents of Jason O'Mara (Life on Mars), Stephen Lang (The asshole from Avatar), Shelley Conn (Transit), Landon Liboiron (Degrassi:The Next Generation), Naomi Scott (Life Bites), and Allison Miller (Kings).

The preview is KICK-ASS and if you think it looks like a movie, it's cause it was filmed on a $150 million budget. I can get into the whole World Famine VS. $150 million tv show but I won't. Enjoy the trailer!! :) :)

So there it folks. This is what Abrams and Spielberg has to offer us for next year in television. Now, Abrams and Spielberg have to get togheter and create Lost Alcatraz of 4400 Heroes.

Candles are out,
Eleven's Ink

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