“Battlestar Galactica”, developed by Glen A. Larson, originally aired its first episode on ABC, September 17th, 1978. It only ran for one season but it quickly became one of the most merchandized shows in the history of television.
Originally a story named “Adam’s Ark”, Glen A. Larson made some changes to the original – which was about people from another planet finding Earth – and turned his entire concept around to make it a story about a rag-tag fleet of people having to escape their home world in search for a new one. ABC’s interest in the show came after the immense popularity of the newly released “Star Wars” had shown the networks that science fiction could work as a brand new concept.
Over the years, several attempts have been made to reboot the original story, one by ABC, even. Known as “Battlestar Galactica 1980”, the 10 episode continuation of the original Battlestar Galactica was set 30 years after the original and told the story of scientific advancement of Earth. Earth’s technology was far beneath that of the Colonies, so a team of experts get sent to Earth to enhance their technology. Galactica 1980 saw a promising start but viewmanship quickly demised. In a flashback episode, Dirk Benedict made a comeback as Starbuck, but to no avail.
In the nineties, Richard Hatch, Apollo on the original Battlestar Galactica, tried to convince Universal Studios to do another reboot by making a mock trailer called: “Battlestar Galactica: The Second Coming”. In this trailer, Hatch promoted new story ideas, set Galactica a few decades after its original story had ended, came up with original designs and concepts and exciting special effects. There was also a 30 minute pilot made, but it never made the air.
you can see the trailer here:
Sadly, Universal Studios didn’t see a future in the project and decided against a further production of the show.
TIP: Richard Hatch talks some more about His history of Battlestar Galactica in our interview with him! To be posted soon!
In 2003, Sci-Fi channel did what many others had either failed to do or had refused to do before them. in Ronald D. Moore, they saw an opportunity to re-imagine the entire series. Meeting the most modern and best standards, “Battlestar Galactica: the miniseries” quickly became critically aclaimed and referred to as “The best science fiction on television, ever”.
“Battlestar Galactica” became a space-drama with zesty dialogues, human issues that dealt with true-to-life situations in an out of this world setting. Filtering out a lot of things from the original series, “Battlestar Galactica 2003”, no longer had aliens and it became less campy. It, however, kept most of the elements the fans enjoyed, it was still a ragtag fleet on the run from a Cylon attack, it still had your Starbuck and your Boomer (albeit in a somewhat different capacity) and it still had what fans enjoyed the most: Galactica.
After “Battlestar Galactica: the miniseries”, David Eick and Ronald D. Moore didn’t have the luxery of continuing the story straight away. Universal studios deemed a continuation of the miniseries too expensive. It was only after Sky One (UK) came in with a proposal, that Universal agreed upon continuing. As a result of that, the first season of “Battlestar Galactica” was aired on Sky One months prior to a U.S. Premiere.
“Battlestar Galactica” the re-imagination aired on Sci-Fi (later SyFy) channel for 4 seasons and remains one of the most critically acclaimed science fiction shows in the history of Sci-Fi.