Paul Scheer says his “Galaxy Quest” TV series will be “what ‘The Force Awakens’ is to ‘Star Wars.’” But he also says the project is “in a little bit of a hold pattern.”
Scheer said the firing of Paramount TV president Amy Powell has slowed the momentum on his update of the beloved 1999 sci-fi comedy, a meta “Star Trek” homage starring Tim Allen and Sigourney Weaver. Amazon plans to stream Scheer’s new “Galaxy Quest” series, which comes from Gran Via Productions.
“We currently are in a little bit of a hold pattern because our executive at Paramount, Amy Powell, was fired for some insensitive comments,” Scheer said. (Powell has said the accusations against her are “baseless.”)
When it does lift off, Scheer’s planned update will honor not just “Star Trek” but “Star Wars.”
“We want to create this kind of thing that feels like this epic sequel, but a continuation. I compared it to what ‘The Force Awakens’ is to ‘Star Wars.’ It is continuing a story but bringing in new characters,” he said.
Scheer said he wants to create the same delight that “Galaxy Quest” brought him when he was a teen. As a young “Star Trek” fan, he appreciated that someone would so affectionately send up something he loved.
“One of my big fears is, what is so great about ‘Galaxy Quest’ is it’s a fish-out-of-water story, and I hate when you just go back to the same fish in the same pond. We need to kind of change it up,” he said.
“My pitch for ‘Galaxy Quest’ was, ‘How can we kind of blow this out and pay off things for the fans that love ‘Galaxy Quest,’ but more importantly — and the thing that I really wanted to do is — appeal to the ‘me’ of now. Who’s the 18-year-old version of me that loved ‘Galaxy Quest’ now? What would they want to see? Because I think that that is a movie that we haven’t really made yet: the ‘Tropic Thunder’ in the world of modern-day science fiction,” Scheer added. “When ‘Galaxy Quest’ came out, it was a niche thing, ‘Star Trek’ fandom is a niche thing. Now it is selling out Hall H in Comic-Con, so that’s kind of the impetus for the continuation.”
Scheer previously told IndieWire that his TV update of “Galaxy Quest” would mix two casts and acknowledge the triumphant rise of nerd culture since the original “Galaxy Quest” premiered nearly 20 years ago.
Scheer is one of the best and busiest comic minds in Hollywood. Besides “Galaxy Quest,” he’s also co-hosting the excellent “Unspooled” podcast, in which he and film critic Amy Nicholson revisit AFI’s top 100 films of all time. He also co-hosts “How Did This Get Made,” which examines films that will probably never make AFI’s top 100 list.
And he somehow found time to research and pitch an amazing idea for “Shoot This Now,” in which we talk about stories that should be made into movies or TV shows. His idea happens to be the best movie pitch we’ve ever heard on the podcast, so you may want to listen to the whole thing.