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Old 17-08-2008, 09:23 AM   #1
dukedexter
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Default Gerry Anderson & new Thunderbirds

Hi,
I've recently had the pleasure of interviewing Gerry Anderson for the next issue of Andersonic which will be in print in a few weeks. Gerry had some interesting things to say about the treatment & fate of New Captain Scarlet and also about the prospect of a new series of Thunderbirds.

I'm sure everyone on the board will agree it's a perverse situation whereby the creator of Thunderbirds has to apply for the rights to remake it like any other Tom, Dick or Harry, worse still apparently encountering resistance on the way. I was wondering if anyone knows a journalist or someone who works on a national paper who can give this some attention. Maybe start a campaign for the return of Thunderbirds made by Gerry. Not Jonathan Frakes, not Spielberg or some guy down the road, but by the bloke who actually brought it into the world. Anyone able to help?

http://andersonic.co.uk/
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Old 17-08-2008, 10:05 AM   #2
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In fairness, Gerry SOLD the rights to Thunderbirds to Lew Grade (it formed part of a property deal) so it's no longer his property. Whether he's the man for the job as far as a new incarnation is concerned is a different question.
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Old 17-08-2008, 12:14 PM   #3
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From some of the ideas he put forward in a recent interview in Deathray magazine, I'm not so sure whether he's the right man for the job either. The original series came together more by a lucky combination of ideas and talents rather than one controlling vision, so I don't think that just having Gerry's name and input involved would be enough to recreate the kind of show that appealed - and still appeals - to so many people.
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Old 17-08-2008, 12:45 PM   #4
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I think a new series would work as a sequel to the original, set in the present with an all new set of five thunderbirds. You could probably take the youngest Tray boy and make him head of International Rescue. Also I think a new Thunderbirds needs to be aimed at adults (unlike that horrible movie), more like James Bond & Mission Impossible (less like Power Rangers).
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Old 17-08-2008, 01:04 PM   #5
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Why would the youngest be the head? That doesn't make sense to me.

Personally I think it should be left alone. It is what it is. Each episode had feature film production values. Any remake is likely to be tailored to the "awesome dude" and two second attention span demographic. Just make something completely new rather than poison the well.
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Old 17-08-2008, 01:05 PM   #6
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Actually '2099' if it was set in the present then it would be a prequel - as the original series is set in 2065-ish!

I also think that Gerry is not the right man for the job as I don't honestly believe that he knows or understands what made Thunderbirds successful in the first place. Someone our age who loves the original whould be a better choice as Gerry is more likely to alter everything like he did on NCS.
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Old 17-08-2008, 01:13 PM   #7
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Hey Steve, good to see the new issue is nearly ready.
Are you going to announce here when its out?
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Old 17-08-2008, 02:53 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark42 View Post
I also think that Gerry is not the right man for the job as I don't honestly believe that he knows or understands what made Thunderbirds successful in the first place.
I totally agree with that

Mike
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Old 17-08-2008, 03:06 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DX-SFX View Post
Why would the youngest be the head? That doesn't make sense to me.

Personally I think it should be left alone. It is what it is. Each episode had feature film production values. Any remake is likely to be tailored to the "awesome dude" and two second attention span demographic. Just make something completely new rather than poison the well.
That's pessimistic (I guess I struck a nerve).

Don’t take offence, I’m not looking at it from the perspective of die hard Thunderbirds fan. I’ve only just recently taken another look at it, after watching it as a child (many, many, many years ago). I watched the Thunderbirds Are Go movie and was surprised at just how much I enjoyed it.

I think an update could be done well and aimed at an older (read more mature) audience. To me the original Thunderbirds would have been considered an adult show if it had been done with real actors (instead of puppets). Though, chances are it wouldn’t have the same following it has today if it had been done with actors. To me there have been a few examples in recent years where they have done updates well (James Bond, Batman, Battestar etc).

I'm not one that holds on to old shows like they are the Holy Grail, I like to see updates when there done well (and ignore the bad ones when they are done badly). As for the "awesome dude" and two second attention span demographic, is it wrong for me to say I enjoyed the recent Transformers movie?

As for the youngest Tracy, I was just working on the idea of a kind of next generation, where the older brothers had retired leaving the youngest in charge (it was an idea of the top of my head).

Last edited by Space2099; 17-08-2008 at 03:19 PM.
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Old 17-08-2008, 03:37 PM   #10
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It's not touched a nerve at all. It's just from witnessing the hit rate of most remakes. If it's done CGI, it'll be just another CGI show. If you mess with the formula, then it won't be the same show. The only TV franchise that's ever made a successful comeback was The Scottish Series using the original cast and with only a ten year gap between series and movie (and even then they nearly blew it until movie number 2 brought them back on track).

I understand the youngest thing now. I just wondered what happened to the older brothers who are only a year or two older than the youngest so the youngest would be close to retiring too.

If it gets made, it won't be made for it's own sake like TV series used to be. It'll be made with the toy market in mind and all the other merchandise that goes with it. That'll immediately influence the direction the series will take. Even blockbuster movies like Indiana Jones and Mummy 3 are clearly structured around the inevitable computer game. These sorts of series like Thunderbirds are merely seen as marketing opportunities. The really good writing is reserved for series like CSI where no consideration for merchandise gets in the way. If it gets made, I'd be quite happy to see it handled any number of ways except the way it will almost certainly be made which is as a slave to toy sales.
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Old 17-08-2008, 03:50 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DX-SFX View Post
It's not touched a nerve at all. It's just from witnessing the hit rate of most remakes. If it's done CGI, it'll be just another CGI show. If you mess with the formula, then it won't be the same show. The only TV franchise that's ever made a successful comeback was The Scottish Series using the original cast and with only a ten year gap between series and movie (and even then they nearly blew it until movie number 2 brought them back on track).

I understand the youngest thing now. I just wondered what happened to the older brothers who are only a year or two older than the youngest so the youngest would be close to retiring too.

If it gets made, it won't be made for it's own sake like TV series used to be. It'll be made with the toy market in mind and all the other merchandise that goes with it. That'll immediately influence the direction the series will take. Even blockbuster movies like Indiana Jones and Mummy 3 are clearly structured around the inevitable computer game. These sorts of series like Thunderbirds are merely seen as marketing opportunities. The really good writing is reserved for series like CSI where no consideration for merchandise gets in the way. If it gets made, I'd be quite happy to see it handled any number of ways except the way it will almost certainly be made which is as a slave to toy sales.
Unfortunately you are probably right, as illustrated by the recent Thunderbird movie made by a bunch of people that didn't get Thunderbirds at all.

Still I can dream of an awesome (dude) live action Thunderbird series (or movie) aimed directly at me.
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Old 17-08-2008, 04:09 PM   #12
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If he gets as much as his old team back as he can I might be interested,
directors, story writers,special effects people and designers and just carry on where it left off.no new Thunderbirds craft or changing of the format.

just rescue's with a bit of espionage and terrorism as the original series had.

I think Sylvia made thunderbirds just as much as Gerry, the lady penelope and fashion influence but theyre never going to work together again.

also Team America showed that puppets can still work, albeit expensive

it just sounds like hes out for a quick buck like most remakes

Mike
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Old 17-08-2008, 05:06 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mike Delamar View Post
If he gets as much as his old team back as he can I might be interested,
directors, story writers,special effects people and designers and just carry on where it left off.no new Thunderbirds craft or changing of the format.

just rescue's with a bit of espionage and terrorism as the original series had.

I think Sylvia made thunderbirds just as much as Gerry, the lady penelope and fashion influence but theyre never going to work together again.

also Team America showed that puppets can still work, albeit expensive

it just sounds like hes out for a quick buck like most remakes

Mike

Most of that team are dead or no longer talking to Gerry.

What made Supermarionation, and in turn Thunderbirds, work was the tactile element. Even when the effects didn't work, it was still fantastic because it looked like your toys had come to life.

It's not the format that we're in love with. It's the complete package.
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Old 17-08-2008, 05:30 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Masterspy View Post
It's not the format that we're in love with. It's the complete package.
Yep.
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Old 17-08-2008, 07:37 PM   #15
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I know I've said it before but , if it aint broke , don't fix it . I do think there is a place for more thunderbirds , but it has to be done by people with vision ......and some of them frequent this forum .
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Old 17-08-2008, 07:51 PM   #16
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I think I'm right in saying Gerry Anderson doesn't like repeating himself, so no doubt he would change it in some way (similarly he seemed happy with the new direction of NCS and the techniques used).

Already we see a few differing opinions on this thread, about whether a remake should have new designs or stick with the originals (my own preference would be to keep the original model designs), so if Thunderbirds were to be remade, even amongst the most diehard fans,not everyone would be in agreement.

And to be honest, we are a tiny minority. Any new production would have to be aimed at a far, far larger audience, and I would suspect few backers/producers/film companies would be swayed by anything the original viewers had to say.

Reality of the business world I'm afraid.

Keith
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Old 17-08-2008, 07:57 PM   #17
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Speak for yourself about being an original viewer...

I reckon I know what made Thunderbirds worked and I reckon, if done for a movie, I know what could make it work for an audience of today.

It'd never be *the actual* Thunderbirds though. As I said - it's the complete package we love.
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Old 17-08-2008, 08:03 PM   #18
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Quote:
Speak for yourself about being an original viewer...
ehm, I meant a viewer of the original series, regadless of when you actually viewed the series on a regular basis.

Quote:
I reckon I know what made Thunderbirds worked and I reckon, if done for a movie, I know what could make it work for an audience of today.

It'd never be *the actual* Thunderbirds though. As I said - it's the complete package we love.
I think quite a few folks on this forum have similar thoughts as yourself (I certainly know what I liked from the series and how it could be extrapolated for a film), but trying to convince the folk I mentioned would be the most difficult part. Unfortunately unless you are Stephen Spielberg or George Lucas, one person does not not control the destiny of a film these days. Even the two Thunderbird films were not very successful because Gerry Anderson strayed too far from the original series format.

Keith

Last edited by saturnapollo; 17-08-2008 at 08:31 PM.
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Old 17-08-2008, 08:26 PM   #19
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regards Thunderbirds being a film

I really dont think Thunderbirds works as a movie, it needs to be a series so stories can develop and the audience learns every week.

for example

I would never show Thunderbirds are go or Thunderbird 6 to someone who'd never seen Thunderbirds before as you wouldnt get it,

you have to see the TV series first, and I think it only really works as a TV series

I remember as a kid, when I first saw the first few episodes, I was waiting every week then to see Thunderbird 3 and Thunderbird 4




Mike
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Old 17-08-2008, 08:32 PM   #20
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Good point Mike. Neither film was representaive of the series (especially in my opinion, Thunderbird 6).

Keith
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