Red Dwarf Film - Why?

Discussion in 'RED DWARF UNIVERSE' started by jaykhunter, Aug 15, 2012.

  1. jaykhunter

    jaykhunter Second Technician

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    Hey guys, was just thinking. Why were Doug and the lads trying to get a movie made? I'm a little resentful since I imagine we could've gotten a few more seasons if they weren't concentrating on making a film. Besides the money & fame obviously. In the Dwarfing USA docu Doug was disgusted by TV execs cackling to themselves about how rich they were going to be, so I don't think money was a motivator. The worst part is we never got a film so it was the worst of both worlds. One other thing, have there been any successful British TV to movie adaptions?
     
  2. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 Console Officer

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    According to the commentary in the script book the only reason season 8 was made in the first place was because they were contractually obliged to, at the outset no-one wanted to do it, so I don't think you can blame the movie for the cessation of the regular series. IIRC they wanted to do the Red Dwarf movie because they wanted to do a movie, that's pretty much it.

    As for TV to Movie crossovers, there were Mr Bean movies that were I believe at the very least financially successful. There's also Wallace and Gromitt, although I think I can recall that the Curse of the WereRabbit nearly finished off Aardmann.
     
  3. Slainmonkey

    Slainmonkey Deck Sergeant

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    Also given how truly dire series 8 was, it may have been a blessing in of itself that more wasn't made straight after it. Especially when the "humour" we got was things like naked Kryten, dancing blue midgits, Rimmer hitting himself in the balls with a hammer, Kryten's robot penis and T-rex bodily Fluids.........I'd hate to see how the show would have continued going down that path.
     
  4. besbvesdy

    besbvesdy Third Technician

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    it's always about money. you'll never make money out of a tv series unless you've got serious merchandising. you need a movie to make money. similar ideals kept the rights for doctor who tied up for years
     
  5. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 Console Officer

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    I'm not convinced. International broadcasting rights and advertising revenue, especially for prime time slots often make money for TV shows on their own, afterall if they didn't soaps like Coronation Street in the UK or Neighbours or Home And Away in Australia would have died a death a long time ago (I'm struggling to come up with why that would be a bad thing though...), in fact most TV outside of the latest saturday morning kids fad would be dead in the water.

    Of course the really serious money is to be had with Hollywood blockbusters, but even then a really bad film (Think Santa Claus the Movie from the 1980s) has the capacity to bankrupt the studio as well, so movies aren't necessarily a golden ticket either.
     
  6. Daniel

    Daniel Console Officer

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    I don't recall where I heard it, so this is purely hearsay, but I seem to recall once hearing that a lot of movies actually turn up a loss anyhow, with the exception of the major blockbusters and the like, at least in the short-to-mid term, and it's not until some way down the line with home video release and so on that they actually manage to break-even, let alone turn a noteworthy return.

    Again though, don't recall the source on that so take it with a pinch of salt.
     
  7. tortexturtle

    tortexturtle First Technician

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    I'm an independent filmmaker shooting my first full length feature. And I can tell you, I don't know how people make a movie when money's the sole motivator... I guess because they have more people working on it than I do (I wear many hats: writer, director, producer, editor, etc). But really what I'm saying is film-making (at least indie film making) is a labor of love. And those movies that don't make a return until the home dvd market is proof of that.
     
  8. Mardroid

    Mardroid Console Officer

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    I never knew that. A shame if true, as it's a pretty good entertaining film.
     
  9. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 Console Officer

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    Having checked the wikipedia entry on it, it would appear that my memory was faulty on this one. Still, you can chalk that one up as another British TV-to-Movie success story.
     
  10. Bluey

    Bluey Science Officer

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    Probably because they wanted to make something bigger, grander and more epic than the TV series could ever be.

    I was never fond of the movie idea and felt that TV was Dwarf's perfect medium. I also feared that if they made a movie they would never want to take a backwards step and go back down the television route again, and that would be it as far as the TV series was concerned.
     
  11. Simonr1978

    Simonr1978 Console Officer

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    Wasn't the movie supposed to be a complete re-imagining/reboot of Red Dwarf, same characters but completely different continuity? A bit like the difference between the books and TV series. Which kind of brings it's own problems as you'd then have three separate stories, all involving the same basic characters, all set in the same basic setting and all completely incompatible with one another.

    I have to agree though, the more I've heard about it, the more I'm glad it never came to fruition. I'm not fond of reboots in general and what seems to have come out about the movie seems to be honest pretty uninspiring.
     
  12. simulant37

    simulant37 Science Officer

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    I can only imagine how awful the movie would have been. The plot would probably have the gang going on holiday like in all those old awful sitcom movies. . .
     
  13. Daniel

    Daniel Console Officer

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    ... the plot would have been Dimension Jump?
     
  14. SixthDwarfer

    SixthDwarfer Supply Officer

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    The plot would have followed closer to 'Infinity Welcomes Careful Drivers' with a bit of 'Backwards' the novel thrown in. We'd meet Lister and Rimmer in their days onboard Red Dwarf before Lister is frozen and the crew are killed. Then we'd see Lister and Rimmer revived and rebooted respectively and their meeting of Cat and Kryten. Then, they'd face the real villains of the film - The Aganoids, who appear to be that continuities version of Simulants.
     
  15. karnie

    karnie Supply Officer

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    Is this true? If so, where are you referencing this from? I'm kind of hopeful someone somewhere has access to the fabled script.
     
  16. simulant37

    simulant37 Science Officer

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    Yeah, where is this info from? Not sure how repeating the backstory would make for an enjoyable film.
     
  17. bedfordfalls

    bedfordfalls Deck Sergeant

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    Have you never actually bothered to look around the website? There has been loads of stuff about the movie over the years.

    For example:

    http://www.reddwarf.co.uk/news/2003/04/18/making-the-movie/

    As for how "repeating the backstory would make an enjoyable film"....seriously, you can't think of any idea why that might be necessary?
     
  18. simulant37

    simulant37 Science Officer

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    Of course I can, just because I made a negative comment on the idea of repeating the backstory it doesn't mean I don't know why they would decided to do that. I made the observation that it would not make for an enjoyable film. If you look at the history of sitcom movies (including the recent The Inbetweeners) they didn't feel the need to repeat the backstory.
     
  19. Mardroid

    Mardroid Console Officer

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    Technically Agonoids were the Backwards simulants. (I wonder why Rob Grant decided to change the name.)

    In the film synopsis they're called Homo Sapienoids - the next step in human evolution combining humanity and machinery. (From that, I get the impression they're more like the Borg and Cybermen than simulants.)

    But yes, a story involved the origin story of the Dwarfers then went on to encounter these Sapienoid beings. Of course how or what happened we may never find out. One thing though- Backwards was by Rob Grant while the movie script was by Doug Naylor, so I imagine it wouldn't follow the plot of Backwards, apart form the homicidal biomechanical killers, of course.

    A shame really. I hope we see some of the film material in some form. Judging from Doug Naylor's book Last Human, he can manage a ripping sci-fi yarn just fine. If anything the extra running time a film provides would be an asset for him.
     
  20. bedfordfalls

    bedfordfalls Deck Sergeant

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    So you didn't enjoy the first series of Red Dwarf or the first Red Dwarf novel?
    Given that the backstory would likely encompass much of that material (and probably many new segments) done on a much grander scale with a better budget and a slightly different spin, why do you feel it wouldn't be enjoyable both to the new viewer and the person who was already familiar with the show?

    When people go to see Shakespeare do you think they sit there in the theatre saying; "huh, this isn't very enjoyable, I already knew he would murder that guy and become King from when I read the play at school!"
    Of course they don't. They are enjoying a familiar story being retold in an often new and interresting production.

    I recently went to see the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy radio show LIVE. Do you think the audience there sat saying "this isn't very enjoyable, I already knew the Vogons would destroy the Earth" or "this isn't very enjoyable, I knew all that stuff about the Petunias". No, once again, they enjoyed watching a new spin on something broadly familiar to them.

    I think what you actually mean is "I simulant37 would not personally enjoy watching a movie where elements of the original television backstory were reinterpreted". This is fair enough, (although you have yet to explain why) but stating that you 'can't see how it would be enjoyable' makes it seem you are viewing the product from a perspective the entire viewing audience might take and this clearly isn't the case...otherwise nobody would have found Infinity Welcomes Careful Drivers enjoyable...and clearly an enormous number of people did.

    As for why 'The Inbetweeners' didn't need to regurgitate it's backstory...what backstory? It's a show about teenagers being teenagers, it's theme is universally understood, you don't have to explain in the movie who these people are and why they are in some holiday resort...even without watching the TV show that would make perfect sense. Why are the people in 'on the buses' working on buses...er, it's there job, not too hard to work out. Why are Steptoe and Son rag and bone men who have a love hate father son relationship...come on, you can establish that in one scene without having to go into agonising detail about the episode where they drew a line across their house and told each other not to cross it.

    Red Dwarf on the other hand? Lots of questions: Why are they in space? Why are there only a handful of them? What happened to everyone else? Why is this man called Cat and why does he act like a cat? Why is this man a hologram? Why is there a robot? etc.
    You only have to look at this forum, particularly the "things in Red Dwawrf you just don't get" thread to see examples of how these things confused television viewers tuning in throughout the shows run who had missed the first series.

    Red Dwarf has a cult following in the UK, a minor following in other countries, it's not something that the vast majority of cinemagoers have assumed knowledge of. This film would have been marketed at a presumably global audience and been the start of a possible film franchise. You can't start a franchise by having a 10 second Holly summary without leaving new viewers feeling cheated.
     

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