Babylon 5 is a television series created by J. Michael Straczynski. Due to its popularity, the series inspired a number of TV movies and spin-off series, and as such became a television franchise. The series first aired on PTEN on January 26, 1994, where it ran for four seasons. It then became apparent that PTEN would not order a fifth season and Straczynski's 5-year story arc would not be completed. However, at the eleventh hour, TNT picked up the show for a final, fifth season.
- Number of episodes produced: 110
- Original network(s): PTEN, TNT
- Original airdates: January 26, 1994 - November 30, 1997 (PTEN), January 21, 1998 - November 25, 1998 (TNT)
- Created by: J. Michael Straczynski
- Executive Producers: Douglas Netter & J. Michael Straczynski
- Producer: John Copeland
- Conceptual Consultant: Harlan Ellison
- Production Designer: John Iacovelli
- Music by: Christopher Franke
As various scripts were developed over the course of the series, they occasionally have very different titles to the episodes that where finally aired. Indeed, while the season titles for the first two years were decided upon very early on, J. Michael Straczynski took some time before finally settling on "Point of No Return." At one point "I am become Death, the Destroyer of Worlds" was somewhere near the top of the list. Some early working titles were intentionally vague or misleading so as to keep future plot directions secret for as long as possible.
Babylon 5 had 6 TV Movies, one of which served as the pilot to the series, one served as the pilot to the short lived spin off series Crusade and one was a pilot for a new TV Series which was never produced because the TV Movie did not receive high ratings. For More Information See:
- The Gathering
- In the Beginning
- River of Souls
- A Call to Arms
- The Legend of the Rangers
Crusade was a spin off from Babylon 5. The TV Movie A Call to Arms serves as a pilot to the series. However, creative differences between Straczynski and TNT caused problems; the network wanted more sex and violence and forced Straczynski to begin the first episode with a fistfight. The sex-and-violence request was later withdrawn and TNT in fact allocated more money to Crusade, giving the actors better uniforms and new sets mid-sea==External Links==
- Babylon 5 at the Internet Movie Database
- The Lurker's Guide to Babylon 5: The definitive Babylon 5 reference and episode guideson, but due to the creative differences TNT eventually decided to cancel the series after thirteen episodes had been produced, but before any of them were aired. At the time of the cancellation, no major story arcs had yet come into play,
The Legend of the RangersEdit
A made-for-TV movie titled The Legend of the Rangers|To Live and Die in Starlight was produced by the Sci Fi Channel. It was the proposed pilot episode of a new series titled Babylon 5: The Legend of the Rangers. Rescheduled after the September 11, 2001 attacks, the movie aired on January 19, 2002. However, it was scheduled against a NFL AFC Divisional Championship playoff game featuring the New England Patriots and the Oakland Raiders. The pilot's poor ratings killed the network's interest in a series.
The Memory of ShadowsEdit
In 2004 and early 2005, rumors widely circulated about a planned Babylon 5 movie for theatrical release. However, on February 25, 2005, a post from Straczynski announced that the project had fallen through and was for all practical purposes dead. The proposed movie titled The Memory of Shadows (TMOS), was written by Straczynski. Filming was to have begun in April 2005 in the UK with Steven Beck as the director.
Several sources have claimed that factions within Warner Bros. wanted to recast established Babylon 5 roles with younger and more well known actors, causing a major controversy among fans. Straczynski has acknowledged the subject and has stated that the negotiations were problematic, but has said that he is unable to directly comment on the issue
The Lost TalesEdit
A new project set in "Babylon 5" universe was announced by Straczynski at San Diego Comic Con 2006. Babylon 5: The Lost Tales was supposed to be a set of mini-stories featuring established characters from the series. The project was intended to be a straight-to-video DVD release. The production of the first anthology of two stories, named collectively Voices in the Dark commenced in November 2006 with Straczynski writing, producing and directing. Voices in the Dark was released on July 31st, 2007. Straczynski has since announced that there will be no more future releases of the Lost Tales, as the only thing he is interested in making regarding Babylon 5 is a full budget feature film.
- The Babylon 5 station is an "O'Neil class space station". Gerard K. O'Neill was a physicist and space visionary who suggested the use of large rotating cylindrical habitats for future space stations.
- The Medlab was deliberately designed to display few tools and instruments. The designers considered less to be more in guessing future medical technology.
- The Babylon 5 station is claimed to be operated by an artificial intelligence computer system provided by the Centauri.
- Babylon 5 filmmakers received informal technical advice on the series from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
- During the run of the show, the show's creator, J. Michael Straczynski, was contacted by NASA officials who asked if they could borrow the design of the show's fighters - called, 'Starfuries' - for use on the International Space Station. NASA wanted to use the ships as a combination tug and forklift, adding, "Your design is the most practical we've seen." Straczynski replied that it was fine with him, but that NASA had to call them Starfuries. NASA agreed.
- The Omega-class destroyers used by the Earth Alliance military were based on the design of the Russian spaceship 'Leonov' from the film 2010.
- During the first season, Commander Sinclair said, "This station created artificial gravity by rotation, so the room never stops spinning." Reportedly, the animating team had the station spinning at a near-Earth gravity simulation. This was determined by a physicist who was also a fan of the show, who determined the approximate size of a human being on the edge of the station and extrapolating.
- The inspiration for the design of the Vorlon ships was a clove of garlic.