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Sci-Fi Eureka

Discussion in 'Television & Streaming' started by Robby, Sep 28, 2008.

  1. Robby

    Robby The Robot

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    The Truth Behind Eureka's Improvisational Season Finale Revealed [Eureka]

    If you've ever watched a TV show and thought, "Wow, they're making it up as they go along," there's probably a voice in the back of your head that reminds you that TV shows are scripted well in advance so that the actors can learn lines, prop- and costume-people can get prepared and directors can start blocking out shots. Unless you work on Eureka, where network directives forced the season finale to be rewritten from scratch during shooting. And that's after three entirely different earlier drafts of the episode were written, submitted for network approval and then dismissed in the week prior to shooting. What went wrong?

    On the show's wonderful Eureka Unscripted blog, the somewhat unbelievable situation is explained:


    It all began with Eva Thorne. All season we knew we had to pay off her storyline, including the revelation that she was much older than anyone suspected. But what kind of story could we crouch this revelation in? Tons of ideas were batted around. First we toyed with our old fear idea… that everyone’s past would come back to haunt them, trigged by what was essentially a “fear cloud.”

    This version of the story was working really well, so much so that it made it all the way through several actual script drafts. A week before shooting, we were in great shape. Then the Network told us that while our script was good, it wasn’t appropriate for a season finale. It was thrown out.

    Now we know what you’re thinking. Throwing out a script a week before production? That’s CRAZY. Well, actually it could have been… but then something cool happened.

    One Wednesday before shooting, the entire writing staff convened and re-broke 308 [the episode's production number] from the ground up in one, marathon late-night session. Then, we divided the script up and everyone wrote an act. It was a real team effort that was pretty darn exhilarating.

    The new 308 script arrives in Vancouver with a mere four days to go before shooting began, and was received with raves. Somehow, we’d pulled off a miracle. Problem solved, right?

    Wrong.

    Two days before production began… the Powers That Be pulled the plug AGAIN on the script. Major elements were deemed inappropriate for a season finale. There was an especially large disagreement about the final fate of Eva Thorne – what should happen, and how it should be handled. Should Eva live or die? Should there be a romantic subplot between her and Henry? Should the person she came back for in the bunker be her a) husband, b) son, or c) brother? Also, should Eva be immortal (our original concept) or merely very, very old? And what about Zoe? As a result of her contact with Element X (the purple liquid), should she remain immortal, or at least immune to diseases for the rest of her natural life?

    Answering all these questions meant re-conviening the writing staff ALONG with the Network Big Cheeses for perhaps the more important story conference call in Eureka history (so far!). On the line was this: we were to shoot in two days. Could we have an entirely new script in time? Yes, but after a second, page-one rewrite… it would probably be very weak, and this was our season finale. And if we couldn’t have a script in time, should we delay or “push” the production schedule… a move that would, literally, cost anywhere from $175,000 to half-a-million dollars? Well, for better or for worse… the decision was made to have us all rewrite 308 YET AGAIN at the eleventh hour. But there was no way such an important episode—our mid season finale—could get done AND be in awesome shape in just 48 hours.

    So what did we end up doing?

    We wrote the script as we went along.

    NO. That is not a typo. The staff literally wrote the next days’ pages (whatever scenes were shooting the next day) and turned them in the night before. This meant that our production team and actors were literally getting the story in the morning and shooting it several hours later.

    Considering that the episode that resulted was more or less coherent, I'm pretty sure that the entire Eureka writing team - not to mention the actors and special effects team - deserve some kind of an award, even if it's only for patience. Here's hoping that the DVD will contain the scripts that we didn't get to see, if only so that we can find out why the SciFi Channel suits were so picky.

    By The Skin Of Our Teeth... [Eureka Unscripted]

    (Via io9)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 5, 2017
  2. Kevin

    Kevin Code Monkey Staff Abductee

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    Re: The Truth Behind Eureka's Improvisational Season Finale Revealed [Eureka]

    I admit it... I am a Eureka fan and have the DVR set to record it every week.

    The wrap-up of Eva Thorne did catch me a bit off guard since, based upon how her character was introduced and the 'shadowy' things she was doing, I was expecting a much darker, perhaps even sinister, plot to be revealed. To the writers credit, they did a good job of essentially taking the character in a 180* spin in only one episode.
     
  3. Tim

    Tim Creative Writer

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    Re: The Truth Behind Eureka's Improvisational Season Finale Revealed [Eureka]

    It was 'unusual' to say the least. Leaving by bus was shocking!
     
  4. Kevin

    Kevin Code Monkey Staff Abductee

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    Re: The Truth Behind Eureka's Improvisational Season Finale Revealed [Eureka]

    I'm just glad to read the article and see that I wasn't going crazy with what seemed to be an imminent romance between Henry & Eva; I was nearly expecting a 'good-bye kiss' in that last scene with those two to the point that I was starting to wonder if I missed an episode somewhere.
     
  5. OBgate

    OBgate Scout

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    Re: The Truth Behind Eureka's Improvisational Season Finale Revealed [Eureka]

    That was the season finale? I was hoping it was just the mid season finale or something. The season sure did seem to go by fast.

    I thought it was a good season though.
     
  6. Kevin

    Kevin Code Monkey Staff Abductee

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    Eureka, Australia?

    OK, this is a bit OT but if it comes even close to the actual Eureka TV show then this topic should get moved over to the Sci-Fi Discussion forum. ;)

    Apparently the powers that be in Australia want to build the real life version of Eureka by creating a town filled with their brightest residents that they can attract. 4,500 residents to be exact, recruited from around the world into the "brain city" with capacity for around 10,000.

    Planners are looking at having the new town up & running in 15 years.

    Interestingly the project is an academic one and is not at the direction of any government or military direction. If such a town did come to fruition, my bet would be that the military would keep a keen eye on it and would eventually come to control it through the college connection much like many US colleges have centers that have been into brain trusts for industrial & military organization.

    Of course the cynic in me sees this project more as a pork-barrel project to inject funds into the local economy and whether the project actually bears fruit is a moot point.
     
  7. Azhria Lilu

    Azhria Lilu Rocket Ranger

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    Known in the UK as A Town Called Eureka - the new season starts over here on Tuesday next week. I imagine it's already being viewed in the USA. I love this show. It's quirky and fun!
     
  8. Tim

    Tim Creative Writer

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  9. Tim

    Tim Creative Writer

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  10. Kevin

    Kevin Code Monkey Staff Abductee

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    Re: Eureka is back! s04e11 July 11th 2011

    I just saw it on the DVR... kind of a let down for a season opener. Was expecting the show to come back for the summer with more a 'bang' to bring potential new viewers in.
     
  11. Tim

    Tim Creative Writer

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    Re: Eureka is back! s04e11 July 11th 2011

    Well, the show hasn't been the best for a while, but this episode had a few things that stood out for me.

    1) The porthole staring incident, actually had me in laughter I was tearing up.
    2) The 'unrequited' love through timeline change interactions
    3) The 'experiment' in AI love and the close to human conversations.
     
  12. Azhria Lilu

    Azhria Lilu Rocket Ranger

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    Eureka Cancelled

    Sorry if there's already a thread - didn't spot one!

    Anyway.. bad bad bad bad bad!!!! What are SyFy thinking... well obviously they're not thinking at all. They can't say one week that they're happily going to do another 6 episodes for season 6 and then a week later turn around and say "sorry guys, we've changed our minds!"

    BAD!

    /rant over :(
     
  13. Kevin

    Kevin Code Monkey Staff Abductee

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    Re: Eureka Cancelled

    For those that may not follow the Cool Sci-Fi twitter feed :eek:, it is true... Eureka has been cancelled! :(

    Currently season 4 is showing on airing on SyFy and the episodes for season 5 are wrapping filming this month. It was stated earlier that an additional 6 episodes will be ordered as a mini season 6 that would wrap up the series to close it out. However... it would seem the Comcast, who are the new owners of NBC Universal who in turn are the owners of the SyFy Channel, intervened and could not come to financial terms with SyFy for those final 6 episodes. With that action the 6 episodes were cancelled and now season 5 will the be last for Eureka.

    The Eureka writers are now scrambling to make any revisions to the last episode of season 5, which is currently in the midst of filming, to server as both the season & series finale.


    I am really going to miss Eureka; it is a smart & funny show with a superb cast. Versus some of the other new shows on SyFy recently, like Alphas, Eureka might be an older show but it still outshines others. I will be willing to bet that Alphas does not last nearly as long as Eureka.

    On Twitter the "#saveeureka" has been quite busy lately as fans express their displeasure at the decision.
     
  14. Kevin

    Kevin Code Monkey Staff Abductee

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    Re: Eureka Cancelled

    Looks like the #saveeureka campaign has had at least a little bit of affect! :cool:

    Amy Berg, a writer for and the producer of Eureka, has posted on Twitter today that one additional show will be allowed so that the show can end cleanly.
     
  15. Wolfrunner

    Wolfrunner Rocket Ranger

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    Re: Eureka Cancelled

    Hello guys i've temporary left my working hibernation to post something on this thread.

    I was beginning to suspect that SyFy was going to cancel Eureka when they took that long break. It seemed that they were preparing the path to get rid of Eureka just like they're getting rid of all the sci fi series.

    I wouldn't be surprised when they change the channels name to "zero quality channel"
     
  16. Kevin

    Kevin Code Monkey Staff Abductee

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    Re: Eureka Cancelled

    Came across this comic recreating the decision to cancel Eureka... :ROFLMAO:

    [​IMG]
     
  17. Tim

    Tim Creative Writer

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    Re: Eureka Cancelled

    this decision is one of the reasons we should push and support webepisodes and non accredited creations. The detatchment between the execs and the viewership is the reason we 'can't have nice things' as they say.
     
  18. Kevin

    Kevin Code Monkey Staff Abductee

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    Re: Eureka Cancelled

    It would be interesting for a large scale series like Eureka switch to be webisodes. Sanctuary showed that there is a big enough audience for web series. If not web series then shopping the series to alternative outlets like Netflix (which is slowly starting to get into the original programming game) might be a good home as well.
     
  19. Azhria Lilu

    Azhria Lilu Rocket Ranger

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    Re: Eureka Cancelled

    Problem with web-based episodes is there are a LOT of people out whose net connections just can't stream them effectively - take mine for example... no really, take it... I barely get a 1meg download speed. Streaming tv is utterly impossible.. I can barely get a youtube vid to play without having to wait half an hour for it to buffer!
     
  20. Kevin

    Kevin Code Monkey Staff Abductee

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    Re: Eureka Cancelled

    I am not too far behind you with my Verizon DSL that is supposed to 1.5mb down but is usually slower. I think it would depend on the provider of the video since Netflix at least seems to be able to work fine with my slow DSL when streaming to the X-Box 360 but YouTube & other video sites I seem to have problems with when streaming to my PC.
     

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