(1) GALAXY QUEST BURIED TOO? Australia’s News.com says two Galaxy Quest stars are making contradictory statements about the sequel’s future.
Sam Rockwell (“Guy Fleegman”) told The Nerdist podcast that it’s dead, Jim —
IT APPEARS the untimely death of much-loved actor Alan Rickman earlier this year has nixed any hope of a sequel to the 1999 sci-fi comedy Galaxy Quest.
Rickman’s co-star in the film, Sam Rockwell, revealed that talks were underway to make a follow-up to the cult classic, which saw a bunch of former sci-fi TV stars enlisted to save the world in a real-life battle against alien forces.
“We were ready to sign up for it,” Rockwell reveals on the Nerdist podcast.
“You know, Alan Rickman passed away. And then Tim Allen wasn’t available. He has a show. Everybody’s schedule was all weird. We were going to do this sequel on Amazon. It was going to shoot, like, right now.”
The deciding factor in the sequel not going ahead, Rockwell says, was Rickman’s death in January this year aged 69. Rickman passed away after a short battle with pancreatic cancer. “How do you fill that void of Alan Rickman?” asks Rockwell.
Tim Allen, on the other hand, told The Hollywood Reporter immediately following Rickman’s death that it was still on:
“I’m not supposed to say anything — I’m speaking way out of turn here — but Galaxy Quest is really close to being resurrected in a very creative way. It’s closer than I can tell you but I can’t say more than that. The real kicker is that Alan now has to be left out. It’s been a big shock on many levels,” he said at the time.
(2) KZIN ON LINE TWO. ZD Net reports “World’s brightest X-ray laser boosted with $1 billion upgrade”. David K.M. Klaus jokes, “Looks like Chuft-Captain is going to get a powerful enough X-Ray Laser for the Lying Bastard in time for the trip to the Ringworld.”
The world’s brightest X-ray laser, SLAC’s LCLS, has received a $1 billion cash injection to vastly improve its capabilities and our understanding of how the world works on the atomic level.
The Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory in Menlo Park, California, is the home of the Linac Coherent Light Source (LCLS) laser system, a critical component for researchers working on atom-based projects.
(3) GETTING WISDOM. Whiting Awards winners get financial counseling in addition to money. The New York Times explains in “Helping Writers With a Windfall Avoid a Downfall”.
“I might be close to solvent,” the poet and essayist Brian Blanchfield said, “but I still think like a deeply insolvent person.”
Mr. Blanchfield, 42, was in a conference room near Times Square recently as part of an unusual group: 10 sometimes-struggling writers suddenly in possession of $50,000 each. Winners of the 2016 Whiting Awards, given annually to up-and-coming authors of fiction, nonfiction, poetry and drama, they were learning how to handle not just the unexpected payouts but also the complicated emotions that money can inspire: ignorance, confusion, shame, panic, the occasional bout of inchoate elation….
Mitchell S. Jackson, 40 and the author of a novel and a book of essays and short stories, said that until recently he supported himself largely through teaching. At one time, he taught something like eight classes, paying between $1,800 and $5,500 each, at different colleges. He made a lot less than he had when he worked at his first job, dealing crack and other drugs as a teenager in Portland, Ore….
(4) THANK COG IT’S FRIDAY. The PRI radio show Science Friday this afternoon included a segment on “Telling the Story of Climate Change — In Fiction”(“Cli-Fi”) reports Rich Lynch. “Pablo Bacigalupi was one of the guests (via telephone). There was some interesting discussion about his novel The Water Knife.”
(5) WILL GALAKTIKA PAY? The story takes a promising turn – in “Galaktika Magazine: Statement from Istvan Burger” A. G. Carpenter reports:
Istvan Burger, publisher of Metropolis Media and Galaktika Magazine, has issued a statement regarding the reports of massive theft of translated work over the past decade.
Mandiner Magazine has a brief summary and the full statement in Hungarian here.
It seems that Burger is offering to compensate authors effected by the theft and admits that the foreign acquisitions have been mishandled and they “did not act with due diligence, caution, or even speed.”
(6) GOURMAND AT LARGE IN LA. Here’s how John Scalzi tapered off from yesterday’s In-N-Out burger lunch.
I asked for a lot of butter with my oatmeal. This hotel is not fucking around. pic.twitter.com/PdjkyQSStJ
— John Scalzi (@scalzi) April 8, 2016
(7) FAVORITES. Wim E. Crusio begins compiling his “Favorite science fiction classics (I)”. His first three picks are Time Enough for Love, The Witches of Karres, and The Left Hand of Darkness. He explains why. I don’t recall ever seeing Time Enough for Love on anybody’s list of favorites before. (I’ve read it a couple times — I’m not pointing that out because I disliked the book.)
(8) TODAY IN HISTORY
- April 8, 1990 — Twin Peaks premieres on ABC
(9) MORE REACTION TO DRAGON AWARDS.
Jason Sanford makes a powerful suggestion.
— Jason Sanford (@jasonsanford) April 8, 2016
At The Other McCain “Wombat-socho” writes —
I am probably the last person to find out that Dragon*Con, probably the largest non-comics convention in fandom, has finally bestirred itself and created its own set of awards – the Dragon Awards. This has been greeted with much glee by Sad and Rabid Puppies alike, with Declann Finn going so far as to declare victory. I’d say he and our Supreme Dark Lord are probably correct in predicting that the Dragons will almost certainly eclipse the Hugos, given the much larger voting base which makes any kind of gaming the nominations or the final vote futile. Looking forward to seeing how it works out.
So futile that Vox Day immediately set out to do that very thing?
I am registered to vote in the Dragon Awards and I would encourage you to do so as well. I’ll post my recommendations here the week after the Hugo shortlist is announced, in the event that any of you might happen to be curious about them.
Louis Antonelli isn’t completely opposed to gatekeeping, otherwise he wouldn’t be able to slam the door on fandom.
Hmmm… I guess this mean the fans will go one way, and Hugo your own way (sorry, couldn't resist the pun.)https://t.co/WvOxTXDcrY
— Lou Antonelli (@LouAntonelli) April 8, 2016
Sgt. Mom concludes “Another Round of Puppy Saddening” with an endorsement of the Dragon Awards, at Chicago Boyz.
To some followers of the Sad Puppy Saga situation, the whole matter of a prestigious award in science fiction being bestowed by a diminishing number of Worldcon members seemed quite pointless. They pointed out in comments and blog-posts, that Worldcon is becoming a smaller and more inward-turning science fiction gathering. Why shouldn’t a larger fan-convention gathering work up their own awards, and let the Hugos no-award themselves out of existence. Behold, in this last week, a massive, popular and long-established convention of science fiction and gaming enthusiasts – Dragon-con – has come up with their own proposals, to recognize and award not just a wide range of books and authors, but movies, and games as well. That should prove … interesting to say the least.
Sean O’Hara opines, “What the World Needs Now Is Another Sci-Fi Award Like I Need a Hole in My Head” at Yes, We Have No Culottes.
That being said, not all awards are created equal. That awards are inherently flawed doesn’t mean that some aren’t more flawed than others. The people championing the Dragon Awards (inevitably to be known as the Draggies) seem to think that the award will be better than the Hugos because DragonCon has a larger voter base than WorldCon. But, again, DragonCon is a regional convention. You get a larger sample size, but of a smaller cross-section of society. It’s already bad enough that SF awards are dominated by American tastes without narrowing it further to a specific section of the United States. The people championing the new award aren’t really doing it because of the larger voter base. They’re doing it because it’s nice and provincial — it’s not gonna be tainted by all those damned foreigners and their fellow travelers with their cosmopolitan tastes. This is going to be an award for Hobbits, picking out works full of nice, Hobbity sentiments, and the fact that not anyone outside the Shire will give a damn … well, nothing outside the Shire matters anyway.
Brad Torgersen told his Facebook friends.
And so: the final nail in the coffin of the Hugo awards. Looks like the Dragon Award is basically going to be doing everything Sad Puppies was hoping to get the Hugos to eventually do, but Dragon Con is doing it without having to wade through all the histrionic, caterwauling drama that resulted from the self-appointed defenders of Worldcon correctness and propriety throwing the genre’s all-time biggest temper tantrum. I raise my glass to this, and predict that within ten years, a gold-foil DRAGON AWARD label on a book is going to routinely replace both NEBULA and HUGO labels.
(10) SQUEAKING GATE. There is GamerGate mess around Baldur’s Gate now. Katherine Cross sums it up in an opinion piece “The Siege of Dragonspear drama and the video game community” at Gamasutra.
The past week has seen an explosion in drama amongst a particularly vocal minority of gamers angry about the inclusion of what they see as “social justice” themes into Beamdog’s Baldur’s Gate expansion The Siege of Dragonspear. The conflagration has a few sources; some players are complaining about bugs they claim Beamdog has been slow to fix, but that has been disingenuously used as a figleaf by some of the outraged crowd to mask the true source of their vitriol. Said source is elaborated on in this Niche Gamer article, which complains about–among other things–the very brief inclusion of a trans woman character who has only a minor speaking role, a silly “actually, it’s about ethics…” joke, a Goblin who calls your character racist, and the “sultry voiced rogue” Safana becoming a “sarcastic dissenter” who occasionally insults the player character.
An interesting tweet regarding this:
For those Baldur's Gate fans crying about a trans person in their game I asked the creator of the setting something. pic.twitter.com/5qw5IUQ7Ei
— Erik Scott (@MadAdam_) April 7, 2016
(11) CASHING IN THOSE COMICS. Yahoo! News knows about a “Superhero Dad Selling 5,000 Classic Comic Books for Daughter’s College Tuition”. See the benefits when people’s collections don’t get tossed?
Al Sanders may have spent his entire life reading about superheroes in his vast classic comic book collection, but now he’s turning into a real-life superhero by selling them all to help fund his daughter’s college tuition.
“As all parents who have college-age kids, we started putting together what it was going to cost and what we needed to do,” the doting dad from Seattle told ABC News of his decision to sell. “You start looking at those options you have, and my comic books were an option. That’s when I looked at their value, and I’m now trying to find a good home for them.”
[Thanks to Hampus Eckerman, Rich Lynch, Cat Eldridge, John King Tarpinian, Andrew Porter, and Will R. for some of these stories. Title credit belongs to File 770 contributing editor of the day Daniel Dern.]