Ever since Galaxy Quest premiered in 1999, there’s been talk of a continuation of the science fiction comedy. We’ve heard about sequels in both movie and television form, but to date, nothing’s ever happened.
Now, it looks as though there’s a new take in the works: in an interview with screenwriter Georgia Pritchett in the UK’s The Times (via Trek Movie), there’s a brief mention that one of the projects on her plate is a “television version” of the film, one that she’s working on with Simon Pegg.
If you haven’t seen it (it’s currently streaming on Paramount+), the film follows the cast of a once-popular science fiction TV series from the 1980s Galaxy Quest, conspicuously modeled after Star Trek. The actors who starred in it have a complicated relationship with the show that made them famous, and during a convention, they’re approached by some aliens called Thermians who believed that the adventures in the series weren’t actually a fictional television show, but a sort of documentary. Their civilization is being threatened by an evil alien named Sarris, and believe that the crew of the NSEA Protector can help save them from destruction. Adventures ensue.
Brushing aside the perennial question of “should we actually do a sequel to this?” that arises literally anytime a sequel is teased or announced, Galaxy Quest is one of those increasingly rare films that holds up well as a both an homage of science fiction and Star Trek, and as a side-splitting comedy in its own right. And, it stands up pretty nicely after more than two decades since it first appeared.
In 2014, MTV put together an extensive oral history of the making of the movie, and in it, Tim Allen mentioned that there was a script to a sequel floating around, and everyone else mentioned they’d be onboard to reprise their roles. After that, it looked as though there was some efforts forward: a year later, Paramount Television began talking about a spinoff for television, but in 2016, one of the movie’s more memorable actors, Alan Rickman, died, which seems to have taken the winds out of the sails of that particular project, which would have debuted on Amazon. According to Allen, it was very close to being greenlit.
But a year later, Amazon went back to the drawing board, tapping The League‘s Paul Scheer to write it. The project has since lingered in Hollywood purgatory, and as of January, the central cast was still interested in a reboot.
Now, there’s this nugget of news from The Times that it’s still being worked on. There isn’t much to go on — The Times‘ interview mentions the project in passing, along with Pegg’s involvement, and it sounds a bit like it’s something that a studio’s keeping under wraps until there’s something a bit more concrete to announce.
Still, it’s a tantalizing bit of news: Pritchett has a long career in writing television, working on shows like Veep, Succession, and Avenue 5, while Pegg got his comedic roots in shows like Spaced and movies like Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, Pegg’s involvement could be fun, given his resume, and it seems like he’d be equally at home working on the show as a writer or as an actor (especially given his high-profile role in J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek films).
There aren’t any other details about the project at the moment. It’s not clear if this is the same script that’s been floating around, or even if it’s a continuation of the original film. The project was headed to Amazon for a long time, but given Paramount’s new streaming service, Paramount+ and its growing Star Trek franchise, it feels like it would be a good fit there as well. Provided it doesn’t end up in development hell once again.