Can three comedians create a legit sci-fi show? Comedians Ryan Beil, Maddy Kelly, and Mark Chavez are going to find out. Over eight episodes, they’ll try to write a serious, and seriously nerdy, pilot script. When they run into trouble they’ll consult Hollywood experts who have worked on things like Star Trek, Star Wars, and Firefly and science fiction superstars like Neil deGrasse Tyson, Rainn Wilson, Emily VanDerWerff and Neill Blomkamp. And in the final episode, professional actors will read their script, bringing it to life — for better or worse.
Let's Make A Sci-Fi, Episode 8 (Part 2): We Made a Sci-Fi
Mark, Maddy, and Ryan listen to the table read of their pilot. They reflect on what worked, what didn’t, and what was the most embarrassing. They also pitch each other on what genre they’ll tackle next.
Let's Make A Sci-Fi, Episode 8 (Part 1): Progeny
The day is finally here. The sci-fi script is done and ready for all to judge. Introducing: Progeny.
Progeny, Episode 1: Kirby, a low level worker aboard a massive generational spaceship containing the last humans in the universe makes contact with a mysterious vessel that claims to be from Earth, sent to bring them back.
Featuring performances by Mark Meer (Mass Effect), Rainn Wilson (The Office), Suleka Mathew (Claws), Carly Pope (Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin), Ashleigh Ball (My Little Pony), Alessandro Juliani (BattleStar Galactica), Richard Newman (Transformers: Beast Wars), Barbara Pollard, and more.
Let's Make A Sci-Fi, Episode 7: Scary Executives (feat. Paul Bae)
Ryan, Mark, and Maddy send their script to an important, scary Hollywood executive for review. Podcaster-turned-TV writer Paul Bae drops by to reassure the comedians that they can survive the feedback process. With only days before actors read their script, executive producer Kerry Appleyard (Orphan Black) gives Ryan, Mark, and Maddy her notes—triggering major rewrites.
Let's Make A Sci-Fi, Episode 6: Comedy (feat. Rainn Wilson)
Ryan, Mark, and Maddy write their first draft, but after reading it aloud to each other they worry they’ve strayed galaxies far, far away from their serious goals. Comedy legend Rainn Wilson (Galaxy Quest, Star Trek: Discovery, The Office) helps the comedians find a balance between humour and hard science fiction.
Let's Make A Sci-Fi, Episode 5: Social Commentary (feat. Jose Molina)
Before diving into their first draft, the comedians map out the plot of their pilot and try to untangle the deeper messages they want their script to tackle. Screenwriters Jose Molina (Firefly) and Neill Blomkamp (District 9) assist, sharing their secrets on writing sci-fi plots with real-world purpose.
Let's Make A Sci-Fi, Episode 4: Science (feat. Neil deGrasse Tyson)
The gang has their world and their characters, but is there enough science in the fiction? They pit their concept against all-star experts—astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, “Bad Astronomer'' Phil Plaitt, and Hollywood science advisor Mika McKinnon (Sharknado) — to determine whether the pilot makes scientific sense. And when the science doesn’t check out, they get the experts to create some that does.
Very cool to hear the process for refining an idea into a script. I enjoyed each episodes focus on one aspect of the creative journey and having the experts on to give advice was prefect. Overall enjoyed my time listening to this, I can only hope for this to continue.
Love the host’s chemistry and humour Fun to follow the process. And after seeing Moonfall on the plane… Halle Barry would be better to chose your production. 😁
Great idea for a show! The podcast, not progeny. YThe only thing I would change is they should have wrote an audio drama from the get go. A lot of their overuse of exposition was increased by a narrator that is essentially reading stage notes. I would suggest that the writers check out some of the Alien or Star Wars audio dramas from recent years.
Not only would they be writing within the medium that the show will actually be presented in, but an audio drama series is more likely to get picked up than a TV series.
Another season would be great. I would prefer that they stick to scifi, but espionage would also be cool. That would be easier to set on earth and would be easier to do as an audio drama. They should avoid genres that require too much visualization.