HBO is moving into the sci-fi arena with an epic series exploring extraterrestrial contact. According to Deadline, The Spark, which is currently in development, “is set in a world undergoing a technological/industrial revolution in the near future when contacted by a signal from beyond the solar system. It centers on the human reaction to a mystery still spiritually and technologically out of reach and follows a female protagonist as she works on the cusp of the Earth’s effort to discover the origin of the signal.”
The man behind The Spark is Karl Gajdusek – creator/executive producer of ABC’s Last Resort series and co-writer of the Tom Cruise sci-fi, Oblivion. Gajdusek, who will write and executive produce The Spark, says his series will explore on a human level what he calls the five pillars of science fiction: “Alien Contact, Artificial Intelligence, Technological breakthroughs, Space Exploration/Adventure, and Origin Stories.”
Sounds great, but is this reminding everyone else of a certain 1985 Carl Sagan novel that became a certain 1997 Jodie Foster/Robert Zemeckis movie?
Contact – now sixteen years old – was arguably the last big-budget Hollywood production to demonstrate that the concept of entirely benevolent extraterrestrial contact can indeed rake-in the cash from satisfied cinemagoers. Here’s hoping that, like Contact, The Spark has the guts to shake ET’s hand, rather than blow it off with a bazooka and a one-liner.
Thanks to Rick MG at Daily Grail for the heads-up on this story.