The Sci Fi Channel is changing their name

Oh yeah, the fans will just *love* this one!…To SyFy. No, seriously! It’s in The New York Times and everything!

One big advantage of the name change, the executives say, is that Sci Fi is vague — so generic, in fact, that it could not be trademarked. Syfy, with its unusual spelling, can be, which is also why diapers are called Luvs, an online video Web site is called Joost and a toothpaste is called Gleem.

“We couldn’t own Sci Fi; it’s a genre,” said Bonnie Hammer, the former president of Sci Fi who became the president of NBC Universal Cable Entertainment and Universal Cable Productions. “But we can own Syfy.”

Another benefit of the new name is that it is not “throwing the baby away with the bath water,” she added, because it is similar enough to the Sci Fi brand to convey continuity to “the fan-boys and -girls who love the genre.”

Oh honey: No. Just no. This is not the rebooting of Battlestar Galactica: This is taking what’s already perceived as a dumbed-down term for the genre (if only among the kind of people who tend to think that Star Wars Destroyed Science Fiction With Fun) and making it even more stupid. Which, I suppose, is more or less what we’ve come to expect from the people who have found crap like Seabeast and Mansquito viable programming choices.

Sci Fi might bring back Tin Man

My feelings exactly, Zooey.Neal McDonough, one of the stars of the Sci Fi’s Tin Man, revealed that there are talks to bring the mini back as a series. The 2007 ‘miniseries event’ got Sci Fi mondo ratings – it’s still their most-watched show ever – but praise for it has been few and and far between. (On the other hand, it does seem to have a minor following on Livejournal.)

Now, I had Tin Man sitting on my DVR for months, and I finally watched it back in August. The series presented itself as a Wizard of Oz reboot, but the underlying premise was a bit more than that. Alas, you don’t really find that out – the thing that throws everything in perspective, which is that this is Oz generations after Dorothy – until the third hour. Which is, quite frankly, long after someone with a less developed trainwreck syndrome than Genevieve Valentine or I probably should have stopped watching. Maybe the ratings just prove that our collective trainwreck syndrome is stronger than I thought. (Just like American Idol!)

Could the mini’s few interesting concepts (there are a few others, though they pale to crap like ‘The O.Z.’ and cleavage monkeys) make a successful series? I don’t really know. But I can’t help but hope we don’t find out.

Drive-by movie news: Kilted men pandering soon to a theatre near you

fanboys posterLadies and gentlemen, the Fanboys movie poster. Mmm… derivative! And not in the good way.

Drive-by movie news: Crowe doubleteams Nottingham, Thor, Blade Runner, Spider-Man

The only reason anyone still watches that crappy Costner movieAnd his merry men: Russell Crowe to play both Robin Hood and the sheriff in Ridley Scott’s Nottingham. Well, at least he can do the accent, unlike some actors I can think of. (Can we just cast Alan Rickman and pretend Prince of Thieves never happened? Even if they have to tone down the evil? No? Oh well.)

Next on the reboot train: Highlander

One can’t make enough “There can be only one!” jokes about the franchise that no one can ever be bothered to leave for dead. (Five movies, two TV shows, and I’m probably missing something.) But no, yesterday Summit Entertainment announced they’re planning to bring new life to Highlander, and have a couple of Iron Man writers aboard to prove it.

Original producer Peter Davis is returning, but no word on how many hilariously inappropriately-accented actors they plan to cast.

ETA: Flash Gordon, too? There are clearly too many Queen fans in this business.