Week of October 22, 2001
Raoul Kraushaar, 1908-2001.
Television and film composer Raoul Kraushaar may not have been a
household name, but chances are you've heard his work. The French-born
musician's career spanned over five decades, beginning with a Gene Autry
film in 1937. He went on to provide music for such TV golden-age TV
classics as Lassie, Bonanza, Father Knows Best, Dennis The Menace and My
Three Sons, and even has at least one genre credit to his name (the
original theatrical version of Invaders From Mars). He
Jay Livingston, 1915-2001.
The songsmith who penned the signature tunes for such classic television
gems as Mr. Ed and Bonanza has died. Jay Livingston is well-known for
his long partnership with fellow songwriter Ray Evans; together, they
composed such songs as Buttons And Bows, Que Sera, Sera,
and Mona Lisa, and they even racked up three Academy Awards out of
a total seven nominations. Livingston's final musical project was a CD,
due for a 2002 release, of Michael Feinstein renditions of classic
Livingston & Evans songs.
Source: Associated Press
Jim Francis, 1954-2001.
One of the men responsible for the special effects of nearly every major BBC
SF series has died. Visual effects designer Jim Francis worked on shows
such as Doctor Who, Blake's 7, Red Dwarf and the television version of the
late Douglas Adams' Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy. After leaving the BBC,
Francis founded his own special effects company, which will continue to operate
in his absence.
Source: Outpost Gallifrey
Star Trek: The Motion Picture
The feature-loaded double-disc DVD Director's Edition of Star Trek: The Motion Picture
arrives in just two weeks! The first ever fully-decked-out Star Trek DVD
release from Paramount features audio commentary from director Robert Wise,
special effects gurus Doug Trumbull and John Dykstra, composer Jerry Goldsmith
and actor Stephen "Decker" Collins, who took time out from 7th Heaven
to offer his memories of the film. The second disc will include three
retrospective documentaries on the movie, its restoration, and its place in Star Trek lore, all of the original theatrical
trailers and TV promos (plus a new trailer just for this re-edited edition),
outtakes, deleted scenes, and even some material on Enterprise. The movie itself has been made over
with new CGI effects in several scenes, and subtly re-edited under the direct
supervision of Wise.
Babylon 5 DVDs already in trouble?
The hopes of Babylon 5 fans for their
favorite series on shiny round things may already be dashed. In a recent
online chat, a Warner Bros. Home Video representative said that no further
Babylon 5 DVDs are in the pipeline until after sales from the release of
the first volume - containing The
Gathering and In The
Beginning - have been evaluated: "If the DVD performance does
not improve upon the VHS performance from a few years back, it will not
continue." (As many U.S. fans have lamented, the Stateside Babylon 5
video releases ceased after the completion of seasons one and five, and only partial completion of
seasons two and four on VHS; U.K. fans have access to
the entire series on tape.) The first - and, if things don't go well,
only Babylon 5 DVD will be released in December. theLogBook.com staff
writer Mark Holtz has already kicked off an online petition to help
show Warner Home Video that fans want the entire series released this
The Gathering / In The Beginning
Sign the Babylon 5 DVD Petition
Strange new worlds?
Extrasolar planets have been discovered before, but a couple of recent
discoveries by astronomers are getting a lot of attention in scientific circles.
Nearly 80 planets orbiting other stars have been identified by astronomers
around the world, who usually detect them by watching the parent stars for an
unusual "wobble" caused by the gravitational tug of large,
Jupiter-sized (or even larger) worlds. Most of these planets have also had
irregular, elliptical orbits - taking them closer to their stars for part of a
given year and further away for the rest of the year - which aren't conducive to
the formation and maintenance of life. But two recently-discovered worlds, also
Jovian-sized, have circular orbits at distances favorable for life. Sorry - no
one's booking flights just yet.
Source: Washington Times
submitted by Jeff Godemann
Herr Doktor (but no Daleks uber alles yet).
Though it's not the first time Doctor Who
mythology has rewritten the history of World War II, Big Finish
Productions' latest Audio Adventure, Colditz, asks the question
"What would happen if the Third Reich got their hands on the Doctor's
TARDIS?" The Doctor in question is Sylvester McCoy, with the redoubtable
Sophie Aldred in tow as Ace. The third installment of Big Finish Productions'
Dalek Empire audio serial was also due
out this month, but has been delayed for a few weeks due to circumstances beyond
their control. The third episode, titled Death To The Daleks!, will
instead bow in early November - which, considering that November 2001 marks the
38th anniversary of Doctor Who, works just as well, and we'll have
ordering links for it as soon as possible. The fourth episode is still
on track for release just before Christmas. In other news, word is starting to
leak from Big Finish about another series of single-disc Doctor Who spinoff
adventures, this time featuring Elisabeth Sladen as Sarah Jane Smith in a series
of earthbound stories without K-9.
Source: Big Finish Productions
NASA chief resigns after nine years.
NASA chief administrator Daniel Goldin has announced his resignation
from the post he first took in 1992. Having overseen the rebuilding of
the post-Challenger space program, Goldin's reign has seen a return to
regular shuttle flights, the construction of the International Space
Station, the joint US/Russian Mir missions, and programs such as the
successful Mars Surveyor mission. Goldin will be assisting in the
search for his replacement. His resignation is effective November 17th.
Source: Associated Press