Terra Nova panel at Comic-Con
Fans who packed Ballroom 20 at Comic-Con Saturday got to see the full pilot for Terra Nova, a high-concept time-traveling drama that’ll bow Sept. 26 on Fox. After several reshoots to provide more exposition for any confused folks at home, the pilot more than adequately explained how the Shannon family of five — helmed by Jason O’Mara (Life on Mars) — travels back in a time through a high-tech portal to a prehistoric era with dinosaurs. And, yep, there will be a lot of them. “It’s dinosaur show. You will see dinosaurs,” says Executive Producer Jose Molina. “We are expensive show. You will see the money on the screen. It’s going to look badass.”
Added the show’s special effects guru Kevin Blank, “Doing dinosaurs on a TV schedule is a challenge and we are getting better as we go. They will only be better going forward.”
In fact, one fan astutely asked if the audience will see more people eaten by gigantic creatures (the pilot shot in Australia shows a man gobbled up by one during a chase scene). “Of course we like to kill people,” says Molina. “We like to see slashers. Yeah, you are going to see some pretty cool dino-on-man action.”
Added star Stephen Lang, the only star who participated in the panel, “Considering the reaction we got (from the pilot screening), I think there will be a mandate from the network for one eating a week.” Lang plays Taylor, the lead security dude who lords over the prehistoric colony.
As for the series, the storytelling will ricochet back and forth from the depressing future — where the Shannons and other families travel from — to the prehistoric past, where everyone is settling into a new life with plenty of oxygen and tropical vistas. There are so-called bad guys in the past called Sixers, who give Taylor and his team a run for his money. But how bad are they?
Sadly, Steven Spielberg — one of the drama’s many, many executive producers — did not show up at the panel, even though he’s in San Diego for Comic-Con. Terra Nova will debut with a two-hour episode.