'The 4400' Reunites DS9 WritersBy Michelle
June 30, 2004 - 11:57 PM
Former Deep Space Nine writer-producer Rene Echevarria has a new science fiction miniseries set to debut on USA Network: The 4400, which will premiere as a two-hour special on Sunday, July 11th at 9 p.m. As previously reported, the centers on 4400 missing and presumed-dead people who unexpectedly return to Earth after long absence, and the government agency created to keep track of them.
"They don't know what happened to them, who or what was responsible, and now they have to pick up the pieces of their lives," Echevarria explained to Sci Fi Wire. "It's equal parts SF and nighttime soap, so there's something for everybody in it."
The cast and crew of the show have talked several times with SciFi.com, which like USA is owned by NBC Universal. Echevarria noted that The 4400 reunites several of his colleagues from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, including executive producer Ira Steven Behr and writer Robert Hewitt Wolfe, who has also worked on the USA series The Dead Zone, which was co-created by former Trek executive producer Michael Piller.
The series was originally developed to run as a weekly series, "and that's still a possibility if audiences respond to the story," said Echevarria, who added that the writers were challenged to put together a six-hour miniseries that offered a satisfying conclusion yet left open the possibility for further installments. Following the premiere, subsequent episodes of The 4400 will air on Sunday nights through August 8th.
"After USA ordered the series I had to step away from the project to shoot a pilot for Fox, but I was really glad that Ira Behr agreed to come in and executive produce the show," Echevarria told Sci Fi Wire in another interview. "Ira brought in Robert Wolfe, who'd also worked on Deep Space Nine with us. They did an amazing job developing the stories and put together a great cast."
The miniseries' actors include Peter Coyote, Joel Gretsch and Jacqueline McKenzie, who told Sci Fi Wire that the script impressed her. "I like stories about the human struggle, and I saw a lot of that in this," noted the Australian actress, who plays biomedical researcher Diana Skouris. "I thought that my character, as drawn, was really at the front of the investigation and would be interacting with these people who had just returned to Earth, having disappeared for a long time...I felt the human stories of these people, the impact of returning to Earth on their lives and on them as people, were really interesting to me."
More information, pictures and the complete schedule is available at the official site for The 4400 at USA Network.