Moore Talks 'Dragonriders' Cancellation

By Amy
April 5, 2001 - 5:48 PM

Less than a week after word reached the internet that production had halted on Ron Moore's latest project, 'Dragonriders of Pern', the former Deep Space Nine producer himself has spoken to Sci Fi Wire on the reasons for the sudden cancellation.

"It's dead," Moore announced , confirming many fans' worst fears about the fate of the show. "We were supposed to start shooting the day before yesterday [April 2]. We were very, very close. We were shooting in Santa Fe. We had the cast. We had the production team. We had the CGI. We had the whole enchilada, and they pulled the plug last Wednesday."

And the reason? As previously announced, it was creative differences that saw the show fold just as it was starting to get underway. "It was a different show," Moore said about the 'dialogue polishing' the WB had ordered for the new pilot's script. "I had tried ... to keep the spirit of the books alive ... and make it a classy, interesting show. And ... what was evident in the draft they commissioned, they wanted a different show. It was more Buffy-esque and Xena-esque. It was something they felt more comfortable with on The WB. ... There wasn't a way to split the difference. Ultimately, they decided we should just let the project go. It was their decision. It was very disappointing for everybody. ... A lot of people put a lot of hard work into it."

This far into pre production, a number of sets have been constructed that fans are now not likely ever to see - Ruatha Hold, for example or Bendan Weyr, described as "a series of pueblo-like cliff dwellings". But Moore believes that it would be better to have no series than one he felt didn't live up to the books. "... I had a responsibility to the material and the source of the material. ... And I think the fans - while they may be disappointed that the series won't go forward - would have been more disappointed if we had made a series that contradicted the world that Anne had created and was so wonderful."

As to the human crew side, Moore commented with disappointment that "We ... had to shutter the offices, let the crew go, and it was too bad. But ultimately, I understand and respect the position of the network, because it's their network."

With the second attempt in recent years failing to truly get off the ground once more, it's not likely that we'll be seeing another attempt at Pern any time in the near future - if indeed at all ever again. Moore himself, at the moment at least, is not likely to spearhead the next attempt, if it comes. "The thought of doing it all over again is not something I'm eager to do at this moment," he says, though he adds in conclusion that "But maybe with a little time and distance, you never know."

More information on the cancellation of the Dragonriders pilot can be found by following the link to this Sci Fi Wire article.

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