By Curt Wagner
4:54 PM CDT, May 16, 2011
Dinosaurs, Steven Spielberg and Jason O'Mara in a starring role? Even if this new drama fails in its writing, I'm on board this fall. Fox has had "Terra Nova" in the works for some time, and although many may see that as problematic--it just wasn't working, perhaps--I think the producers, including Spielberg, Peter Chernin, Rene Echevarria and Brannon Braga wanted to get it all right. Besides, you try to put together so many visual effects quickly.
O'Mara plays Jim Shannon, who with his family travles back in time to prehistoric Earth in order to save the planet in 2149, when it is dying. Things don't always go smoothly with the dinos, I'm guessing. Read Fox's full description and watch the clip here.
7 p.m. Mondays
From executive producers Steven Spielberg ("Saving Private Ryan," "Jurassic Park"), Peter Chernin, Rene Echevarria ("Castle," "The 4400") and Brannon Braga ("24") comes an epic family adventure 85 million years in the making. "Terra Nova" follows an ordinary family on an incredible journey back in time to prehistoric Earth as a small part of a daring experiment to save the human race. In the year 2149, the world is dying. The planet is overdeveloped and overcrowded, with the majority of plant and animal life extinct. The future of mankind is in jeopardy, and its only hope for survival is in the distant past. When scientists at the FERMI Particle Accelerator unexpectedly discovered a fracture in time that made it possible to construct a portal into primeval history, the bold notion was born to resettle humanity in the past--a second chance to rebuild civilization and get it right this time. The series centers on the Shannon family as they join the Tenth Pilgrimage of settlers to Terra Nova, the first colony established in this beautiful yet foreboding land. JIM SHANNON (Jason O'Mara, "Life on Mars"), a devoted father with a checkered past, guides his family through this new world of limitless beauty, mystery and terror. Jim's wife, ELISABETH (Shelley Conn, "Mistresses"), is a trauma surgeon and the newest addition to Terra Nova's medical team. JOSH (Landon Liboiron, "Degrassi: The Next Generation") is their 17-year-old son who is angry to leave life as he knows it behind; upon arriving at the settlement, he finds himself instantly drawn to the beautiful and rule-breaking SKYE (Allison Miller, "Kings"). MADDY (Naomi Scott, "Life Bites"), Josh's endearingly awkward 15-year-old sister, hopes Terra Nova will give her a chance to reinvent herself. Although Elisabeth's medical training secured the family a spot on the pilgrimage, a secret involving their five-year-old daughter, ZOE (newcomer Alana Mansour), soon endangers their place in this utopia. Upon the Shannons' arrival, they are introduced to COMMANDER NATHANIEL TAYLOR (Stephen Lang, "Avatar"), the charismatic and heroic first pioneer and leader of the settlement. Taylor warns the travelers that while Terra Nova is a place of new opportunities and fresh beginnings, all is not as idyllic as it initially appears. Along with blue skies, towering waterfalls and lush vegetation, the surrounding terrain is teeming with danger--and not just of the man-eating dinosaur variety. There is also a splinter colony of renegades led by the battle-hardened MIRA (Christine Adams, "TRON: Legacy"), who is vehemently opposed to Taylor and his leadership. Even more threatening than what lies outside the protective walls of the colony is the chilling possibility that something sinister is happening inside Terra Nova. The Shannons will come to suspect that not everyone on this mission has the same idea of how to best save mankind; in fact, there may be forces intent on destroying this new world before it even begins.
PRODUCTION COMPANIES: 20th Century Fox Television, Chernin Entertainment, DreamWorks Television, Kapital Entertainment
EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Steven Spielberg, Peter Chernin, Rene Echevarria, Brannon Braga, Alex Graves (pilot), Jon Cassar, Aaron Kaplan, Katherine Pope, Justin Falvey, Darryl Frank, Craig Silverstein, Kelly Marcel
DIRECTOR: Alex Graves
CAST: Jason O'Mara as Jim Shannon, Stephen Lang as Nathaniel Taylor, Shelley Conn as Elisabeth Shannon, Landon Liboiron as Josh Shannon, Naomi Scott as Maddy Shannon, Alana Mansour as Zoe Shannon, Christine Adams as Mira, Allison Miller as Skye
Copyright © 2013 Chicago Tribune Company, LLC