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BYUtv taps anti-gay Orson Scott Card to create, write, produce its new scripted series

Published September 15, 2016 10:47 am
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In the midst of battling charges that Brigham Young University is anti-gay, BYUtv has announced that its new scripted series was co-created and will be written and executive produced by virulently anti-gay science fiction author Orson Scott Card.

Card and author Aaron Johnston are the co-creators of "Extinct," a 10-episode drama set 400 years in the future when aliens revive a small band of humans.

Summit Pictures, which produced the 2013 film "Ender's Game" — based on one of Card's novels — removed him from doing publicity for the film because it feared he would produce only bad publicity because of his anti-gay marriage, anti-gay views. DC Comics canceled plans for a new Superman comic authored by Card for the same reason.



Salon.com wrote of Card's "long history of homophobia," calling him "one of the most critically acclaimed writers of science fiction [and] also one of the most openly bigoted.... Card has been openly railing against what he calls 'the homosexual agenda' for decades."

In 2008, Card wrote in the Deseret News: "Regardless of law, marriage has only one definition, and any government that attempts to change it is my mortal enemy. I will act to destroy that government and bring it down."

In 1990, he penned a piece titled "The Hypocrites of Homosexuality" for Sunstone magazine, writing, "Laws against homosexual behavior should remain on the books, not to be indiscriminately enforced against anyone who happens to be caught violating them, but to be used when necessary to send a clear message that those who flagrantly violate society's regulation of sexual behavior cannot be permitted to remain as acceptable, equal citizens within that society."

He later modified that, writing that in the wake of the Supreme Court decision legalizing gay marriage, "I have no interest in criminalizing homosexual acts and would never call for such a thing, any more than I wanted such laws enforced back when they were still on the books." He has also claimed that he was the victim of persecution for his views.

This is who will be producing the new flagship series for BYUtv — the series that will, to some degree, replace "Granite Flats."

Here's BYUtv's release about the show show:

BYUtv Creates Second Original Scripted Drama Show, Extinct

Sci-Fi Series Written Exclusively for BYUtv by Bestselling Authors Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston

Sept. 13, 2016, Provo, Utah – BYUtv today announced the launch of its second original scripted drama series, "Extinct," which will premiere in 2017. Created by "Ender's Game" author and science-fiction legend Orson Scott Card and New York Times bestselling author Aaron Johnston, "Extinct" will be a co-production of Taleswapper and Go Films, Adam Abel ("Forever Strong," "Freetown") producing and Ryan Little ("Saints and Soldiers," "Outlaw Trail") directing. Chad Michael Collins ("Sniper") is set to star.

The 10-episode, action-packed sci-fi series takes place 400 years after the extinction of the human race and follows a small group of humans who are revived by an alien civilization. The aliens claim they want to restore the human species, but the reborn humans uncover new dangers, hidden agendas and powerful secrets that challenge that claim and threaten to annihilate the human race all over again.

"We are pleased to debut a sci-fi thriller created exclusively for BYUtv by one of the most awarded and bestselling authors – Orson Scott Card," said Derek Marquis, managing director of BYUtv. "Following the incredible response to our first scripted drama, 'Granite Flats,' we are bringing a powerful apocalyptic story to life, written by two of the strongest writers in the world of speculative fiction, and directed and produced by top independent filmmakers."

"Extinct" carries the colony of revived humans through struggles with the aliens who extinguished humankind centuries before — while trying to understand and get along with the mysterious aliens who revived them. Nothing is as it seems to be, and if they aren't careful, courageous, and unified, they'll find themselves under the control of one group or the other.

Orson Scott Card is the author of the novels "Ender's Game" and its sequels, "Speaker for the Dead" and "Ender's Shadow." Two of these books, "Ender's Game" and "Speaker for the Dead," have been awarded both the Hugo and the Nebula Awards for Best Novel. "Ender's Game" was No. 1 on the New York Times' Best Sellers List of Paperback Mass-Market Fiction for eight weeks in 2013. The book has been recommended reading for U.S. Military personnel and was the basis for the science fiction action film "Ender's Game," which Card co-produced, and stared Asa Butterfield along with Harrison Ford, Viola Davis and Ben Kingsley. Card is currently the professor of writing and literature at Southern Virginia University.

Aaron Johnston is a co-creator of Extinct, along with Orson Scott Card, and wrote the pilot episode. He is a New York Times bestselling author, comics writer and film producer. He co-wrote the novels "Earth Unaware," "Earth Afire," "Earth Awakens," "The Swarm," "Invasive Procedures," and the other forthcoming Formic Wars novels. He was also an associate producer on the movie "Ender's Game."

Actor Chad Michael Collins has been cast as the lead character, Ezra, and is best known for his work in the feature film "Sniper" series ("Sniper: Reloaded," "Legacy" and "Ghost Shooter"). He has also appeared in films and TV shows including "Room 33," "Lake Placid 2," "CSI: Miami," "New Orleans" and "New York", "NCIS," "Once Upon a Time," "2 Broke Girls," "Major Crimes," "90210" and "Last Resort." Collins is slated to star in the upcoming feature film, "Howlers," alongside Sean Patrick Flanery, and new TV show, "Freakish."

Other cast members include Victoria Atkin, Variety magazine's 2015 'International Star You Should Know' ("Assassin's Creed: Syndicate"), Jaclyn Hales ("Unicorn City"), Yorke Fryer ("How to Get Away with Murder"), Jack Depew ("Mad Men," "The Fosters") Matthew Bellows ("Grimm," "Fuller House") and Jake Stormoen ("Mythica").

Director Ryan Little, is a Canadian-born cinematographer who along with producing partner Adam Abel has won 16 Best Picture awards on the film festival circuit, including two nominations for the Independent Spirit awards. Some of his films include "Saints and Soldiers," "Saints and Soldiers: Airborne Creed" and "Saints and Soldiers: The Void" and "Forever Strong." In 2013, Little also directed two episodes of BYUtv's first original scripted drama series, "Granite Flats."

Producer Adam Abel started his career at Paramount Pictures before founding Go Films in 2002 with Ryan Little. In 2016, he produced the documentary film, "The Journey Home," which chronicled the experiences of Vietnam veterans as they returned home from the war and featured interviews with actor Jon Voight, and Medal of Honor Recipient Sammy Davis, amongst others. Abel worked with BYUtv in 2015 as a producer on "Joan of Arc."

 

 

 

 

 

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