In May, filmmaker Kevin Smith revealed that he’s developing a television version of the cult classic MGM film The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension. ComingSoon.net had the chance to catch up with Smith at Fantasia Fest for the Canadian Premiere of Yoga Hosers to talk to him 1-on-1, and he revealed some of his ambitious plans for the Buckaroo Banzai series. Check back this week for our full Kevin Smith interview!
“With ‘Buckaroo Banzai’ we get to tell the whole movie in ten episodes, so you get to expand some things” Smith told us. “We’re gonna take a lot of stuff from Earl Mac Rauch’s brilliant novelization book of ‘Buckaroo Banzai’ that included Hanoi Xan, his arch nemesis, who we want Peter Weller to play. We’ll layer that in, but also moments like… In ‘Buckaroo Banzai they’re all standing around talking about when the aliens came during the night of the ‘War of the Worlds’ broadcast. It’s people trading information, saying it out loud. We’re gonna do a whole episode about that night and them approaching Orson Welles and all that. Moments where you’re like, ‘Wow, that’s a cool concept’ you get to expand and play with a little bit.”
Smith also revealed his wishlist of directors he wants to helm episodes of the Buckaroo Banzai series once it heads into production, a list that includes some genre heavyweights.
“The big fun for me is going to be collecting the team, ’cause I ain’t gonna direct it all,” Smith continued. “I wanna get the people who loved it as much as me, so people like Richard Kelly, Edgar Wright, I’m gonna reach out to Quentin Tarantino, see if they’ll direct an episode. ‘Here’s a chunk of change, a 50-page script, eight days… go make your section. That’d be fun. It also means I won’t take all the heat myself. (laughs) ‘Quentin was here, he didn’t f*ck it up!'”
The original film was released in 1984 and featured an all-star ensemble cast, including John Lithgow, Clancy Brown, Jeff Goldblum, Christopher Lloyd, and of course Peter Weller as the title character, who is described by one of the characters in the film as thinking “he’s Einstein, James Bond and Batman all rolled into one!” A box office bomb at the time of its release, the film has gone on to become a cult favorite with several spin-offs comics and sequel talk coming out over the years.
“(It’s) one of my favorite movies in the world and largely responsible for the weird s‑‑‑ that I make, because that movie was supposed to be one thing but it did it in another way. It just did it very off-center,” Smith said previously. “Basically, you just do the entire movie for season one, and then season two you finally do the sequel we’ve all dreamed about,: Buckaroo Banzai Versus the World Crime League.”
What do you think of Smith’s plans for the Buckaroo Banzai series? Sound off in the comments below!