What Netflixs Lost In Space Takes And Changes From The 1960s Original

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Its perfect timing, said Ignacio Serricchio, who plays Don West. The values, and reminding people about family values, and reminding people that its so much easier, and it takes less time and less energy, to focus on what you have in common with people. Dont focus on what you dont.

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Estrin said as a kid he watched the original and fantasized about being Will Robinson, having space adventures with his robot buddy. You want to be Will Robinson. Thats like, a thing, he said. But I find myself now, older, connecting to different characters in different ways.

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We wanted to say, Bring it back to what it started as before CBS turned it into a childrens show, Burns continued. Bring it back to what it was intended to be: an action-adventure space drama with a family in peril, but a family who loved each other. And thats what this is.

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I would only add something else, Burns interjected, which is, Jons being too modest. Jon was the President of Legendary, and Jon is an expert at re-realizing iconic characters.

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That is, unless they watched the 1998 movie, which nobody so much as mentioned during these interviews. Clearly, the original 1960s show is the main subject being reinterpreted here. Jon Jashni, another of the new shows executive producers, even compared his fellow producer Kevin Burns to the original shows creator, Irwin Allen.

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The core of the original show is what we wanted to hold on to, which was the family stuff,Lost in Spaces showrunner, Zack Estrin, said during roundtable interviews at WonderCon last month.

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One character who hasnt changed in essence is Will Robinson, the youngest member of the family, played in the new show by Max Jenkins, a former circus performer who retired from the ring to take up acting around the age of 10.

When we met with [the writers] for the first time, I said, It depends on whichLost in Spaceyou want to make, because theres three of them. First season is very serious–its much more action adventure, he said. But then when it went to color in the second season and it was on oppositeBatman, it became a comedy show…They tried to bring it back to family by Season 3 but by then it was too late. It really became The Will, Smith, and Robot Show, which was beloved, but it wasnt what I remember grabbed me as a 12-year-old kid.

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It was so ahead of its time, he said. It was so long ago. Thats two generations that had no idea what it was.

One of the characters whos changed the most is Dr. Smith. Jonathan Harriss original incarnation of the character went through transformations of his own, but Parker Poseys Dr. Smith on the Netflix show has a very different origin. Shes introduced at the end of the first episode, but we wont find out how she got there until later.

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I watched the first season of the show, and I also got to meet [original Will Robinson actor] Bill Mumy, and were good friends now, which Im proud to say, Jenkins said. When we were filmingLost in Spaceyou could feel the presence of the old show…I feel like it brings in the qualities of the old show, while also bringing in a new way…its a modern version of it.

Im a performer, performing an homage to a show–to a part–that I loved as a kid, Posey said. I have to recommend the volumes one, two, and three of theLost in Spacebooks. Theyre pretty great. And the box set is pretty great. Just to see, you know, the promise that it had in a relatively short amount of time…what it was like then and compared to what its like now. It feels like good timing, which I think is part of the appeal of this show.

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The originalLost in Space, which first aired between 1965 and 1968, is a classic of sci-fi television. Its no small feat to adapt it for modern audiences on Netflix, even without considering the polarizing 1998 movie version. But the shows creators know exactly what they want to retain–and what they want to change–from the originalLost in Space.

If theres anyone who has inherited Irwins mantle, its [Kevin], Jashni said. But what we both saw as the opportunity was to take todays technology, the resources of a platform like Netflix …and the ability to build what is in effect a ten hour, hundred-million-dollar movie where the arc can be carefully plotted and built over time.

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Lost in Spacefollows the Robinson family–a name borrowed from the classic Swiss Family Robinson story–as they become stranded on an alien planet while en route from Earth to a distant colony. In the shows first episode, Will Robinson, the youngest of three, befriends a strange robot who helps the family throughout the series. Theres a lot in the new show thats different from the original, and the robots origin is just one of many iconic characters and story beats the Netflix show interprets in a new way.

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Mike Rougeau is GameSpots Senior Entertainment Editor. He loves Game of Thrones and dogs.

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A lot of people watched the show when they were kids for the cool sci-fi, the jetpacks, the ships, but there were also a lot of people who watched it because they wanted to be part of the Robinson family. So for us that was a great way to capture new viewers and old viewers–to hold on to that core values of what the Robinsons were about.

Besides, the original show didnt exactly have a consistent tone or style. It went through multiple significant changes, even though it only lasted three seasons, according to one of the new shows executive producers, Kevin Burns.

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