• B5: The Lost Tales
• The Changeling
• King David
• World War Z
• Silver Surfer Movie
• They Marched into Sunlight
• Borrowed Lives
• SF Series
• B5 Novels
• Second Created Series
• Masters of Science Fiction
• Polaris
• Worlds War II Screenplay
• Midnight Nation Film
• Dream Police Film
• Delicate Creatures
• Babylon 5 Graphic Novel
• Darkness Between the Stars
• Babylon 5 Quote Book
• Distant Stars
• Book Reprints
• The World on Fire
• B5 DVD Game
• Apocalypse Al
• City of Dreams
• Mainstream Novel
• Among the Ruins

Straczynski Project Watch

The Current Status of Each of JMS's Ongoing Projects

J. Michael Straczynski, Babylon 5's creator, has many other projects that are worthy of investigation. In fact, he is a serious workaholic. He is like a skilled juggler keeping all of the projects in the air at the same time.

This page keeps tabs on the current status of each of his ongoing projects. As each project is completed, it will be retired from this page.

Projects with Dedicate Pages

The following current ongoing projects have individual dedicated pages at Worlds of JMS.

The Babylon 5 Scripts of J. Michael Straczynski

Rising Stars Feature Film

Babylon 5: The Lost Tales

(Updated 24 April 2007)

Warner Bros. will be producing new Babylon 5 programs. The title is Babylon 5: The Lost Tales. There will be individual, self-contained stories, some from notes that Straczynski recently rediscovered. The format will be short films of 40 - 45 minutes. They will be distributed direct to DVD with two episodes and some supplementary material appearing on the first disc to bring the total running time to two hours per disc. A network is interested in airing them also. Straczynski will write, direct, and have complete creative control.

The DVD with the first two stories will be titled "Voices in the Dark". Straczynski originally wrote three scripts for this DVD (of 25 - 30 minutes each) focusing on Sheridan, Lochley, Galen, and Garibaldi. However, as preproduction began, Straczynski decided that the he had set too much on his plate for a new director. The more challenging Garibaldi story has been put off to a (hopeful) second DVD, and the other two stories will be expanded so that the total running time remains the same. The production offices in Vancouver officially opened on 23 October 2006. Filming began on 14 November 2006, and the shows was shot in high definition with digital cameras.

Straczynski notes that his scripts for this show, which he will eventually publish, are far more detailed than his Babylon 5 scripts, essentially incorporating his directorial notes.

The three episodes will visit Mars, Minbar, Babylon 5, Earth (where Straczynski promises a "rather startling sequence"), the future, and the distant past. The shows will introduce a new kind of Minbari cruiser. It is unknown which venues are unique to the postponed Garibaldi story. Straczynski will shoot each segment a little differently so that each episode is complimented by its own unique visual style. There will be some pivotal scenes that cross the two episodes on the disc. The CGI effects will be re-imagined to make use of modern technology.

Straczynski's cut (without CGI) was turned in to the studio on 08 December 2006. Atmosphere (the effects house for Battlestar Galactica) provided the CGI, and Chris Franke provided the music. The final DVD has been delivered to Warner Bros. as of mid-April 2007.

Video blogs from Straczynski recorded during production will begin to appear online shortly.

The first DVD will be released on 31 July 2007.

The Changeling

(Updated 19 March 2008)

Universal Pictures and Imagine Entertainment have purchased J. Michael Straczynski's thriller The Changeling. Ron Howard will produce the film, and Clint Eastwood will direct it. Angelina Jolie stars as a mother who prays for the return of her kidnapped son. When her prayers are answered, however, she begins to suspect the boy who comes back is not her child. John Malkovich also stars. Ron Howard's selection of this script catapulted Straczynski to the A-List of Hollywood Writers. Straczynski submitted his final draft of the script by the first week of September 2006. Filming was completed in December 2007. It should be released in 2008.

King David

(Updated 21 December 2006)

Straczynski has written a big-budget historical action film based on the life of King David for Universal. He suggests thinking along the lines of Braveheart or Gladiator. Akiva Goldsman is involved as one of the producers. Straczynski has completed this screenplay.

World War Z

(Updated 19 March 2008)

Straczynski adapted the novel World War Z as a big-budget film for Paramount and Brad Pitt's Plan B Productions. Straczynski's first draft of the script was met with very positive reaction. The latest draft was turned in mid-August 2007, and it has been sent out to directors, to whom the studio is currently making offors. They are still searching for an A-list director.

Silver Surfer Movie

(Updated 19 March 2008)

Straczynski has written the script for a feature film starring the Silver Surfer. He turned in the final draft before the beginning of the writers' strike. The film is being fast-tracked and is expected to be released in 2008.

They Marched into Sunlight

(Updated 19 March 2008)

Straczynski wrote the screenplay for They Marched into Sunlight from an outline by Paul Greengrass. Greengrass will direct. The story is based on based on the historical novel by Pulitizer Prize-winning author, David Maraniss. It focuses on the effect that two events - the loss of 61 American soldiers in a Viet Cong ambush and a student protest against Dow Chemical - had on the opposition to the Vietnam War on college campuses. It is being produced by Tom Hanks' company. Straczynski delivered the script before the beginning of the writers' strike.

Borrowed Lives

(Updated 21 December 2006)

Straczynski has created a new network television series called Borrowed Lives which is currently in development. It is a mainstream show, not in the science fiction or fantasy genres.

The series has been purchased for development by Disney's Touchstone Television. The pilot script was very well received by Touchstone, and it was sent to the network the week of 04 December 2006.

SF Series

(Updated 19 March 2008)

Straczynski is working with two film makers on a new science fiction television series. Straczynski won't reveal his collaborators' names, but he says that they have created some of the biggest SF movies in the last twenty years and that any three of their movies added together have a box office gross of over two billion dollars. They have created the show and written the first three scripts. Straczynski says that the show will revolutionize the form. The project went to the networks for auction in September 2007. A sizeable offer would be required to fund this ambitious project. Many were interested in the project but were hesitant because it could be considered controversial and weird. An apparently firm proposed offer was derailed by the start of the writers' strike.

Straczynski and the other two creators decided to finance the project themselves, beginning with a ten-hour miniseries. By doing this they will protect themselves from being forced to compromise on any creative issues.

Babylon 5 Novels

(21 December 2006)

Mongoose Publishing has secured the rights to release new Babylon 5 novels. A disagreement erupted when they began falsely publicizing Straczynski's involvement. After several exchanges, Straczynski decided to give Mongoose a second chance in order to ensure through his involvement the quality of Babylon 5 products being offered to fans. However, when the first manuscripts were delivered to him, Straczynski judged them to be amateurish and unprofessional. Therefore he has severed his relationship with these novels and will not endorse them.

Second Created Series

(11 April 2006)

Straczynski has been approached by a major director (one of the biggest in town) who wants to go in and pitch one of Straczynski's projects at the networks for a series.

Masters of Science Fiction

(Updated 11 August 2006)

Straczynski wrote one of the first scripts to be produced for ABC's Masters of Science Fiction series. The series features stories by "big name" authors adapted for the screen by "big name" writers. "Watchbird" was adapted from Robert Sheckley's story. However, by the time production began, the script had been rewritten to extent that Straczynski removed his writing credit, saying that the final draft was more properly credited to Sam Egan.

Straczynski had originally agreed to be the show-runner. However, delays in the negotiations between the producers and ABC pushed production so late that it conflicts with Borrowed Lives, so he had to decline.


(Updated 01 April 2003)

J. Michael Straczynski developed a series for the Sci-Fi Channel called Polaris.

This project began life in February 2001. Work on it was postponed until late June 2001 due to Straczynski's heavy workload. The contracts were finally signed in early September 2001. Straczynski turned in at least two scripts including one for a two-hour pilot.

Polaris made it to the final three candidates to be picked up by the Sci-Fi Channel. Unfortunately, Straczynski announced in January 2003 that Polaris was turned down for being "too science fictiony". After the turnaround period has expired, Straczynski plans to take the project elsewhere. On 01 April 2003, Straczynski said that another studio might be showing strong interest in Polaris.

Straczynski says, "I've kept the basic story line of Polaris under lock and key because it's the kind of thing which, once you hear it, you know instantly why the Sci-Fi Channel picked it up to develop, even though it's a fairly pristine area inside the genre, and I'm trying to keep competition to a minimum for now."

World War II Screenplay

(Updated 11 April 2006)

Straczynski has completed an original screenplay based on a true, mainstream story set during World War II. It is generating serious interest and name people are becoming attached to it.

Midnight Nation Film

(Updated 26 July 2006)

Joe Straczynski owns the film and television rights to Midnight Nation. It is currently available, and Straczynski might eventually spec it out himself.

As of July 2006 two different film studios are in negotiations to secure the film rights.

Dream Police Film

(Updated 26 July 2006)

Dream Police is now in development with a film studio, not one of those interested in Midnight Nation or Rising Stars. Straczynski has turned in a detailed outline for the feature. The studio is now looking to pair up the material with the right director so they can take it out formally to the film marketplace. They are negotiating with Straczynski to write the script.

Delicate Creatures

(Updated 16 January 2002)

Delicate Creatures is a hardcover graphic novel that Straczynski describes as "a fantasy book with teeth". Each two-page spread of this prose and poetry story features elaborate artwork by Michael Zulli and colored by Steve Firchow.

This book is published by Top Cow. It was released on 16 January 2002 with a cover price of $16.95. The initial print run is limited to 16,000 copies.

Babylon 5 Graphic Novel

(Updated 17 May 2006)

Straczynski is writing a standalone Babylon 5 graphic novel for the Wildstorm division of DC Comics.

Straczynski originally planned to write a story that takes place before "War Without End" featuring both Sinclair and Sheridan and involving Mars, Minbar, Babylon 5, and a conspiracy. However, he later considered the option of writing a story that ties Babylon 5, Crusade, and Legend of the Rangers together. Regardless of the plot, Straczynski promises that it will be something that the fans want to see and that it will be something that works best in the graphic novel medium instead of on television.

The book will be about 100 pages long and will probably be released in hardcover. The artist has not been selected yet.

Since this book was already under contract, it is not prohibited by Straczynski's exclusive deal with Marvel Comics.

In December 2005 Straczynski reported that the script was half complete. In May 2006, he reported that the graphic novel is still going ahead "in starts and fits."

The Darkness Between the Stars

(06 March 2005)

Straczynski recently wrote a science fiction / horror short story entitled "The Darkness Between the Stars." It will appear in Book of Dark Wisdom, an SF/horror magazine. It should appear in either Issue 6 or 7.

Babylon 5 Quote Book

(Updated 25 October 2005)

Joe Straczynski has been preparing a new book titled But In Purple I'm Stunning: Quotations from Babylon 5. This volume includes fan choices for favorite quotes along with anecdotes about what those quotes mean to the fans. It was intended to be published under Byron Preiss' ibooks imprint at Simon and Shuster. However, since Preiss' untimely death, Straczynski has pulled the book from that publisher. He is considering releasing it through the same venue as the Babylon 5 script books.

J. Michael Straczynski's Distant Stars

(Updated 27 January 2005)

Simon & Schuster is publishing a shared universe series called J. Michael Straczynski's Distant Stars. Straczynski created the Distant Stars universe. Other writers and novelists have been invited to create novels in this universe to be published under Simon & Schuster's banner. Unfortunately, Straczynski may not have time to write any contributions himself. The writer for the first novel has been selected.

Book Reprints

(Updated 21 June 2004)

Joe Straczynski signed a deal with iBooks/Simon and Schuster to republish all of his prior works of fiction, making them available both online and in major bookstores. This includes the novels Demon Night, OtherSyde, and Tribulations and a collection of Straczynski's short stories entitled Straczynski Unplugged. This volume includes include a number of Straczynski's Twilight Zone stories, other previously published stories such as "Say Hello, Mister Quigley," "Cold Type," "We Killed Them in the Ratings," and "The Salvation of Lyman Terrell." Demon Night and Straczynski Unplugged are now available. Othersyde is due in September 2004. and Tribulations is due in December.

The World on Fire

(Updated 01 June 2004)

Joe Straczynski and Chris Carter (The X-Files) were developing a Straczynski idea called The World on Fire. The complex negotiations required the participation of several parties. At the very last minute, Fox backed out of the deal. Carter's most recent project, Harsh Realm was cancelled, and Fox blamed this on the fact that Carter had developed it from someone else's idea. Fox wanted Carter's next project to be 100% his.

Straczynski is no longer marketing The World on Fire as a series. The story was about America's next war that begins with an attack on New York City. With the events of September 11, 2001, the real world has already overtaken Straczynski's fiction.

B5 DVD Game

(30 December 2005)

WB has begun making inquiries to Straczynski about doing a Babylon 5 DVD trivia game, but it's still very much in the preliminary discussions stage. It would mainly utilize existing footage from the series and TV movies.

B5 on AOL

(30 December 2005)

Straczynski has been quietly working with Warner Bros. on the distribution of Babylon 5 material on AOL and wireless phones. He has consulted on the editing down of various parts into differenty-sized bites. Customers can select "make me laugh" and "thrill me" segments (the elevator scene in "Convictions" being one, and a big Narn/Shadow fight for the latter) of 3 to 4 minutes, "Tell me a story" which is 12 minutes long on average, being an a- or b-story pulled out on its own, and of course "show me an episode."

The AOL premiere should be in January 2006.

The Adventures of Apocalypse Al

(Updated 04 October 2007)

Straczynski wrote an audio drama called The Adventures of Apocalypse Al. It was produced as short five-minute episodes, and there are either 12 or 20 episodes. It's comedy / action, very noir, with a supernatural bent. Straczynski describes it as, "Monty Python Meets The Maltese Falcon En Route To the End of the World". The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation produced it, and Straczynski participated in Toronto. The show is complete, and it will be broadcast in Canada and, like all CBC productions, it will be syndicated worldwide, to the Sirius Satellite Radio, NPR, BBC, and elsewhere, as well as released on CD eventually. The program has not aired yet due to the difficulty of scheduling twenty five-minute episodes in the same time slot on four consecutive weeks.

In late September 2007, Straczynski stated that "another production entity has stepped in to pick up Apocalypse Al."

City of Dreams

(Updated 29 April 2002)

City of Dreams was supposed to be a 13-episode audio drama anthology series, but only eight episodes were released. Straczynski wrote it for SCIFI.COM's Seeing Ear Theatre. Anyone with a RealAudio player can listen to it for free.

The last episode was "The Alpha and Omega of David Wells", released on 1 February 2000. There are annotated links to the episodes on the City of Dreams web site.

JMS turned in the scripts for three additional episodes, including one titled "Dream Police". Unfortunately, the Sci-Fi Channel pulled its financing for most of its audio dramas.

Mainstream Novel

(Updated 26 October 2006)

Joe Straczynski was working on a new novel that he describes as "more of a mainstream book". He is about half-way through as of early September 2001 with over 200 pages written. Straczynski spends much more time crafting the words of a novel than he spends on a script. He rewrote the first 100 pages 20 times. Unfortunately, the events of his novel were very similar to those that came to pass on September 11, 2001. Therefore he has discontinued work on this book.

Straczynski's computer suffered a fatal hard drive crash in October 2006, and he may have lost much of his work on this novel.

Among the Ruins

(Updated 19 March 2008)

Joe Straczynski has been working on a medieval play titled Among the Ruins for quite some time. He placed it on the back burner in July 2003, but in June 2004 he reported that he had made substantial progress. In December 2008 he stated that the play is about three-fourths done and has been that way for over a year. He isn't sure if it is as good as he thinks it might be, so he is considering hiring some actors, geting a small space, and holding a staged reading of what's there to see how it sounds.