FX to Adapt ‘Star Trek’ Inspired Sci-Fi Novel ‘Redshirts’ to Series

By February 8, 2014

Though we may not be getting a new “Star Trek” series anytime soon, FX is working on giving us the next best thing.

Deadline has word that the cable network is working with Jon Shestack (producer of Air Force One and Dan in Real Life) and Ken Kwapis (“The Office”) and his partner Alexandra Beattie to create a limited series based on Redshirts, the 2013 Hugo Award winning novel by John Scalzi. “Star Trek” fans should already know where this is going, but for everyone else, we’ll explain below.

In the world of “Star Trek” it became a common trend that any crewman sent out on a mission wearing a red Starfleet shirt was likely going to die (and frequently did). This fact has become the butt of many “Star Trek” jokes and references in various films and TV shows. But the concept also inspired this Galaxy Quest-esque story about a starship crew, on a ship not unlike the Enterprise, who realize their fate is unfolding like a television narrative. Here’s the official synopsis:

Ensign Andrew Dahl has just been assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship Intrepid, flagship of the Universal Union since the year 2456. It’s a prestige posting, with the chance to serve on “Away Missions” alongside the starship’s famous senior officers.

Life couldn’t be better…until Andrew begins to realize that 1) every Away Mission involves a lethal confrontation with alien forces, 2) the ship’s senior officers always survive these confrontations, and 3) sadly, at least one low-ranking crew member is invariably killed. Unsurprisingly, the savvier crew members belowdecks avoid Away Missions at all costs.

Then Andrew stumbles on information that transforms his and his colleagues’ understanding of what the starship Intrepid really is…and offers them a crazy, high-risk chance to save their own lives.

This sounds like it could be a really fun series for sci-fi fans all around. The idea of a meta story like this poking fun at “Star Trek” while still existing in a world much like the iconic sci-fi series is the perfect setting for an original new project, and FX is definitely one of the best places it could have ended up. The project is just now coming together though, so stay tuned for more details as they arrive.

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Ethan Anderton
Some of his favorite films include Ghostbusters, The Empire Strikes Back and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, while his favorite TV series include LOST, Mad Men, 30 Rock, Parks & Recreation, Arrested Development and Saturday Night Live.
  • Christopher D Wellborn

    Everyone in it will die! LOL Seriously though, I will watch this – It sounds interesting.

  • Jermaine M Dupuis

    There is no way it’s not about poking fun – Pretty funny concept though. I mean, seriously, you can’t do a “Red Shirt” show without everyone dying…It does against all Star Trek logic. LOL

  • Matt A Banker

    I used to be such a die-hard traditionalists that didn’t want Star Trek touched unless it was going to be as close to the original as possible, but I’ve changed my mind. Just give me everything you can and I’ll decide from there. This seems like it could be a humorous premise – I’ll give it a shot!