The Twilight Zone at The Almeida
Theatre

The Almeida’s production of The Twilight Zone now has photos and a teaser video

Remember that production of The Twilight Zone coming to The Almeida theatre in December? Well, things are proceeding apace, it seems. We have some rehearsal photographs, such as this:

Behind the scenes of The Twilight Zone

(Bonus points if you can work out what episodes they’re adapting, purely from the photographs)

There’s a YouTube teaser video:

And director Tom Brennan has written an article about the difficulties of adapting episodes of an old US TV show for the stage:

So the TV show was like a kind of theatre, and in turn the theatre show is based on TV. It’s a strange transference of forms. There are certainly many questions that arise when thinking about the legacy of the show and its new manifestation on stage.

How do you do a pre-commercial break cliff-hanger onstage?
How do you create a high-concept perspective twist with no camera?
What is the best form for building tension?
What is the best form for creating a sense of the paranoid, the mysterious, the genuinely strange?

Forgive him for not knowing that The Twilight Zone wasn’t ‘the original anthology show’, mind.

I’m going to see it in December. How about you?

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The Twilight Zone
Theatre

The Almeida theatre enters The Twilight Zone this December

Well colour me surprised – the Almeida Theatre in north London is putting on some adaptations of classic episodes of The Twilight Zone from this December. I wonder who’ll play Rod Serling?

Between light and shadow, science and superstition, fear and knowledge is a dimension of imagination. An area which we call the Twilight Zone.

Adapted by Anne Washburn (Mr Burns) and directed by Olivier Award-winner Richard Jones, this world premiere production of the acclaimed CBS Television Series The Twilight Zone lands on stage for the first time in its history. Or its present. Or its future.

Stage magic and fantasy unite as the ordinary becomes extraordinary.

The stories chosen are by Rod Serling, Charles Beaumont and Richard Matheson, so that should narrow things down – but only a little bit.

The production runs from 5th December 2017 to 27th January 2018, with a post-show discussion with members of the company on 11th January. Tickets cost £10-£48 and available here to the public from July 27.

News: Castle purges; Scott & Bailey to end; interactive Twilight Zone; Marley’s Ghosts renewed; + more

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Thursday’s “New, new, new Twilight Zone, Roger Corman’s new movies and more new Psych” news

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  • Roger Corman to remake eight Edgar Allan Poe stories
  • Fox adapting Top Cow’s Theory of Everything

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  • New trailer for The Great Gatsby
  • Trailer for Michael Bay’s Pain & Gain, with Mark Wahlberg and The Rock
  • Trailer for Terrence Malick’s To The Wonder, with Ben Affleck, Rachel McAdams and Javier Bardem
  • New trailer for The Heat, with Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy

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The Wednesday Play: The New Twilight Zone – A Small Talent For War (1985)

Plays can come in all shapes and sizes. They can be several hours, sometimes even days, or in the case of the new Twilight Zone episode A Small Talent For War, they can be as short as eight minutes.

As remarked previously, Rod Serling’s original Twilight Zone turned in some of the finest works of short drama ever to grace US TV screens. With a revival of Alfred Hitchcock Presents proving popular in the 1980s and a Twilight Zone movie doing reasonably well at the cinema, too, so The Twilight Zone was resurrected for three seasons of largely original scripts between 1985 and 1989. These included contributions from Harlan Ellison, Ray Bradbury, Arthur C Clarke, Stephen King, George RR Martin, David Gerrold, J Michael Straczynski, Rockne S O’Bannon and others, with directors Wes Craven, William Friedkin and Joe Dante all getting a turn behind the camea, too.

One of the revival’s most novel features – for the first two seasons, at least – was to forego the mandatory half-hour or hour-long episode length, with many episodes airing in tandem or triplets with others to make up the full run-time. While it never quite reached the heights of the original, one of the new series’ very finest short pieces was A Small Talent For War, starring John Glover (Brimstone and Smallville) as an alien who delivers an ultimatum to the world. It’s a lean piece of brilliance, entertaining, funny, chilling and in its own way profound. Enjoy!