'Galactica' Prequel on Tap at Sci Fi

The Sci Fi Channel will delve into the backstory of "Battlestar Galactica" with a new series that looks at the years leading up to humanity's devastation by the Cylons.

The prequel, called "Caprica," heads a list of development projects the cable network unveiled Wednesday. Also in the works are a miniseries based on the book "Chariots of the Gods" and series from Jesse Alexander ("Alias"), Christopher McQuarrie ("The Usual Suspects"), Eric McCormack and Freddie Prinze Jr.

Additionally, legendary B-movie director Roger Corman will produce two films for Sci Fi's Saturday movie franchise: "Cyclops," about the mythical beast wreaking havoc on ancient Rome, and "Supergator," which pretty much explains itself.

"Caprica" will be set more than 50 years prior to the events of "Battlestar Galactica" and focus on the lives of two families -- the Adamas (ancestors of future Galactica commander William) and the Graystones. Humankind's Twelve Colonies are at peace and on the verge of a technological breakthrough: the first Cylon.

As "Battlestar Galactica" is about a lot more than space battles, "Caprica" will be as much family drama as sci-fi tale. Remi Aubuchon ("The Lyon's Den," "24") is writing the pilot script; "Galactica" veterans Ronald D. Moore and David Eick will executive produce it.

"Chariots of the Gods," Erich von Daniken's book purporting to offer evidence that aliens visited Earth several thousand years ago, is being turned into a six-hour miniseries by writer John Whelpley ("Star Trek: The Next Generation," "Andromeda"). The miniseries will center on a soldier whose souvenir from his tour of duty may hold evidence of alien interference with human life since ancient times.

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