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A Classic BATTLESTAR GALACTICA Scene Remastered Using CGI

Last weekend, TV creator extraordinaire Glen A. Larson passed away. Among the many series he created was a little space opera that ran from 1978-1979 called Battlestar Galactica, a kind of Star Wars on TV that had perhaps the best-looking special effects ever, due in no small part to having John Dykstra, one of the model-makers gurus from George Lucas’ film, as executive producer. Nothing quite like seeing big space battles between humans and shiny robot ships every week to get your heart pumping.

When the series was updated in 2004, it was hailed for its visual effects as well, but in a different way. It was all CGI by then, but some of the best computer animation on television, even winning an Emmy for outstanding visual effects in 2007. One of the artists who won that Emmy, and made Ronald D. Moore’s Battlestar Galactica what it was is Adam ‘Mojo’ Lebowitz who has taken his mad skillz (technical term) back in time and has updated a dogfight scene from classic BSG using modern visual effects and HD.

Friends, I give you… “The Living Legend” Project.

Taking a two-part episode, entitled “The Living Legend,” from the midpoint of the series, Lebowitz has given the Vipers and Raiders a 21st Century update. Now you can see what it’s like when Apollo (Richard Hatch), Starbuck (Dirk Benedict), and the rest of the pilots, including the titular legend Commander Cain (Lloyd Bridges), go out on a mission that’s got a little more intrigue than just your average fight in dazzling and dynamic CGI. I think it works pretty well, and even if you aren’t into mixing the old with the new, you have to admit it’s pretty phenomenal work. So say we all.

On what old sci-fi shows would you love to see updated effects? Maybe some Lost in Space, perhaps a little Manimal? Talk about it in the comments below.

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  1. Robert says:

    Very nice! And still no CG needed on Maren Jensen!! How about Space: 1999?

  2. Patrick Stutzman says:

    Without a doubt, Babylon 5.

  3. Brian Gross says:

    LOST IN SPACE! And great job… got the same feeling I got when I watch the remastered trek episodes. Like coming home.. but different in a good way.

  4. RoadRacer says:

    Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue.

  5. Orionsangel says:

    There’s this cheap respectable quality to the updated effects. They don’t make the effects look too realistic to maintain the look of the show. Similar to how they updated the effects in original Star Trek.

  6. Tj Shields says:

    I would love to see them update the original series with remasterd CGI space scenes with all the ships. It would make the series even better and you could really enjoy it. Personally If they just remastered the Pilot Movie and both Living Legends episodes, It would be enough to get everyone wanting the whole series re-done. 🙂

  7. Brad Evanson says:

    It sounds like Lebowitz redid the entire episode (it was actually a 2 episode sequence). If nothing else, I hope the entire episode was redone and will be released. I’d love for the entire series of original BSG to be redone and released. As a kid who religiously watched the original series when it aired back in the 70s, I need this to happen!

  8. Keef says:

    So the original was live action? AMAZING.

  9. satori says:

    This looks fantastic, I want this to happen.

  10. Craig Poth says:

    Paramount should let Mojo update his already amazing work on Deep Space Nine to get that show some much-needed HD love.

  11. um, we picked up THREE emmys and FIVE VES for our vfx and the series also received a peabody, thank you very much, not just one emmy. we raised the bar very high for television vfx and have been poorly copied endlessly since. Mojo invited me to take part in the little test and we had a blast, cranking out shots in hours. So strange that suddenly this has got everyone’s attention.

  12. BobDobolina says:

    Pretty darn cool.

  13. Neil says:

    I’m a fan of the original Battlestar Galactica, but I always cringed at the terrible, recycled outer space shots. This version is a little heavy on the CG eye candy, but I enjoyed it. I think it improves on the original. 

  14. michael says:

    I don’t think it adds that much to the scene. The cockpit pov is okay 1 but use it to much and it seems like more like scene padding and slows the pace. The classics are classics for both making the best with their limitations and the creativity in solving those problems. CGI is a to common place to be praised anymore its yesterday news.

  15. Chimpinalls says:

    Quark (look it up youngsters)

  16. xero says:

    that is Fraking awesome

  17. Malvolio421 says:

    Land of the Lost

  18. maurice says:

    SPACE 1999!

  19. Swano says:

    It’s go time. Mandelbaum! Mandelbaum!