Kevin Smith Leaves BUCKAROO BANZAI Series

Written by Andrew Pollard Wednesday, 30 November 2016

TV News

In some disappointing news, Kevin Smith has decided to depart the Buckaroo Banzai TV series that was announced earlier this year.

Smith has long been a fan of The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai, the 1984 Peter Weller-starring movie that the show was to be adapted from, but a rights battle has seen the Clerks helmer depart the project. The issue here centres around the fact that MGM has filed a lawsuit against the property’s original creator/writer Earl Mac Rauch and the director of said ’84 movie, W.D. Richter. To Smith’s credit, he didn’t want to do this new TV series without having Rauch and Richter involved, and thus he’s decided to take himself out of the frame.

Explaining his departure in a Facebook video, Kev said, “This is not what I signed up for. I was caught off-guard [by the lawsuit]. I literally had no idea. It blows, man, because that’s the closest I’ve come to having my own show so far. This lawsuit comes from MGM legal – it doesn’t come from any of the people I met at MGM. I’m no longer involved. I don’t wish anybody harm; I wish all parties well. I hope these dudes come to an agreement, and if they do and they still want me involved down the road, I’ll be here. But why would they?”

It’s certainly sad to hear that good ol’ Kev Smith won’t be a part of Buckaroo Banzai, if the series even happens at all now. Smith had previously talked about how he’d love to get guys like Quentin Tarantino, Edgar Wright, and Richard Kelly in to direct an episode if at all possible, so he was certainly aiming big with this new take on a cult classic. As huge fans of both Kevin Smith and the original The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension, we were eagerly looking forward to seeing what could be done with a modern TV take on such a beloved old favourite. Alas, we’ll have to see how things pan out from here for the show and whether or not Smith can somehow become involved again down the line.

The original Buckaroo Banzai movie debuted back in 1984, starring the brilliant ensemble of Peter Weller, John Lithgow, Clancy Brown, Christopher Lloyd and Jeff Goldblum. The film itself is all kinds of bonkers (in the best possible way) and sees Weller playing the titular Dr. Buckaroo Banzai, a man whose many talents include being a neurosurgeon, a physicist, a test pilot and, of course, a rock musician. Using his vast skills, it’s down to Banzai to save the world against Planet 10’s Red Lectoids. The original movie absolutely bombed upon release but has gone on to be a much-revered cult classic.


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