“Torchwood” Still Burning—Seems there’s still a spark of life in BBC’s adult “Doctor Who” spin-off “Torchwood.” The FOX network version of the show never came to pass (which I think we can all agree is a good thing). But now the American pay cable network Starz has announced it will finance a new season of the cult favorite—under the direct supervision of the BBC! The show, about a secret team of government agents hunting down dangerous alien technology, has been dormant since last summer’s epic Children of Earth miniseries. Starz president and CEO Chris Albrecht told the Hollywood Reporter that the new series “certainly will” have a larger budget than the BBC original. Considering what producers were able to pull off on a limited budget, it’ll be exciting to see what they can create with more dough. “Torchwood” creator Russell T. Davies is writing the new series, which he says will consist of a 10-episode story arc. The new show picks up where Children of Earth left off—which shouldn’t be too difficult, considering everyone in the cast but John Barrowman and Eve Myles perished. According to the official press release, the show will no longer be set in exclusively in Wales but will “widen to include locations in the U.S. and around the world.” Starz has had solid success lately with the salaciously historical series “Spartacus: Blood and Sand”—which certainly raises the hopes for a naked Captain Jack and Gwen. The new series premieres next summer.
Stiles Kills at Audition—Film actress Julia Stiles (10 Things I Hate About You, The Bourne Identity) is joining the cast of Showtime’s “Dexter.” Stiles will appear in 10 episodes in the upcoming fifth season as a “mysterious young woman who forms a unique relationship with Dexter (Michael C. Hall) in the wake of the death of his wife.” Sounds like a nice addition; but given the status of previous guest stars, I’m gonna assume she doesn’t survive the season. The serial killer drama is slated to return (with Stiles in tow) on Sept. 26.
Toons Return—Remember “Thundercats”? Remember “Voltron”? If you were a kid during the late ’80s, you almost surely do. Well, get ready for a major flashback. First came news that Warner Bros. Animation had begun work on an all-new version of “Thundercats” for Cartoon Network. The new version of the fantasy series will feature all the original characters but will have a more “anime” look and feel to it. It’s slated to show up sometime in 2011. Following close on the heels of that announcement came word that Nicktoons would be relaunching “Voltron: Defender of the Universe.” There’s been talk of a Voltron live-action feature film for a while now. Thanks to a lack of progress on that front, however, the rights holders wanted to launch a new TV series to keep the property fresh in people’s minds. The new series—titled “Voltron Force”—is expected to air next year, just in time for the 25th anniversary of the original show. So get ready for the onslaught of toys.