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See Cool "Making Of..." Photos From The Forthcoming SPACE: 1999 Blu-Rays!!

Merrick here...
As we've previously noted (HERE and HERE), the often compelling, highly memorable, sometimes flashy, occasionally dopey, and frequently uneven 1970s television series SPACE: 1999 is will soon be making its way to Blu-Ray. For all of its admitted imperfection, the the show has many strengths (particularity its first season) - it's very high on my list of "most anticipated" Blu-Ray releases this year. Network DVD, who is releasing the series in the UK, sent along a cool preview of some behind-the-scenes images that will be found on (at least) the UK version of 1999. I say "at least the UK version" because not all of the extras present on the UK release will be available on the version we'll get here in The States. This has happened before, will almost certainly happen again, and it's a profoundly annoying tendency to avid fans and collectors of sets such as these. What you see below are rare (EMBIGGENABLE!) photos from the filming of the series' opening episode - "Breakaway." Summations & context (between the rainbow brackets) are provided are from Network DVD's Steve Rogers. I love the fourth image - there's something classic about those men, dressed for business, tackling the daunting mission before them with style and intensity. Feels Hitchockian, or Kubrickian (I mean the nature of the BTS image itself - I'm not comparing SPACE: 1999 to Hitchcock or Kubrick). In the shot immediately below it (the fifth image down) you can glimpse is the mighty and consistently awesome Nick Tate - who you may recognize from subsequent appearances on STAR TREK: DEEP SPACE NINE, THE X-FILES, FARSCAPE, and LOST.

Historically the availability of stills for Space: 1999 has been very poor – when we came to do the DVD set of series one in 2005 all that was available for use was a small and uneven selection. More were known to exist, but they just weren’t available. When we came to start work on the Blu-ray set, and with the invaluable aid of ITV PLC (the owner and licensor of all the ITC adventure series, including Space: 1999) many boxes of stills and transparencies were uncovered and scanned in. Totalling nearly 1900 stills, many of these had been unseen since the mid ‘70s, if they’d ever been seen at all. Every single one of these images has been scanned in at high resolution and will be showcased in tiered HD galleries throughout the new Blu-ray release of series one. As a taster, here are some behind-the-scenes stills from Breakaway, the series’ pilot episode.

Filming began on Monday, 3rd December 1973. .

This is the clapperboard for the second day of filming. The scene being shot is the fight between the two Moonbase astronauts, driven mad by radiation.

This shot shows the full scope of the Main Mission command centre, including the upper level, along with the 35mm camera dolly and lighting rig.

Gerry Anderson (second from right) looks on as director Lee Katzin, puffing his pipe, sets up a shot in one of the Moonbase Alpha corridors. This shot shows the inner workings of one of the communication posts, and the wiring needed to play out from another camera source onto the comms screen.

Nick Tate seated in the Eagle command module cutaway set. As with the communication post above, the wiring to make the cockpit work is clearly on display.

Visual effects technicians position one of the Eagle models. This one is the nuclear waste dumping freighter, the waste dump set itself is at the bottom of the picture.

A candid shot of Martin Landau having an in-depth conversation with series co-creator Sylvia Anderson. Barbara Bain is having an equally animated conversation in the background.

Allocated only a ten day shoot, Lee H. K Katzin’s directorial style and other production problems ensured that the time spent on Breakaway doubled, with shooting finally completed on 11th January 1974. It was a long haul, as can be seen in the faces of the cast captured in this candid snap taken on set during filming – those pictured include Nick Tate (Alan Carter), Zienia Merton (Sandra Benes) and Prentis Hancock (Paul Morrow).

You can learn more about Network DVD's SPACE: 1999 Blu-Ray over at official page. We appreciate them sharing these awesome images with us and can't wait to see what else is on the discs. The UK version of the issuance, due November 1, is now up for pre-order HERE. Folks outside of the UK: this is not an "All Region" title so please take that into consideration before ordering. Network DVD is also releasing their set in some limited edition packaging - you can learn more about this via their Facebook page. The American Blu-Rays are findable HERE. Word is there's been a slight delay on the American release, so don't take Amazon's "release date" to heart (The Digital Bits says its now due late November, possible December). So it's stripped down, and delayed? Nice.
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