Q&A: Brannon Braga and Rene Echevarria

Peden + Munk

Brannon Braga and Rene Echevarria on the size, scope and future of Terra Nova

What challenges come with a large-scale project in today's economic climate?

Braga: I don't think the scale is the core issue; I think concept is the core issue. The scale of it was necessary to execute the concept. Is it an ambitious, unique concept for a TV show that could grab a lot of attention? That's what we're hoping.

Who is the show for?

Braga: It has a very broad appeal, a lot like Star Trek -- there's a little something for everybody; it has a timeless and ageless premise, and there's no reason it wouldn't be appealing to virtually everybody.

Echevarria: We wrote it as a show for adults because we know that there's no way you're going to be able to keep kids away from it.

Take us back to that moment when Fox realized that Terra Nova wouldn't be ready for its May preview. What was the reaction?

Echevarria: Would they have hoped for perfection the first time around? Sure, anybody would have; that was the plan, they'd already announced it before we started filming. It's never fun to publicly change an announcement, and it leads down the line to questions like we're having now.

There's a lot of talk about Terra Nova's filmic qualities; people say it's Jurassic Park meets Avatar. Is it too big for TV?

Braga: No, not in my living room. Even when people watch on their computer, it's in high-def. This show is better for today's television screens than 10, 20 years ago. So this is a product of its time in some ways. It would hold up in a movie theater, quite frankly.

Given the scale and scope of the project, could Terra Nova pull off a 22-episode season? (Its first season will be 13.)

Braga: Absolutely. The biggest concern is sustaining the show. Are there 100 episodes here? What are we going to do every week?

Echevarria: The show will not only have a big appeal here on Fox but internationally as well, and that's going to justify the fact that it's more expensive than your typical cop show.