UA blasts off with Moore

Signs sci-fi maven for pic trilogy

Looking to develop its own homegrown franchises, United Artists is embarking on a space odyssey with Ronald D. Moore.

The studio has signed Moore, the co-creator, writer and exec producer of Sci Fi Channel's "Battlestar Galactica," to create and write an original sci-fi trilogy for the big screen.

Moore, whose writing credits include the features "Star Trek: Generations" and "Star Trek: First Contact" as well as episodes of "Star Trek: The Next Generation" and "Carnivale," worked with new UA CEO Paula Wagner nearly 10 years ago when she and partner Tom Cruise were producing "Mission: Impossible II," on which he received a story credit.

"Over the last decade, Ron has emerged as the foremost sci-fi, fantasy creator/ writer in the industry and working with him to bring his creative talents to the big screen is a great partnership for our studio," Wagner said.

UA president of production Don Granger brought the project into the studio.

Moore, repped by CAA, also is working on a prequel to "The Thing" for Universal.