In Flash Forward, as in Sawyer's novel, everyone blacks out for a couple of minutes and experiences a vision of the future. Except that in the television version, people see five months into the future, not 18 years. And each season of the show will end with a new "flash forward" into the future, in a structure that co-producer Brannon Braga says is not unlike 24, which Braga also produces. (Braga co-wrote the pilot, along with The Dark Knight co-scribe David S. Goyer, who's directing it.)
Sawyer traveled to the Los Angeles set and met stars Jack Davenport (Coupling), who plays physicist Lloyd Simcoe, Joseph Fiennes (Shakespeare In Love), John Cho (Star Trek), and Sonya Walger (Penny from Lost). And he saw a "sizzle reel" which "looks like the trailer for the best damn movie you've ever seen." He was thrilled that so many of the show's stars have read and enjoyed his novel, and said Walger is doing such intense acting (with a fake American accent) that she had to be reminded to blink.
The buzz from ABC and the industry press is incredibly positive about Flash Forward. It seems highly likely that we'll be picked up for the Fall 2009 season. We'll know for sure by May 17 — and ABC will announce its fall line-up over two days on May 18 and 19.
And it turns out another "major TV player" was interested in developing Flash Forward four years earlier, but Sawyer's agent encouraged him to walk away, because they could do better. [Robert J. Sawyer's blog at SFWriter.com]