Amanda Tapping (Stargate SG-1) plays the protector of downtrodden monsters in Sanctuary, soon to appear on the Sci Fi Channel. Her character, Dr. Helen Magnus, is a "cryptozoologist" who creates the Sanctuary Institute to protect and study the mutants that skulk around her future dystopian city. Sanctuary is the first direct-to-web show to jump to a major cable channel. It's also the first TV show to use almost all greenscreen sets. Magnus and her daughter Ashley (pictured) also meet Jack The Ripper and Bigfoot, just in case you were worried the show might not be cheesy enough for Sci Fi. Click through for a gallery of stills, and more info.

It makes sense that the Sci Fi Channel would want to pick up Sanctuary, since Tapping is one of its biggest stars, and producer Damian Kindler also worked on Stargate SG-1. The network ordered 13 episodes of the series, which will incorporate most of the eight 15-minute webisodes Kindler has already shot, but with improved CGI effects. Some characters, including Tapping's assistant Will Zimmerman (Robin Dunne), will have an expanded role.


The show's move to cable is a victory for direct-to-web programming, as well as a sign that all-CGI sets, in the style of Sin City or 300, can work on TV as well. This time next year, you can expect to see hundreds of online shows featuring cult TV actors emoting in front of pretty CGI pictures. [Hollywood Reporter]