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That new Stargate movie is dead, and here's why

The Stargate franchise has been around for more than a decade, and after a few years on the shelf, it looked like a big-screen reboot was on the way. Not anymore.

Producer Dean Devlin, who worked with director Roland Emmerich to make the original 1994 film about a team of explorers who travel to a distant planet through an interplanetary gateway, tells Empire Magazine that plans to bring the sci-fi franchise back have hit the skids, and the project is essentially dead at this point. According to Devlin, he'd have to give up too much creative control to get the film made, and would rather not make it all than risk a compromised release that would disappoint fans. The first Stargate was made largely independent of the major studio structure, which afforded Devlin and Emmerich a large degree of creative freedom.

"It looked good for a couple of months, but now it's not looking so good," explained Devlin. "There are just a lot of things that have to fire at the same time, and there was a moment where I thought it was all firing at the same time, and then it all kind of fell apart. It's one of the reasons I prefer to work independently, Listen, I think if we did Stargate right, the fans would like it and we could do something really good. But if we screw it up, they'll reject it. As they should. But I kind of don't want to do it if I think that we'll screw it up, and that's one of the things that's holding us back."

A cult hit, Stargate inspired three TV series that ran for several years. Devlin and Emmerich weren't involved with the small-screen continuations of the franchise, and at times expressed resentment because it interfered with their original plan for a trilogy of films. Despite that, Stargate SG-1, Stargate Atlantis and Stargate Universe still attracted their own legions of fans. Between 1997 and 2011, there was always at least one Stargate show on the airwaves.

But after nearly 15 years, the franchise finally reached a point of fatigue. With ratings down, Syfy pulled the plug on the final Stargate series, Stargate Universe, after its second season. Initial plans for a potential run of direct-to-DVD movies never materialized, leaving Devlin and Emmerich an opening to mount the reboot. Unfortunately for fans, it looks like there won't be any new Stargate—big-screen, small-screen, or otherwise.