Stargate SG-1 (often abbreviated as SG-1) is a Canadian-American military science fiction television series and part of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's Stargate franchise. The show, created by Brad Wright and Jonathan Glassner, is based on the 1994 feature film Stargate by Dean Devlin and Roland Emmerich.
The television series was filmed in and around the city of Vancouver, British Columbia. In the United States, Showtime broadcast the first five seasons beginning in 1997 before the series moved to the Sci Fi Channel for its last five seasons. The final episode premiered on Sky1 in the United Kingdom on March 13, 2007, three months before its United States premiere. With 10 seasons and 214 episodes Stargate SG-1 surpassed The X-Files in 2007 as the longest-running North American science fiction series on television .
The story of Stargate SG-1 begins about a year after the events of the feature film. A network of ancient alien devices called Stargates connects a vast multitude of planets within our Milky Way galaxy for interstellar travel. Later episodes reveal that this network is capable of spanning not just planets within the Milky Way, but with sufficient power, can provide intergalactic travel as well. Stargate SG-1 chronicles the adventures of SG-1, the flagship team of over two dozen teams from Earth who explore the galaxy and defend Earth against alien threats such as the Goa'uld, Replicators and later the Ori.
The composition of the SG-1 team is stable in the show's first five seasons but changes several times in the remaining seasons. The series expands upon many Ancient Earth mythologies such as Egyptian mythology, Norse mythology, and Arthurian legend. The 2008 direct-to DVD films Stargate: The Ark of Truth and Stargate: Continuum continue the adventures of SG1.
The series was a ratings success for Showtime and the Sci Fi Channel, and was particularly popular in Europe and Australia. Although it received little critical response, Stargate SG-1was honored with numerous awards and award nominations in its ten-season run. It also spawned the animated television series Stargate Infinity in 2002, the live-action spin-off TV seriesStargate Atlantis in 2004, and the live-action TV series Stargate Universe in 2009 which ended in the Spring of 2011. Merchandise for Stargate SG-1 includes games and toys, print media, and an original audio series.
Stargate SG-1 resumes the plot of the original feature film and follows the present-day adventures of SG-1, a military team from Earth. SG-1 and two dozen other SG teams venture to distant planets using a fictional alien portal known as a Stargate, which in the series is housed in a top-secret United States Air Force military base known as Stargate Command (SGC) underneath Cheyenne Mountain in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
In the first eight seasons, the mission of the SG teams is to explore the galaxy and search for alien technology and allies to defend Earth against the Goa'uld, a snake-like parasitic alien race that takes humans as unwilling hosts. As explained in the series' backstory, the Goa'uld transported human slaves from Earth to other habitable planets across the galaxy thousands of years ago and now pose as gods of Ancient Earth mythologies, particularly Egyptian mythology.
SG-1 eventually learns that highly evolved human-like beings, known as the Ancients, had originally built the Stargate network millions of years earlier, before they used their extraordinary powers to Ascend to a higher plane of existence, after which they pledged to not interfere in the lives of other species. The Ori, who belong to the same race of ascended beings as the Ancients but who use their powers to subjugate other species, forcing them to worship the Ori and to believe a doctrine of religious fundamentalism, assume the role of the main antagonists in seasons 9 and 10.
Cancellation and Future of Stargate:
On August 21, 2006, a few days after the premiere of SG-1's milestone episode "200", the Sci Fi Channel confirmed that Stargate SG-1 was not being renewed for an eleventh season. While news outlets cited declining ratings, expensive production and lack of promotion as possible reasons for the cancellation, the Sci Fi Channel's Mark Stern merely stated the decision was not ratings-based. Instead, he said the production staff was given enough time to tie up all the loose ends of the story, and SG-1 cast members were planned to be incorporated into the renewed Stargate Atlantis.
Meanwhile, the SG-1 producers and rights-holder MGM expressed a desire to continue SG-1as a movie, mini-series, or an eleventh season on another network. Brad Wright confirmed the production of two direct-to-DVD films in October 2006, and Amanda Tapping joined the Atlantis cast for their fourth season. The first film, Stargate: The Ark of Truth, was released in March 2008 and wraps up the Ori storyline. The second film, Stargate: Continuum, is an alternate time-line time travel story and was released in July 2008. A special edition of the two-hour pilot episode "Children of the Gods" with re-edited scenes and a different score has also been produced.
In April 2009, MGM confirmed a third new SG-1 film that Brad Wright had first announced in May 2008. Joseph Mallozzi revealed the working title as Stargate: Revolution. The film was planned to be written by Wright and former Stargate Atlantis executive producer Carl Binder. Martin Wood would serve as director. The premise of the film would have been the "possibility of the Stargate program going public". According to Wright, the film would center on the Jack O'Neill character and would reunite as many of the SG-1 cast as possible, depending on the cost of the film and actor availability.
The character of Vala Mal Doran would not appear in the film. Amanda Tapping confirmed her appearance in this SG-1 film and the first Atlantis movie in September 2008, and Michael Shanks (Daniel Jackson) confirmed his and Richard Dean Anderson's participation in January 2009. No contracts had been signed by April 2009, but Wright stated that he "can almost guarantee we are proceeding with the SG-1 movie this year ". Nevertheless, production was put on hold.
Wright explained that the late-2000s recessionmade DVD premieres less lucrative for MGM than in the years before, and he also pointed to the financial crisis of MGM as reason for the delay. Wright and Joe Mallozzi expressed optimism that production would eventually start, until Wright announced in April 2011 that the SG-1 film project was permanently shelved, along with plans for future Atlantis and Stargate Universe films and a cross-over film incorporating elements from all three series.
By then, neither the Atlantis nor Universe television series were produced anymore. Still, Wright did not rule out future Stargate films, saying; "It's a franchise. Stargate is not over. Somebody smart from MGM is going to figure it out, and something will happen."