Ron Moore (briefly) talks about Wild Wild West

Cover to a 2017 CD soundtrack of The Wild Wild West

Ron Moore, a successful TV writer-producer, gave an interview to The Hollywood Reporter mostly covering recent and upcoming projects. But he also touched briefly on one that got away — a proposed new version of The Wild Wild West.

Moore didn’t say a lot. But here’s an excerpt from the interview, presented in Q&A format.

What’s the project that got away?

The Wild Wild West. Naren Shankar and I wrote a version of the rebooted Wild Wild West for CBS about 10 or 15 years ago. I loved that original show as a kid and thought it was an interesting mix of James Bond and the west with occult overtones that would deal with werewolves periodically. It was a really out-there genre piece and very unique. I was excited at the thought of getting my hands on it and disappointed when it didn’t go forward. I’d still love to find a way to get my hands on it again. It’s owned by CBS so unfortunately not something I have access to.

The project surfaced in 2010. CBS has begun a new version of Hawaii Five-0 (it would eventually run 10 seasons). So the network looked at The Wild Wild West, another property it owned and which ran from 1965 to 1969. As noted above, a new version didn’t come together.

Despite being set in the 1870s, The Wild Wild West may have have been the most fantastical show of the 1960s spy craze. Plots included alternate dimensions inside paintings and the captured brains of major scientists.

The show followed the exploits of U.S. Secret Service agents James West (Robert Conrad) and Artemus Gordon (Ross Martin). The agents traveled in style in a private train on their way to missions. Guest stars playing villains included Michael Dunn (as arch-enemy Dr. Loveless), Victor Buono, Ted Knight and Robert Duvall.

One Response

  1. Wild, Wild West was special and unique! I attribute it to the personalities to which they paid a lot of attention. It was about chemistry, on a par with MFU and ST of the sane era. The lesson is, anybody can write a plot, but its most difficult to capture the characters’ personalities in dealing with it! And making the audience a part of the adventure (that’s the secret)!

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