When you hear about a new drama series that's all about aliens and UFOs, your brain immediately autofills "science fiction." But what if we told you that History Channel's newest series is about aliens and UFOs? History Channel is supposed to be about real history, right? What is going on here?
Project Blue Book, a new hour-long scripted drama, is indeed on History Channel and it is indeed about aliens and UFOs. So what gives? According to the showrunners, it was an easy decision to take science fiction and history and marry the two, because it already happened.
From Academy Award and Golden Globe winner Robert Zemeckis, Project Blue Book is based on the totally true, top-secret investigations into Unidentified Flying Objects and related phenomena conducted by the United States Air Force from 1952-1969. Inspired by Dr. J. Allen Hynek (Aidan Gillen), a brilliant college professor recruited by the U.S. Air Force to spearhead this clandestine operation that researched thousands of cases, over 700 of which remain unsolved to this day, each episode will draw from the actual case files, blending UFO theories with authentic historical events from one of the most mysterious eras in United States history.
Speaking at the 2018 Television Critics Association summer press tour, Project Blue Book creator David O'Leary revealed that "it's the totality of the 12,000 cases that Project Blue Book did that is the backbone of the show." And series star Gillen was thrilled to take on a real historical figure after playing a fictional one for so long on Game of Thrones.
"All our plot lines and stories are based on actual reports," Gillen said. "Truth is stranger than fiction so having these stories based on real events and reports, they take these twists and turns that you wouldn't make up because it's more random than anything you could write." So even scenes with people seeing UFOs in the sky are all based on true stories, real reports that people filed. That's how you get aliens on History Channel!
And while Project Blue Book is a period piece, executive producer Sean Jablonski explained that the real Project Blue Book "was one of the original fake news" so it's all relevant today.
"It was literally created by the government," Jablonski said. "The '50s were a time when people talk about the good old days, wanting to get back to a simpler time but you had McCarthyism and you had Russia and this was a cold war so that's very much woven into the fabric of the show."
And seeing as how news just came out yesterday about scientists discovering water on Mars, O'Leary pointed out that new discoveries only lend credence to old theories about life on other planets. "There are so many theories," he said. "The more we learn about science, the more we learn about our universe and the more exciting it becomes. We live in an amazing universe."
Even Gillen believes that there is other intelligent life out there, somewhere in the universe, just like his character.
"Our universe is potentially infinite and there's probably life out there," Gillen said, revealing that he's seen a UFO when he was younger. "It could have been just a helicopter but I don't think it was. I did see some stuff and I didn't know what to do about it. Most people who report it are afraid of being ridiculed."
Do you think there is life out there? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
Images: History Channel