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In an age where it can be difficult to determine which way is up or down, it feels like just the right time to bring back a series which turned viewers on their heads weekly.
The cast and crew of The Twilight Zone relaunch took to the blue carpet Sunday afternoon before their panel at PayleyFest to talk about the upcoming series. With any "reboot" or "re-imagining" or some other kind of "re," there will always be comparisons to the original.
When asked about this comparison, executive producer Audrey Chon told SYFY WIRE, "We're embracing what Rod [Serling] did but from an original sense. There are a lot of Easter Eggs, but the ideas we try to tackle [with our version] are with a fresh approach."
EP Win Rosenfeld added, "Rod Serling could [address] the major social issues of the day and at the same time make fun science fiction stories. At our best, we want to do the same thing."
Executive producer Simon Kinberg (who directed two episodes and the season finale) noted both iterations of The Twilight Zone were the same at their cores, "The show is genre storytelling with social messaging." He also added they wanted to make sure the message would get across no matter when viewers watched it. "[We] wanted a timeless feel to it, so it doesn't feel 2019 all the time."
When asked during the panel conversation why now was a good time to bring the series back, executive producer Jordan Peele said, "One sentence we hear at least once a day for the past few years is, 'I feel like I’m in an episode of the [freaking] Twilight Zone.'"
When asked how they approach the series given the current social and political climates, Chon told SYFY WIRE, "It's grounded, but it's not our reality. It gives us the flexibility to talk about [current issues] in a slightly different way."
Rosenfeld added, "Our characters are people who need a little push. They are flawed; they want something they can't have. We create a personalized nightmare for these characters through the form of something magical. It's this one little magical thing which can change a [otherwise] grounded story into a Twilight Zone story."
With the success of Get Out and now Us, Jordan Peele's influence is everywhere, and it will show within The Twilight Zone. Star DeWanda Wise said, "Jordan's fingerprint is all over the show. Everything is something he has curated, and it feels classic and fresh at the same time."
Rosenfeld said Peele's influence "permeates huge" within the show. "He's a master of genre and a die-hard fan of the original. [With Twilight Zone] we are getting the best Jordan Peele, and he's the perfect person to do the show."
According to Peele during the panel, "Rod Serling spoke to society through story. He felt it was the most powerful weapon against all the awful things in the world." With his previous two films, Peele proved he understands the philosophy, and we can't wait to see how The Twilight Zone extends it.
The Twilight Zone will premiere April 1st on CBS All Access.