Emmy-nominated ‘Cosmos’ panel is out of this world (Podcast)

Space was in demand in more than one way on Monday as hundreds of Emmy voters packed The Paley Center for Media for an out-of-this-world event highlighting “Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey”. After a screening, host Neil deGrasse Tyson, executive producers Ann Druyan and Mitchell Cannold and composer Alan Silvestri took part in a Q&A. (Listen to the full podcast below).

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–Tyson, a world-renowned scientist, explained that a chance encounter with Seth MacFarlane led to the program airing in primetime: “Seth said ‘Why don’t I bring it to Fox?’ And at that second I thought that was the worst idea I’d ever heard. But then I began to think: ‘If ‘Cosmos’ appears on FOX that would be an extraordinary pathway for exposure.’  So about 12 seconds later I realized it was the most brilliant idea I’d ever heard.”

Cannold concurred that network TV was where “Cosmos” was meant to be: “So many talented people choose to migrate to cable because they think they can take more chances. [FOX] proves that [they] were willing to take enormous risks and put science programming on primetime.”

For Druyan, who believes there is a current thirst for this type of knowledge-based programming, “Cosmos” is showing “this search for knowledge is not only conducted by alienated psychopaths. It’s also done by people who are part of a community of minds.”

And Silvestri admitted, “I could literally have closed my eyes and scored ‘Cosmos’ without seeing anything because of the power of that story. When I would go to work in the morning in my jammies, because I work at home, I would begin the episode and even though it was early morning where I was, was at a campfire with Neil deGrasse Tyson who is now going to tell us all a story and that to me was the real key.”

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