‘Foundation' Based on Asimov's Work Thinks Big, Galaxy Big
AppleMagazine|September 24, 2021
Most TV dramas try to tell stories over a few years with maybe half a dozen central characters.

The new series “Foundation” is a bit more ambitious — try 400 years and 25 million worlds.

To say it’s sweeping doesn’t do it justice. Worldbuilding is one thing. “Foundation,” a four-year project debuting on Apple TV+ on Friday, is galaxy-building.

“I love being transported in story. I love epics. I love generational sagas. And so I just wanted to go for it,” said David S. Goyer, the series’ co-creator, executive producer and showrunner.

“Foundation” is built on author Isaac Asimov’s short stories that he started writing just after World War II as a 21-year-old and have gone on to become a cornerstone of the sci-fi genre. The series is ambitious enough to redefine sci-fi onscreen.

The saga begins 12,000 years in the future. Under the rule of the Galactic Empire, humanity has spread to the far corners of the galaxy and it has been peaceful, though authoritarian. Brilliant scientist Hari Seldon (played by Jared Harris) has discovered a mathematical theory that proves the empire is crumbling. Is he right? “Do you trust the math?” he asks.

“When you got a character who can predict the future, the question is, ‘Is he predicting the future or a possible future? And in a world where you can predict the mass movements of civilization, does one person’s will matter? Do I matter in the broad scheme of things? Does it matter what choices I make?’” Goyer asks.

Visually stunning and inventive, the series explores the trade-offs between individual liberty and the dangerous safety of dynastic rule, the notions of fate and free will, and extremism and dissent.

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