The horses he rode in on

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Check this page for the latest news on Buckaroo Banzai, including the script in the works at FOX and the video re-release (VHS and DVD) from MGM, as well as the novel re-release and anything else going on in the world of Banzai-dom. The most recent entries are at the top of the page. (WARNING: Some of the older offsite links probably don't work anymore.)

4 January 2005

Press Release

Yet another book has been added to Moonstone’s impressive line up of new and unique titles!


Has been acquired by Moonstone!

Yes, that wacky 1984 movie starring (Oscar nominees & Emmy winners) Peter Weller, John Lithgow, Ellen Barkin, Christopher Lloyd, and Jeff Goldblum is back!

Buckaroo Banzai is a fiendishly clever action-packed adventure/comedy/drama in an outlandish world you’ll want to visit again and again!

Buckaroo is part neural surgeon, part rock star, and some “pulp hero” tossed in for good measure!

Moonstone’s new book will be a NEW TALE of Buckaroo written by the character’s very own creator (and the movie’s screenwriter) Earl Mac Rauch!

The interior art will be handled by (“Star Wars”) Stephen Thompson.

With the guidance of the film’s director, W.D. Richter, the Buckaroo Banzai color mini series will continue the bizarre trail blazed by the film.

BUCKAROO BANZAI: a bold, titillating mix of particle physics, rock and roll, super-sonic speed machines, handsome men, beautiful women, and villains beyond redemption.

BUCKAROO BANZAI: if he’s not one thing, he’s another.

Movie reviews:

“Hip! Imaginative! An offbeat sci-fi adventure with humor from every dimension!” –Hollywood Reporter

“Buckaroo doesn't just think he's a hero, he really is one, complete with tour bus, numerous sidekicks and his own comic book. He's a renaissance man for the 20th century, demonstrating supreme confidence in his chosen career—he's the sort of hero the world could use more of.” –

“…you'll find Buckaroo Banzai a delicious and funny piece of sci-fi with the same appeal that the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series has long held. From its goofy hero to crazy dialogue…” –

“This insanely great little film has carved out a nice little niche for itself due solely to word of mouth by the rabid fans who refuse to let a good movie die.”-

Press release shamelessly cribbed from Newsarama.

Visit Moonstone and hit the message board to let them know you're jazzed for this.

26 April 2002
BB was mentioned on the TechTV show "The Screensavers" around the 16th and you could see the DVD menu on a TV screen on set as the show was going off. They also had added BB to their Geek Library awhile back.

16 March 2002
The new Video Watchdog magazine will have article by our own FAQ-master, Figment! On sale March 25th. Details at the Video Watchdog website.

17 February 2002
Current issues of Starlog (#295) and Cinescape (#57) talk to W.D. Richter about future Banzai projects.
And some more DVD reviews:

30 December 2001
DVD reviews are hitting the web:

4 December 2001
The book is out!
5 October 2001
The DVD is available for pre-order now from Amazon.
19 September 2001
DVD announcements have hit the web:
18 September 2001
MGM has an official listing for the TABB DVD now. Release is scheduled for 4 January 2002. Among the special features:
5 August 2001

Pocket Books to publish The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai


Pocket Books is proud to announce the return of a cult favorite novel, The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai, by Earl Mac Rauch. Based on the motion picture of the same title, Buckaroo Banzai has long been out of print and has, for years, commanded collectors' prices for those lucky enough to find a copy for sale.

The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai will be published in large-format paperback on December 4, 2001, with a cover price of $12.95 US/$19.50 CAN/ L 8.99 UK. The Pocket Books edition will feature a new introduction by the author and a full color insert with photos from the film.

Pocket Books' publication of The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai coincides with MGM Home Video's premiere widescreen release of the Collectors' Edition of the film later this year. Buckaroo Banzai had been scheduled for a mid-2001 DVD release, but was delayed when an outpouring of fan support caused MGM to rethink its plans. Realizing that Buckaroo Banzai's numerous loyal fans wanted more, MGM Home Video decided to produce an elaborate Collectors' Edition featuring many extras, including previously deleted scenes.

Loyal fans of Buckaroo Banzai will also find the Pocket Books novel of considerable interest, since it was written by Earl Mac Rauch, the quirky literary genius who also penned the film's screenplay. In his novel, Rauch reveals many secrets about the elusive Dr. Banzai and his associates that are not found in the film.

Here's what the back cover of the novel has to say about Dr. Buckaroo Banzai, the world-famous scientist, musician, physician, and philanthropist:

"I speak Spanish to God, French to women, English to men, and Japanese to my horse."
--Buckaroo Banzai

Buckaroo Banzai. A strange, elusive figure, his name whispered in barrooms and boardrooms, his advice sought by pashas and presidents, his exploits recounted in movies, novels and comic books that seem somehow more real than life itself.

Buckaroo Banzai. First and foremost an extraordinary brain surgeon. In his spare time designer and driver of the electrifying Jet Car, a speed machine faster than sound! Buckaroo Banzai. A happy man whose life has been marked by great tragedy, who speaks a dozen languages and writes songs in all of them. His musical sidekicks the Hong Kong Cavaliers--Rawhide, Reno, the Swede, Perfect Tommy, Flyboy, Big Norse, Pecos-- are one of the toughest, most popular hard-rocking bar bands in east Texas.

Join Team Banzai on their two-fisted, action-packed assault against the evil red Lectroids from Planet 10! Experience the horrors of the Shock Tower and the Pitt deep within the walls of Yoyodyne Propulsion Systems as Buckaroo Banzai fights against impossible odds to rescue Penny Priddy from the clutches of Dr. Emilio Lizardo, the diabolically alien dictator. Pray that Buckaroo will succeed, knowing only too well that if he fails the Earth itself will be blown to dust!

For the first time in nearly twenty years, Pocket Books is proud to present The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai. This special edition features a new introduction by the author and a color insert featuring photos and illustration seen here for the very first time!

"No matter where you go, there you are."

29 July 2001
Con report about the upcoming DVD
Original report submitted to World Watch OnLine by BBI Joni Sonic. This version includes some additions/corrections by ArcLight based on further reports.



Mojo had a lot of grand stuff on the BB DVD release due Jan. 2002.

Picture cut is as we saw it in theaters, except for the restored opening 8mm 1955 material with voice over. Being pretty pleased with the original cut of the film, any slight mods to the existing cut would have to be pulled from less-than-watchable available footage and the jarring quality difference would destroy any small advantage of the timing changes and ruin the storytelling experience. The opening historical footage was important, self-contained in quality and thus easily restored to the top of the film. sound track is newly polished.

DVD will contain at long last the full widescreen, (DVD 16:9 enabled) version of the film with MASSIVE menus and material options including the entire collection of production on-set photo slides from the director and a freshly-edited making-of documentary/interview promo assembled from the whole mess of material shot on set during production but never used to make the final marketing documentary. Nobody bothered. Quelle suprise. Pretty much all the principal actors are seen on set talking about the film, as are effects and model technicians and designers in their respective labs, all from 1984.

Mojo ran, as a background to his talk, the WHOLE of the MOS multi-take camera footage as shot in the desert for the 1955 jet car tests. Fun stuff if a bit repetitive. There was also a lot of raw camera footage from the HKC concert with Priddy, on board the bus, all with barely listenable production audio and again, interesting from a production standpoint but nothing remarkable. Just fun as a background.

DVD Commentary tracks were cut with Richter, Reno, and BBI Mojo.

There should also be blueprint and tech specs for both the '55 and '84 Jet cars (no they have NOT found the Jet Car yet, although it was reputedly a practical working 200mph jet-powered Ford truck built by a company that specialized in mounting jet engines on land vehicles) along with reams of production information. all DVD menu pages have BG music pulled from the original naked music tracks... including New Jersey's country intro music... and Mojo did promise easter eggs... he's having entirely too much fun working on this thing..

(original version appeared in World Watch OnLine #189 - 23 July 2001)

15 July 2001

The DVD is coming around December 2001! Amazon has a listing at Buckaroo Banzai DVD though it's not up for pre-order just yet. Keep an eye out.
Also, a new trade paperback release of the Novel is available for pre-order.

2 MAY 2001
A couple more tidbits about the DVD:

9 February 2001
"TABB" DVD news from IGN.COM! Here's the best part:

"While speaking with MGM Home Entertainment Marketing representative Allyssa Moore-DelPiano today, it was revealed to IGN DVD that the bare-bones edition of The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension DVD ­ formerly scheduled for a June 2001 release ­ has been pushed back to sometime in 4th Quarter 2001. In the words of Moore-DelPiano, the reason for the rescheduling to the 4th Quarter is, "So we can offer a disc that we know the fans will be pleased with."

5 November 2000

TABB is up for re-release in February 2001 from MGM. Amazon is taking pre-orders and what may be the cover is up over at the Buckaroo Banzai FAQ.

27 September 2000

Received by World Watch Online via secured network 9/25/00 9:51:33 PM Eastern Daylight Time:

Subj: The Silver Fox, Starcon 2000, and Buckaroo Banzai

As you all know, Terry Erdmann, the Silver Fox (and yes, he still is!) came o Starcon 2000 with all sorts of information about Buckaroo Banzai and the TV series. The good news, and there is quite a bit, is that, yes, there will be a TV series. There are several scripts written (half a season's worth at this point) and there has been some casting. The bad news is the time frame. Unless a miracle happens, and Terry gave an emphatic no to that, the series wil not make it this year. However, Terry was was equally serious in that he feels it will happen within the next 3 to five years, depending on the studio. It could be any studio, too. Rick Richter has given Fox first option, but if they don't pick it up, he will consider UPN, WB, or a cable channel. Mr. Richter is dedicated to getting Buckaroo on the air.

Terry also said that the best way to help this was the web sites. Official and unofficial sites. Mr. Richter knows we're out here and he knows the numbers are growing. So, keep those sites, chat room, and e-newsletters going. Terry said letters could be written to Fox, but the websites are better. Mr. Richter also has three books written about Lizardo and all of his "adventures". He will have them published the same time the series airs.

The letter Terry brought with him is already posted on the World Watch One website. I also got to see the two minute video made to promote the TV series. Way too cool!

Anyway, that's the bulk of the Silver Fox's dialog with about 50 or 60 BBIs. Afterwards, we all watched a showing of Buckaroo Banzai. It was great fun.


Subj: More News about Buckaroo

I did forget one piece of information that Terry wanted passed on...

Mr. Richter has licensed a newish logo for Buckaroo Banzai, its an updated version of the flying double BBs. Underneath is the title of the TV series, "Ancient Secrets and New Mysteries". There was also mentioned the possibility of other merchandise being marketed soon. This included a jetcar model and various action figures.


More info from Silver Fox can be found at Starland.

Received by World Watch Online via secured network 12/16/99 10:53:32 PM Eastern Standard Time:
(also posted to the official Buckaroo Banzai site)

To: All friends of Buckaroo Banzai
From: W.D. Richter
Subject: December 14, 1999
Date: Status

Dear Friends:

Dr. B. Banzai stopped me in the hall a few days ago. He’d been working with a team of NASA engineers for 72 hours straight, trying to establish contact with the Mars Polar Lander. As you can imagine, he was pretty haggard, but not so tired as to fail to say "hello" to a friend.

Anyway, Dr. Banzai wanted to tell me how much he had enjoyed reading Earl Mac Rauch’s revision of the "Buckaroo Banzai: Ancient Secrets & New Mysteries" pilot script for the proposed Fox Television series. He said that he was particularly pleased that Rauch’s new version focuses even more on certain ongoing threats to public safety. "Without being too alarmist," said Banzai, "I think you are performing a public service by helping people to realize the insidious dangers posed by the World Crime League. For that, I salute both you and Fox Television."

Dr. Banzai asked me when we might expect a decision from the network on whether to "go to pilot" with the project. I explained to Dr. Banzai that the revision, which had been requested by Fox, had just gone to the network last week. The nature of the television industry, I explained, was that it was inherently unpredictable. Projects can languish in "development hell" for what seems like forever, only to be "fast-tracked" at the drop of a hat when you least expect it.

"How well I understand that," Banzai smiled. "It is as Albert Einstein once observed, that a moment on a hot stove seems like an eternity, while an afternoon with a pretty girl seems like an instant." In the meantime, I reminded him, Rauch continues his work on the "Lizardo Quartet" of novels.

At that point, Mrs. Johnson interrupted us with an urgent call for Dr. Banzai from the United Nations Famine Relief Project (something about airdropping watermelons), and he was off. I could only wonder what adventures the future still holds for the good doctor.


W.D. Richter

IGN has a review of the first draft of the proposed pilot script.

29 August 1999
Another BB article hit Aint-It-Cool-News, this time about the possibility of Dark Horse comics getting in on the BB action.

Received by World Watch Online via secured network 7/29/99 7:57:18 PM Eastern Daylight Time:

To: All Fans of B. Banzai
From: W.D. Richter
Subject: The Way Things Are

A few years ago, I overheard Dr. Banzai remark to a concerned unit of Tibetan commandos as the clock struck midnight in a particularly dark hollow of the Universe: "We’re all in this together...whatever ‘this’ is." Now, B. Banzai was actually waxing philosophical, I concluded, and was thus referring to our shared time on this and other planets ... but his remark might easily be brought down to Earth and used to describe the crazy adventure of bringing his exploits back to the screen -- silver, cathode-ray, or plasma, take your pick.

And so now, it seems, we must temporarily divert our energy from the task at hand to contend with rumors that the forces of evil have gathered to demand we "dumb down" the great pilot script Mac Rauch completed in January ... and that Mac and I are "fighting tooth and nail" against such madness.

But this is only more gibberated nonsense. In fact, we have received no orders from anybody anywhere in any form whatsoever. Yet. But if we do, can you imagine what Buckaroo’s instructions to us might be? I have my hunches.

Aint It Cool News has more on the series, including a link to Foundation Imaging, who have also done some interesting Jetcar footage.
5 July 1999
Aint It Cool News snuck some series news into their review of 'GvsE.'

Aint It Cool News provides a link to the VFXPro website which includes purported "test footage" of the Jetcar for the new series. Legit, or just some folks at VFXPro playing around? Stay tuned. LINK NO LONGER ACTIVE!

31 December 1998
Received by World Watch OnLine via secured network 12/31/98 9:13:50 PM Eastern Standard Time

Dear friends of Buckaroo Banzai:

In response to the many inquiries we have received regarding the possibility of a Buckaroo Banzai television series on the Fox Network, I am pleased to announce the official Banzai Institute web site. Like the Institute itself, this web site is dedicated to the betterment of the human condition through scientific research, public service, and rock-n-roll.

The Banzai Institute web site, available on the World Wide Web at, features the latest news of Institute activities interwoven with tantalizing hints of Buckaroo's future adventures. Also available on the site are notes on Buckaroo merchandise, links to fan sites, and an exclusive interview with Dr. Banzai himself, written by Reno Nevada (with a little help from his friend, Earl Mac Rauch). Of special interest to students of Banzai history is a never-before-seen video excerpt from the original director's cut of the 1984 movie, THE ADVENTURES OF BUCKAROO BANZAI ACROSS THE EIGHTH DIMENSION.

As Dr. Banzai says in his introduction to the site, we hope that you "move with grace and leisure among these sundry offerings" which are being made available to all Institute members and other friends of Buckaroo Banzai, wherever they may be.

Faithfully yours,

W.D. Richter

News on the possible Buckaroo Banzai series hits the web:

Sci-Fi Channel's Sci-Fi Wire




Received by World Watch OnLine via secured network 12/11/98 4:28:44 PM Eastern Standard Time

FROM: W.D. Richter
TO: Loyal Buckaroo fans everywhere
SUBJECT: Buckaroo Banzai pilot script
DATE: December 11, 1998

What a pleasure it is to make this announcement: Earl Mac Rauch has just completed the hour-long pilot episode script for our proposed Fox Network / PolyGram Entertainment television series, "BUCKAROO BANZAI - ANCIENT SECRETS & NEW MYSTERIES."

The script will be submitted to the Fox Network on Tuesday, December 15, 1998 and, if well-received, will be the basis for an exciting weekly exploration of Dr. Banzai, his extraordinary accomplishments, and the equally extraordinary people who volunteer their time at the Banzai Institute.

Hopes run high at the Institute. A courageous gentleman at PolyGram named Steve Gelber (a die-hard fan) has championed our cause and has found an equally adventuresome ally in Rob Dwek of the Fox Network. Rob commissioned the pilot script only a month ago, and Mac Rauch has been writing away furiously, night and day, since then.

Perhaps one of the most exciting recent developments has been the arrival at the Fox Network of Doug Herzog as new president of its entertainment division…and, as such, its chief television programmer. Mr. Herzog comes to Fox from Comedy Central (and before that MTV) where he drew praise for his bold, innovative, and radical programming...a strategy he’s vowed to implement at Fox as well. I was particularly encouraged by Mr. Herzog’s remarks to the media when his appointment was announced: "I think you’ve got to look at different ways of being funny. I’m going to take chances and take risks. I’ve always seen Fox as a maverick brand, a renegade brand."

I’ve always seen Buckaroo Banzai and the Hong Kong Cavaliers as a maverick band, a renegade band...and they certainly have different ways to be funny...and they sure as hell take chances and risks. Wait until the pilot if you doubt me on that. Buckaroo finally locks horns with The Scourge of Burma, The Spawn of Hell, The Face That Is No Face...the unspeakably horrid Boss of The World Crime League and Supreme Commander of the Legion of Death, the one, the only...HANOI XAN! It’s not a pretty sight.

And look to Simon & Schuster in the not-too-distant future (their Pocket Books division) for a new series of Buckaroo novels that Mac Rauch will be adapting from the secret journals of that hard rockin’ Hong Kong Cavalier, Mister Reno Nevada. In fact feel free to contact Simon & Schuster to reserve your copy now! And thank you for all the years and years of wonderful support. We owe you one.

Received by World Watch OnLine via secured network 11/3/98 6:12:01 PM Eastern Standard Time from trusted BBI "Go-Between"

Just got off the phone with W.D. "Rick" Richter. He and Earl Mac Rauch have signed a deal with Fox Network to write a pilot script for a possible "Buckaroo Banzai" television series!

Please spread the word ASAP. We will be looking for fan support of the concept so that Fox understands that there is a built-in audience for the project; that this is something truly special. (More to follow soon!)

Thanks to the respective sources who've contributed the information presented here.

Main Page - The Mailing List - The Banzai Institute - Image Gallery - Library - Film Room - Banzai Stuff - Post Office - News Archives - DVD Campaign - Buckaroo Banzai - Rawhide - Reno - Perfect Tommy - New Jersey - Pecos - Prof. Hikita - Mrs. Johnson - Pinky Carruthers - Penny Priddy - Other BBIs - ArcLight - Other Stories - Chat Room - Bunkhouse Board - Earl Mac Rauch/W.D. Richter - Cast List - Banzai Music - Web Ring - Link Pages - Page News - Classifeds

Page updated 26 April 2002