'Sharknado 4' Is Taking on 'Star Wars' | NBC 6 South Florida

'Sharknado 4' Is Taking on 'Star Wars'

Syfy announced the latest installment of the hit franchise will premiere on July 31



    Gene Page/Syfy
    Ian Ziering as Fin Shepard in "Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!"

    Shark Vader is on his way.

    "Sharknado 4" has officially announced its title and premiere date, and "Star Wars" fans will surely get a kick out of it: "Sharknado: The 4th Awakens" is the cult franchise's latest installment's title, Syfy unveiled on Friday, and it's likely going to be the most clever thing about the TV movie, which will premiere on Sunday, July 31 at 8 p.m.

    Set to return are original stars Ian Ziering, Tara Reid (#AprilLives?!) and David Hasselhoff, with Gary Busey, Cheryl Tiegs, Cody Linley, Tommy Davidson, Imani Hakim and Masiela Lusha set to join the shark-infested franchise.

    Picking up five years after the events of "Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!," which aired last summer, "The 4th Awakens" will find Fin (Ziering) and the rest of the world enjoying a shark-free existence...until new disasters start occurring.

    The third movie ended with April's (Reid) life in danger, with the network letting fans determine her fate: "You decide if #AprilLives or #AprilDies," an announcement said, letting viewers vote for what would happen to the character. "We're not done yet."

    In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Chris Regina, senior vice president of program strategy at Syfy, said the original ending was going to be a happy family moment. But they wanted to turn it on its head. "We needed to do something that was going to keep the audience in jeopardy and want to come back for another 'Sharknado,'" Regina said. "That led to the idea that I came up with in having the audience vote. 'Sharknado,' more than anything on television, is a social interaction with the viewers, so we wanted to make it interactive. I'm hoping that we're going to break the Internet this time with the 'April lives, April dies' at the end. I think it's going to be precedent-setting. I can't think of an instance where another network has done something of that nature at the end of an event. Hopefully it's a TV first."

    "Sharknado: The 4th Awakens" premieres Sunday, July 31 at 8 p.m. on Syfy.

    (E!, NBC and Syfy are part of the NBCUniversal family.)

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