One of Jerry Goldsmith’s greatest sci-fi/fantasy scores comes to CD in complete form: Twilight Zone: The Movie, the 1983 anthology film inspired by the classic Rod Serling TV series. No composer was better suited to score the big-screen Twilight Zone adaptation than Jerry Goldsmith. By the early 1980s Goldsmith was a master in every genre of film, from intimate dramas to large-scale adventures, but he was particularly noted for his landmark scores for science fiction: Planet of the Apes, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, Alien and more—including Poltergeist (1982), for Twilight Zone: The Movie producer and co-director Steven Spielberg, and the original Twilight Zone series, for which Goldsmith scored classic episodes like “The Invaders”.
CBS replaced the original production team, and set out to do thirty 21-minute episodes for the third season; this way they could have enough episodes to sell the series into syndication. Robin Ward replaced Aidman as the narrator of these Canadian-produced episodes. To lead the writing team, the producers brought in a new group led by executive producer Mark Shelmerdine (I, Claudius) and supported by story editors Paul Chitlik, Jeremy Bertrand Finch, and J. Michael Straczynski. Straczynski authored more episodes that season than anyone else on staff. The producers named Straczynski the sole story editor following the release of Chitlik and Finch. Notably, Harlan Ellison was coaxed back to The Twilight Zone in the third season, and wrote what would be the next-to-last episode of the series, titled "Crazy as a Soup Sandwich."
The series debuted in an hour long format, but was put on hiatus only a few weeks into the season. CBS had moved the series to Saturday nights, which led to falling ratings. When The Twilight Zone returned in December, the episodes were half-hour shows, and generally contained only one story. The series was cancelled by February, with remaining episodes being aired over the summer as hour-long multi-story episodes. Season 2 only ran for 11 episodes; several of the unproduced episodes would be filmed for season 3. In regard to writing for the episode "The Girl I Married", J. M. DeMatteis commented "I have a feeling that the show that appears will not bear much relation to what I wrote. What I've found out is that this season - unlike last, where the script was pretty much regarded as sacrosanct - the network is really interfering a lot. Regardless, I know I did a good job and it was a real satisfying experience."
The second season premiered on September 30, 1960 with "King Nine Will Not Return", Serling's fresh take on the pilot episode "Where Is Everybody?" based on a real-life 1958 news story of the discovery of a crashed World War II B-24 bomber in the Libyan desert. The familiarity of this first story stood in stark contrast to the novelty of the show's new packaging: Bernard Herrmann's stately original theme was replaced by Marius Constant's more jarring and dissonant (and now more-familiar) new guitar-and-bongo theme. The blinking eye was replaced by a more surreal introduction inspired by the new images in Serling's narration (such as "That's the signpost up ahead"), and Serling himself stepped in front of the cameras to present his opening narration, rather than being only a voice-over narrator (as in the first season).