The great thing about being the show runner is that the position commands respect. Gone are the days when I would make a request for something – say a new book shelf or another insert shot of the floppy hat – receive a “I’ll see what we can do” response, and ultimately end up shelfless and occasionally floppy hatless. Now, when I make a request, things are different. It’s no longer “I’ll see what we can do.“ The response is: “No problem.” For example, the other week I requested that read-throughs no longer be held on Friday because it was the most difficult day when it came to actor availability. “Fridays are a pain. Any day but Friday, okay?,”I requested. And do you know what the response was? Yup. “No problem.” Ah, how sweet it is.
Anyway, today – Friday – we had our readthrough for Travelers. Jill Wagner (who it turns out is an old friend of Jason’s) participated and then headed down to costumes for her fitting. I went down and snapped some pics (No! Not of the actual fitting! My show runner title only gets me so far.), got some great shots of our terrific costume department – Val, Koreen [going crazy with the clothes], and Lesley – and a couple of shots of our special guest star. I then headed over to Stage 1 where Andy was shooting a jumper scene for Lifeline, then over to Stage 2 where they were putting the finishing touches on the Traveler’s set. I also swung by post and watched Martin Gero’s three hilarious Atlantis promos (with cameos by Joe Flanigan, David Hewlett, and Jason Momoa). He did such a terrific job that I instantly regretted not having hired him to do our wedding video that, in retrospect, could have benefited from a bike stunt and perhaps one additional explosion.
Oh, and to all those wondering about the post wing and fried Mars Bar extravaganza fall-out – we are all alive and well (enh, close enough). I only woke around eight times last night but was otherwise unaffected. Carl admitted to an equally sleepless night marked by incredibly vivid dreams. Lawren did us one better: trouble sleeping, nightmares, AND a pimple. For his part, Alex slept well enough – when he finally got home. It seems he was so disoriented after last night’s meal that he got lost and, after a twenty minute drive, ended up exactly where he started.
Let’s play catch-up on the questions –
Shawna writes: “Owning a pug yourself, do you take more notice of other dogs you see on the street or other places (…)?”
Answer: Are you kidding? If we spot a pug while driving, we’ll actually pull over to say hi.
Anonymous #1 writes: “I was wondering how many episodes in season 4 are you writing personally not counting reunion and the mid season two parter nor the joint projects with your buddy Paul?”
Answer: Paul and I will probably write four scripts this season. Two down. Two to go.
Sanssong writes: “Does it ever drive you crazy that people who have NO experience or knowledge of the television business comment on your decisions as if they are experts?”
Answer: Only when they claim to have plenty of experience and knowledge of the television business (“I worked for the local WKRAP affiliate in Estonia and I should know what I’m talking about…”) and then go on to make ridiculous assumptions, displaying an utter lack of experience and knowledge of the business.
Smiley Face06 writes: “Have you read the Harry Potter books? If so, which book is your favorite?”
Answer: I’ve read all of the Harry Potter books to date. My favorite: The Goblet of Fire.
Anonymous #2 writes: “What is it in Pugs that makes you go crazy. Is it their personalities or is it because they are little. I personally like the big dogs like Great Danes or St. Bernard. How much does a pug cost by the way?”
Answer: Pugs have very distinct, eccentric little personalities. They’re also incredibly affectionate and lazy which means more lounging and less walkies. They can go for upwards of $1500.
Alipeeps writes: “Have you read any of Iain M Banks’ novels?”
Answer: I haven’t although David Hewlett has recommended him as he’s a big fan. I’m thinking of checking out the Cultures series. Which book should I start with?
Prior_of_the_Ori writes: “Should the SG-1 movies be a success, and I hope they are, would we see story arcs introduced in the show being wrapped up in the movies? Say like perhaps that rumoured third Aschen storyline or return of those Foothold aliens?”
Answer: These would be questions for Brad and Rob as they’ll be the ones writing any future movies.
CatBoy writes: “I have no question, just a recipe that I posted on my blog and Ms. Jenny Robin suggested I share with you…”
Answer: Reminds me of the Nutella sandwiches I used to have as a kid. Well-rounded meal plans such as these made me the success I am today.
Paula writes: “Have you made your way through Lois McMaster Bujold’s Vorkosigan series, yet?”
Answer: Another author I’ve been meaning to check out. If I was to check out this series, which book should I start with?
Someday Scientist writes: “ Any book you’ve finished or heard of recently that you’d recommend to a microbiology/immunology major who adores contemporary and science fiction?”
Answer: John Scalzi’s Old Man’s War is a pretty popular book at Stargate nowadays. If you’re looking for some hard, meticulously researched and detailed scifi, check out Kim Stanley Robinson’s Red Mars.
Prior_of_the_Ori writes: “Do you think we will get to see Cadet Hailey again? Either in Atlantis or Universe or in the movies?”
Sarcastic 8 Ball says: Are you kidding?
Chevron Seven writes: “When you get a chance to travel, do you go for out of the way places or major tourist spots? And is there any place in the States that you want to visit, but haven’t had a chance?”
Answer: I’ve never been a beach and roughing it guy, preferring big city adventures. Tokyo and Hong Kong are two of my favorite vacation destinations for example. As for the U.S. – Fondy and I would love to head back to San Francisco some day. And I’ve always wanted to check out the home of some good barbecue.
Anonymous #3 writes: “Excuse me while I die laughing over the fact that it appears that while eating that crap (and yeah, your arteries will tell you it’s crap) you’re drinking DIET coke? What’s that for, to off-set the calories in the deep fried mars bar?”
Answer: Technically, I wasn’t drinking the diet coke. I had the slimming bottled water.
Anonymous #4 writes: “Speaking of promos, Joe, have you seen the absolutely ridiculous ads that Scifi is using to promote the upcoming episodes? They’re horrible! The one for SG-1 gives away just about every cool image and episode resolution from the final ten episodes.”
Answer: We’ve complained about it in the past, even made jokes about it on the show. They’re clearly graduates of the Robert Zemeckis school of teasing.
Anonymous #5 writes: “Have you had your cholesterol checked lately?”
Answer: Nah. It would be too depressing.
Anonymous #6 writes: “I can’t help but notice that Lawren looks alot like a supposed curious passer-byer from last week’s rally.”
Answer: I think you’re referring to Alex Levine. He’s intensely curious by nature.