I decided to take it easy today because it was Sunday. Of course, since season five wrapped, pretty much every day has been Sunday for me. Not that I don’t have things to do. I have an SGA movie to write, that super, secret project to complete, a horror movie to set up, a pilot to work on, and, in about a week, stories to spin for the new Stargate series. The problem is that with so many balls in the air, it’s often hard to concentrate when you’re constantly shifting focus. It does help, however, to break things down and get a sense of where you stand:
The SGA movie: The ball is in Paul’s court. I bounced a beat sheet his way a couple of weeks ago. He’s been going over it this weekend and, if everything goes according to plan, we should be putting out to our fellow writers this week. Once we’ve incorporated their notes, we’ll be moving straight to script. Deadline: Sometime before we start shooting next year, but Paul would love to get a first draft done before year’s end. Barring any unforeseen complications that may necessitate a more significant rewrite, we should be good to go heading into 2009.
Stargate Universe: We’ll be returning to the office on November 10th and spend the ensuing two weeks spinning and breaking stories for the new series. Before parting ways, we should each have an outline in hand and a script to write. Deadline: When the series starts to gear up in late January(ish) each of us should come back with a script(ish).
The Super, Secret Project: Still super. Still secret. And incredibly daunting. Three scenes in and I’ve stalled outside the nursing home. Deadline: June of 2009 and, right now, that looms uncomfortably close.
The Horror movie: No idea what will come of the L.A. meetings but I figure this movie is a no-brainer (low-budget with an interesting marketing angle) so I’m going to double-down by putting my Canadian agent to work. His mission: set us up with one of the local production houses. Deadline: Sometime this year.
The Pilot: I have three pilot scripts in my back pocket and am halfway through a fourth. Unfortunately, I’ve been stalled at the top of the fourth act for going on two months now. Deadline: None to speak of but I would love to finish this script sooner than later. Having four pilots banked would be HUGE.
In addition to the aforementioned and my daily blog entries, I really should be giving more thought to my Tokyo trip. The gang at The Peninsula emailed to inform me I have reservations at ten of the city’s top restaurants. With my dinners booked, now all I have to do is figure out what I’m going to do with my days. I’d like to head down to Harujuku and snap some blog-worthy photos of the goth girls, but I’m worried they may mistake me for a perv and kick me with their inordinately pointy boots. I’m considering hiring a personal tour guide, someone to be my camera person, warn me if I’m about to eat fugu, and talk me out of police custody should the need ever arise.
Hey, speaking of my Tokyo trip, I received an email from TasteTV.com suggesting I get in touch with them regarding some upcoming project. Alas, I sent two emails their way and have yet to hear back. I’m simply going to go ahead and assume they want to sign me to a six figure deal to host their very own Tokyo Weird Food Purchase of the Day video segment. Watch for it!
The dogs have been acting mighty weird tonight, barking at the (seemingly) empty backyard. WTF? I tried to reassure Fondy by telling her it was probably just a ghost. She did NOT find this reassuring.
My Name Is Scott writes: “Hey! I was curious as to how the SGA movie will be named… since the SG-1 movies don’t have SG-1 in the title, will the SGA movies work the same?”
Answer: We’ve yet to decide on a title but I’m thinking either Stargate Atlantis: Turn of Events or Stargate Atlantis: The Happening or Stargate: The Third Movie.
LostCityGuardian writes: “ Was it not Acastus Kolya?”
Answer: Sure. In Genii. But back on Earth, it’s Augustus. Sort of the same way they call Octavius Okotavos and Peter Pierre.
P476 writes: “I rewatched Outsiders again and it still bugs me that Teyla did not sense the Wraith coming, what’s up with that? Did something alter her sense after The Queen?”
Answer: My guess? The three bars she had at the tavern.
Mellow Yellow writes: “How would airing the SGA movie on TV first be profitable?”
Answer: Keep in mind that there are two players here: MGM and SciFi. If it goes straight to DVD, MGM makes the money from the sales. If it premieres on a network, that network pays the studio a license fee for the right to air the movie first. This way, the studio makes money from the license fee and dvd sales. The network, meanwhile, makes money from advertisers who purchase ad time for the premiere.
Gilder writes: “Seen HBO’s “True Blood” or read the “Sookie Stackhouse” novels, Joe and all?”
Answer: Fondy and I watched the first couple of episodes. Fondy is a huge fan of Six Feet Under, Ball’s previous HBO show.
Alicia writes: “why not have a poll?? I want the original atlantis conference table in the sga movie yes or no”
Answer: To be brutally frank, the old conference room was a pain in the ass to shoot in. It’s gone for good.
Jean writes: “As you’re writing the SGA movie, do you need to put in act breaks as you would normally do for a TV episode (since it will also be airing on SciFi)?”
Answer: The movie will follow the traditional three-act film structure.
Blaine Nielsen writes: “i was wondering, will all the writers be able to do episode commentaries for season 5 dvd’s??? “
Answer: We should. I did one for Broken Ties with Jason Momoa.
Sessy writes: “How do stargate writers come up with names for characters?”
Answer: It depends. Sometimes, we’ll use foreign names (ie. Kiryk, Malikai). Other times, we’ll make up names (ie. Vraglazdoxxyll’tip). Still, other times, we’ll do a variation on a more common name (ie. Jallozzi 346).
Teyilia writes: “Uhm, do you know of a place that has martial arts (Wuxia) novels in english?”
Answer: Sorry. No idea.
Ikiniowa writes: “Wait a minute…Teyla’s not going to be in the 100th episode?!”
Answer: Wait a minute. She’s not? That’s news to me.
Arctic Goddess writes: “Can you tell us what Joe Flanigan, David Hewlett, Jason Momoa, etc. are up to these days?”
Answer: No idea.
Arctic Goddess writes: “If you were invited to the next Gatecon in 2009, would you go?”
Answer: No plans to attend any Stargate-related functions in the future. However, I’d love to head back to Comic Con to help support the super, secret project (if I do end up finishing my contribution in time).
Memnarch writes: “I was just wondering what would happen if two people in two different transporters on Atlantis hit the button for the same destination simultaneously. Would they both end up in same receiving point, or would both be negated until one was pressed again?”
Answer: The latter.
Alexandria writes: “I’m left wondering, why on earth would they cancel a show with such a following?? Only an idiot would do that. I assume, since you left Brad’s name off the list of producers that did not know, that he had a part in it in some way, shape, or form.”
Answer: Actually, the reason I didn’t include Brad or Robert is because I was referring to the full-time writing department for season 5 (Alan, Carl, Martin, Paul, and myself). Brad and Robert were still involved but to a lesser extent than in previous years. Also, with regard to the final decision on the show’s fate – we got the news from Brad as soon as he received it.
Alexandria also writes: “Sci Fi has adamantly claimed that they would love to see another season of Atlantis.”
Answer: Really? Well, then, let’s do it!
Pauline writes: “Hi Joe just checking up on Her Britannic Majesty’s Royal Mail service.
Did you receive the small cylinder of chocolate I sent you?”
Answer: In fact, I did. Someone in the office called to inform me it is sitting on my desk, awaiting my return. Thanks!
Rhonda writes: “Can you answer this once and for all please? Did Hermiod commit mass suicide with the other Asgard in “Unending?””
Answer: We’ve never said either way but if you’re looking to pin me down, then my response would be yes.