Also on Monday, we’ll be discussing Paul’s rewrite of Justice. It’s a very strong script and, going by the consensus preliminary response, he should have an easy time implementing any notes.
Carl, meanwhile, is deep into Life – writing, thinking, rolling his eyes, pacing in frustration, and, occasionally crying. Given my experience, this indicates the script is coming along swimmingly.
Rob put out his pass on Earth and it’s terrific. The Chloe scene merits special mention – but nothing beyond the fact that it merits special mention because of the secrecy surrounding anything to do with the show. I was going to post (what I assumed to be a fairly innocent and non-spoilery) a pic of the Icarus base logo only to have headquarters put the kibosh on it. I’m thinking in about two weeks, however, I should have the all-clear to finally upload some photos of actor David Blue’s footwear.
Brad’s script, Fire, is also out and it is pure BW: action, humor, and enough angst to trigger an anxiety attack in even the most composed of viewers. The scene about halfway through with the characters when the thing happens (sorry, I can’t be anymore specific) is a real nailbiter!
I wasn’t sure if this next bit was too spoilery so, just in case, I sent it to headquarters and they helpfully X’d out the portions they thought gave too much away. Anyway…
I swung by Stage 4 today where they were shooting the XXX and XXX scenes. On the way in, I ran into XXX and told her that we loved the scene in which she XXX XXX after XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX. I said “You may get tired of hearing it, but XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX.” She laughed and told me that XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX. I headed inside and saw that they were setting up for the next shot, the XXX XXX scene. XXX was on his way out and noticed that I XXX XXX XXX. He said “XXX XXX XXX XXXX XXX.” I didn’t hear him and asked him to repeat himself. Again, he said “XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX.” I laughed and headed inside, passing through the XXX set where I met XXX and we talked about her XXX. I peeked my head into the XXX set. Once XXX XXX XXX XXX it’s going to look awesome! So I headed outside where I spotted XXX. I XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX elastic band. She XXX XXX XXX parrot XXX XXX XXX haggis XXX. At which point XXX approached and told us that XXX XXX. XXX XXX XXX XXX meerkat XXXX XXX XXX. Child-sized furniture makes XXX XXX XXX melons XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX English to Esperanza online translator! The news that XXX XXX XXX XXX jungle soil XXX XXX XXX tray of biscuits shaped like butterflies XXX XXX. XXX XXX lambada XXX XXX featherless owls XXX. Even if XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX the ship would XXX XXX XXX undolphinlike XXX XXX XXX XXX yelling at the top of his lungs waving his XXX about the XXX XXX XXX thirty-six Latvian step dancers XXX XXX.
But keep it under your hats, please.
Reminder: Last day to post questions for actor Martin “Major Marks” Christopher!
Ponytail writes: “Joe, besides you and Jason breaking down ‘Broken Ties’, (my favorite episode of seaon 5), are any of the other actors helping out with commentary on the season 5 DVD set?”
Answer: Not to the best of my knowledge.
Sherwood Forest Maiden writes: “Hi Joe, maybe you hve answered this question before, and if so, my humblest of most humble apologies, but why does the network need to see a copy of the script before filming starts??”
Answer: Well, given that they do pay a licensing fee for the show, I’m sure they would want some input into what goes on their channel. By reading scripts and providing notes, they can flag any problem they have early in the process so that they don’t end up with a scene where, say, the show’s alien resident character ends up attending a reading of The Vagina Monologues.
AussieSGFAn writes: “So you all come up with the scenarios for each episode. Are some teases easier to come up with than others? And, how do you remember all the links in the plots? Like, who has died, this happened in this episode, that guys been promoted,etc. Do you rewatch episodes or rely on each other to remember, reread scripts and notes….?”
Answer: Some teases are easier to come up with others. It really depends on the story. The best ones are the ones like Tabula Rasa which leave the audience pondering (the WTF? tease) or surprised (The Holy Shit! tease). As for coming up with the links and plots – between the bunch of us, we’ve seen every episode of the franchise, often more than twice. And, if there is ever an outstanding questions, we have a DVD library and script archive we can always go to.
Shawna writes: “In general, and considering both printed work and the screen, do you think that the story that’s produced is better when it’s by mainly one person (like with a novel), or by a group of people working together (like with TV)?”
Answer: Apples and oranges. Co-written novels are a rarity whereas most scripts (regardless of the fact that a single individual may assume the writing duties) is a group effort.
Rose writes: “Regarding your answer about the writing process, did that refer to SG Universe or to all Stargate series? If it’s the latter, did Brad Wright and Mr. Cooper have that level of input during each of Atlantis’ five seasons?”
Answer: The writing process I outlined referred to all three shows: SG-1, Atlantis, and Universe. Brad and Robert did not take part in much of the day to day spinning and story breaking during Atlantis’s fourth and fifth season but, when they had the time, they did provide script notes.
Duneknight writes: “Joe, did you see watchmen yet? […] will there be alien enemies who pretend to be Gods in stargate universe?”
Answer: Nope and nope.
Trish writes: “Is Lulu any better or is it too soon to tell?”
Answer: She doesn’t seem to be enjoying the new food. Still, on the upside, her ears and paws don’t seem quite so itchy. On the downside, the herring and sweet potato kibble makes her very gassy. But I think that’s fairly common in French bulldogs.
Oops, spoke to soon. She just hopped off my lap and vomited up her entire dinner.
Squall78 writes: “ Do you know if that outtake with Connor Trinneer knocking off Sheppard’s/Joe F’s stunt person in “The Prodigal” and he says “I win” will be shown on the DVD?”
Answer: I believe that was during a rehearsal so the cameras weren’t rolling. Sorry.
For the love of Beckett writes: “ Thinking about this makes me want to read your short story sooner. Will you show it to Paul when you’ve finished the rough draft?”
Answer: My friend Kellie will be reading it first. If she says it’s okay to proceed, I proceed. If she tells me to bury it, I’m burying it.
Sulien writes: “I understand that having a TV series plotted out with full back story by one or two people is by far the exception rather than the rule, but writing by committee makes for inconsistent characterization and lack of continuity on too many occasions.”
Answer: Actually, you’ve got it backwards. Having everyone onboard at every stage of each scripts development ensures all of the writers are on the same page. Having each writer go off and do their own thing results in inconsistencies.
Ytimyona writes: “ …Brad, Rob, and Paul have done massive unaccredited rewrites in the past, fixing problem scripts…
Have you done this as well, Joe, or is that more Paul’s department?”
Answer: Paul handles the rewrites.
Airelle writes: “Is the food still good at the studio?”
Answer: Yes, especially the desserts!
Airelle also writes: “p.s. Forgot wanted to ask, If I read The Beyond,Jeffery Ford, should I read the 1st 2 books that say they come b4 it to make sense?”
Answer: I would start with the first book, The Physiognomy.
Alfredo De La Fe writes: “Why is it that most of the members of SG1 and those on the Atlantis team have rarely been promoted? I would imagine that saving the planet every once in a while would earn someone a promotion (and thus an increase in pay) I know that the US Military has very high standards, but…”
Answer: If our heroes were to be promoted every time they saved the planet, they’d have all been made General by the end of season two.
Propofol writes: “Just in case you didn’t get my previously submitted comment, I was wondering why the price increase on the Season 5 Atlantis DVD set?”
Answer: You’re asking the wrong guy. No idea.
LUIS writes: “Joe you a baseball fan???”
duneknight writes: “Joe, this question has always been on my mind but i guess i forgot to ask. Why San Francisco?”
Answer: Check out Paul Mullie’s Q&A. Initially, we were thinking New York…
My Name Is Scott writes: “That brings me to another question… why go back in time to fix anything, since the act of going back in time creates a diverging timeline, which does nothing to save your original timeline?”
Answer: Ah, I see your problem. You’re applying logic to the time travel concept. I believe I dedicated a past entry to a discussion on time travel stories – the different types of stories, the various versions we’ve done, and how each concept is, at its heart, flawed.
Luvnjack writes: “A group of artists on GW dedicated their art challenge to TPTB of Stargate this week!”
Answer: Love it. The Carl Binder banner is my new desktop wallpaper.
Sulien writes: “Speaking the Dresden Files, are you ever going to give them a try, Joe?”
Answer: Eventually, sure.
AnneTeldy writes: “1. In “Runner”, Ronon speaks of accidentally coming upon a world with a village near the gate and staying the night. This indicates he wasn’t just visiting worlds he knew before he was a Runner, but that Ronon was dialing random address. This made my niece wonder aloud why the people in Pegasus don’t accidentally connect to a Space Gates when random dialing from a world.”
Answer: In Ronon’s case, he was no doubt dialing an address that had been given to him. In the case of Atlantis (just like SG-1 before it) every off-world jaunt is preceded by a MALP that checks out the new address.
AnneTeldy also writes: “ 2. When there are two gates on a planet — as when Russia had their own gate program running — how does the address system work? It should be the same six symbols for both gates, so how come the Russians never accidentally showed up at SGC? And when the Replicators set the gate-satellite over Lantea why did it activate instead of the Atlantis gate?”
Answer: When two gates are in close proximity, one (known as the dominant gate) will take precedence over the other.
AnneTeldy also writes: “3. What did you think of Vurt? It was far, far from my favorite book when I read it years and years ago.”
Answer: I liked it.
Belouchi writes: “I was wondering if prior to releasing project twilight to the general public, did you guys consider making like a set of very short web episodes sort of what Battlestar galactica did in between seasons to keep fans on their toes and drooling for more?”
Answer: Nope. Sorry to say that it wouldn’t make much financial sense.