March 5, 2010: A possible return visit? More items of interest from the Atlantis vault! And an SGU production update!
Poor Akemi isn’t enjoying Perth. Following her ten-day vacation in Vancouver (check out what an affable host I was in previous entries), she returned to Tokyo, unpacked, re-packed, then jetted off to Australia for six weeks of intensive English immersion. Well, one week in and neither the food nor the weather agree with her and she’s considering bailing and finding somewhere else to study English. Somewhere else like, say…Vancouver? I suggested she stick it out. It has only been about a week. Any of you Aussies have any interesting Perth recommendations for a first time visitor? An interesting sight or shop or perhaps a place that apparently serves the world’s best pizza: http://www.theage.com.au/travel/home-of-the-worlds-best-pizza–officially-20090212-85q8.html
The other day I was going through some of the art department output that has crossed my desk over the years and wondered if any of you might be interested in catching a glimpse (or in some cases a re-glimpse) of the various sketches and designs put together for Atlantis in its later seasons. Well, apparently, yes, many of you are very interested. So, picking up where I left off in that enormous pile…
Headsman’s Axe – Stargate: Atlantis, Season 5, Identity. Note the attention to detail in the description: “…dried, caked blood in grooves and low spots. – some rust”. That’s one mighty nasty looking cleaver. And the headsman who wielded it was one mighty nasty looking dude. Still, I kind of felt sorry for him as he ended up shot during the op to save Keller. I mean, come on! He was only doing his job!
Production Designer James Robbins comes by the office to show off the early design work.
James Robbins’ close shave with the finished prop.
Cliff Build – Stargate: Atlantis, Season 5, Remnants. One of the sequences called for Sheppard to almost go tumbling off a cliff. We had a Sheppard. All we needed was a cliff. So the Art Department and Construction obliged by building us one. The design calls for a “hero root” which “protrudes from crack in rock” – which Sheppard grabs hold of to stop his fall. The “greens build on deck” refers to the extra vegetation our Greens Department will put in place to make it look a little more natural. Finally, at the bottom, a note that any shots looking down will be greenscreen – calling on the VFX to transform the short fall into a deadly drop.
The actual “cliff”.
Not exactly a death-defying plunge.
Cliff Build, Profile – Stargate: Atlantis, Season 5, Remnants. Side view of our prospective cliff. A note at the top outlines the plan to have our faux greens marry with the existing greenery. The model shop is called on to provide the “hero root” (“hero” a reference to a prop that will play/be used in a specific scene). The Special Effect Department will be responsible for providing the rig cable that will support Sheppard/stunt double, making it appear as though he is dangling precariously from the cliff.
Running through the hero section of the root is 3/8 pencil steel, strong enough to support Sheppard’s body weight.
We shot this sequence at Stokes Pit. This is the location survey, scouting out the area well in advance of production.
Yesterday, we did a walk-thru of the new, raised set in Stage 5. So far, so cool. Then, this afternoon, we watched the Day 2 Mix of Incursion I. Action! Suspense! Cameos! And a most atypical death! Paul has finished a first draft of episode #6 which comes in at a whopping 57 pages. He’ll spend the weekend trimming. Carl continues prep on episode #4 (Pathogen), in addition to working on that outline for episode #7. Rob is off on a “distant location” scout for episode #8, but returns to Vancouver Sunday night. Remi is working on an outline for episode #9 while I begin tackling the freshly-broken story for episode #10. Linda and Brad, meanwhile, have started mulling over their fledgling stories. Our first cast read-thru early next week to be followed by our first day of principal photography on Pathogen (Yes, it’s episode #4, but it’s shooting in the #1 slot) and the start of prep on Intervention (Episode #1).
Today’s entry is dedicated to blog regular Deni. Happy Birthday!