With the back half of Stargate: Universe’s second season set to premiere in a little over a week (Tuesday March 8th on Space – or check your local listings), I thought it was high time I got around to posting more behind-the-scene pics…

So, following another sleepless night, I’ decided to reconsider the whole “charter a private jet in order to fly my dogs to Toronto” thing.  I called up a few places, inquired, received a few quotes.  Also received a slew of unsolicited assurances about the safety of charter jet travel which ended up having the opposite effect of what was no doubt intended.  While the woman on the other end of the line was going on about her company’s spotless safety record, all I could think was: “Why is she telling me this?” and “Holy shit!  She’s right!  This IS dangerous!”.

Guess who I saw today?

Yep. THIS guy!

Met up with Lawren for tacos at Chronic Tacos on West Broadway.  We sampled a respectable selection: slow-cooked pork, spicy pork, chicken, and beer batter-fried shrimp. And the winner?  Hands down, the beer batter-fried shrimp.  Surprised?

Anyway, it was great to see Lawren (and not just because he picked up lunch).  Depending on how things unfold, he well may be holding the fort while I’m away in Toronto. Please remind him to water the plants.

Well, I’m about to head downtown to Bella Gelateria for their Japan Night celebrations (where I’ll no doubt ignore all the other flavors in favor of three scoops of kasu ice cream), opened the back door and noticed THIS –

WTF?  When did Vancouver become Toronto?


hal ehrlich writes: “So it seems that you built a new set for the last epsiode , which you said was beautiful. doen’t it stink that you only get to use it for 1 episode ?”

Answer: Actually, we got to use it for two episodes.  But it still stinks.

Chad writes: “Your mailbag in this post reminded me that I’ve been wanting to ask you if Scorched Earth was always considered a one-off ep, or if there were ever any plans to revisit the Gadmeer after they had terraformed the planet?”

Answer: It was always planned as a one-off.  There was never any intention of seeing the Gadmeer beyond the image we glimpsed in the episode.

DP writes: “Thanks to Vancouver’s forward thinking in harassing the homeless population before the Olympics, you’ll be meeting many more homeless in Toronto. No, they didn’t magically find homes. Some moved to Toronto, temporarily, permanently, however you want to put it.”

Answer: Reminds me of Calgary addressing their homeless issue by purchasing one-way tickets to Vancouver for their homeless.  Their reasoning was the winters in Vancouver were much warmer and, thus, less dangerous to them.  How thoughtful!

Thornyrose writes: “By chance did you clear that post with Akemi, or are you counting on her good nature (or lack of interest in your blog) to keep her from chastising you later?”

Answer: She was present while I was writing last night’s entry.  She even contributed to the comments section.

gforce writes: “Regarding the sets, I got word a couple of days ago that the set tours for the April convention in Vancouver are not going to happen, which is disappointing (even though I was kind of expecting it.) I figured that news was a bad sign, but your comment on this post at least still gives us a little hope. Maybe it’s because of lack of staff around at the time?”

Answer: No.  I was actually there on Thursday when they were discussing it and the issue was one of costs for lighting up the sets.  Even without full lighting, it would have been quite pricey.

gforce writes: “Speaking of the convention, any suggestions for lunch/dinners at places that aren’t too expensive or “unusual”?”

Answer: Refuel, Modern Burger, Bistrot Bistro, Zakkushi, Yuji’s, Aki, Miku, Japa Dog, Don Francesco, Bella Gelateria.

Duptiang. writes: “How do they go about choosing those who will do these commentaries and do you expect to do any for the SGU?”

Answer: It really comes down to things – availability and interest.  I don’t believe I did (or will be doing any) for season 2.

StellaByStargate writes: “I know you’ve been quiet on the future of SGU/et al lately and understandably so. But, if you were a betting man would you say our chances of getting the SGU storyline (and those few other “goodies”) tied up 1) highly probable, 2) still possible, or 3) fading with each passing day?”

Answer: I’m going to go with 2) still possible.  The fact that the sets are still standing is a good sign.  It costs money to keep them up/the stages rented, so, at the very least, this does demonstrate a desire to see the production move forward in some form.

43 thoughts on “February 26, 2011: Some Stargate: Universe behind-the-scenes set pics! Private jets travel! Tacos! Ice cream! And a modest mailbag!

  1. Loved all the pictures especially the behind the scenes pictures and the snow pictures. Makes me glad for my sixty-five degree, sunny weather right now. 🙂

    I would be nervous about the plane flight too if they kept going on and on about their safety record. Hopefully you can figure out something that will get the dogs there with the least amount of discomfort.

    Well, anything is better than an exploding microwave, right? Yes, our microwave almost exploded tonight when older son was popping popcorn. Hubby thinks cleaner got into the heating element. 🙁 So, let’s hope he gets a call about an interview on Monday.

    Have a good night!!!!

  2. this is your subconscious.

    -stay in vancouver-

    you may now return to your normal brain activity.

  3. Hey Joe. I have a question if you don’t mind.

    Do the few extra “goodies” that will come along with more SGU have to do with SGA and SG-1, and are they still on the table despite the erie lack of news.

    Really excited about the transporter season by the way. Im so sad to see stargate (possibly) go this spring. THis is why im so naggy about news. 🙁 I really don’t even watch TV much anymore. Now that SGU is gone I have less and less reason to watch TV. It’s just not fun anymore. I REALLY hope Brad succeeds. 🙂

  4. Hey Joe,

    It is always fun to see your pictures. On the show..what we see is usually gone in a flash..it is fun to see all the detail. I am very happy that Syfy moved up the air date. Next week can’t come soon enough. I have my trusty VHS tapes ready to record the final episodes. Dark ages I know…but they still do a great job. They’ll hold me over till the DVD sets are released.

    I also ♥ஜ☆LOVE♥ஜ☆ that you are such a good Daddy! Do you have a family portrait to share? Would love to see you all together.

    Best to you Joe,
    Cheryl 🙂

  5. Thanks for answering my question, and to Akemi for being a sport about the post. It really was one of the funniest in a while, but I don’t want her to think anyone is laughing at her.
    The charter idea does offer a lot of pluses. And think about it. Do you want to be in a plane with dozens, or hundreds, of other people when the plane has an emergency, and have to fight your way out of the plane while gathering up the dogs, or have to deal only with you, the dogs, and any favored travelling companions? And think of all the dangers you are literally flying over and around by using air travel. Not to mention checking in and out of the airport a whole lot better. Damn, now you’re convincing ME to start looking into charter flights for my journeys…
    thanks for the pics. One of the things I’m going to miss about your SG stint is the photos from work. Though with the crew you’re moving to work with, that might not be as painful as I’d expect. Do hope you enjoy the weekend and the final rounds of eating out. Hope the local chefs do right by you for your years of patronage.

  6. Thanks a lot for the SGU update. Nice to see it is at least #2 and not a #3. Also thanks a bunch for that totally cool Youtube link. I downloaded that video & have watched it…, well, soooo many times. It is also my favorite song now too, lots of laughs

    If there is some sort of SGU continuation, MGM should really use that fan video to advertise it. Use it to advertise the SGU dvd’s for sale also.

  7. i went to WD-50 today. had the tasting menu. two of the eight savory courses were misses for me, but the other 6 were awesome.

  8. Just watched the SGU pilot on Blu-ray. The picture is really amazing!
    Question for the mailbag: when you started SGU, did you already have an ending in mind (was there honestly even one ?). You had in mind how many seasons it would last when you produced the pilot ? Thx

  9. Akemi, thanks for letting Joe share with us…from here on in “peasnatch” will replace the far less interesting spinach…loved it!

    Now, if you could please come up with a better name for brussel sprouts that will make them more palatable.

    Last night’s post will go into the ‘favourites vault’.

  10. Come to think of it, the person I was talking about did leave Vancouver on a free, one-way bus ticket just before the Olympics. Long story, but, by that point, where the money for the bus ticket came from wasn’t foremost on our minds.

  11. Since the sets are still standing can you FILM a 48-hour special season 2 FINALE?

    Like smallville is getting a 2hour finale and SGU is more epic so a 48hour FINALE only makes sense no?

    This would equal 48episodes worth. I am sure the last three seasons 60 episodes can be squeezed into that time frame if you take out the season filler eps.

    I am sure there is a loophole somewhere to get away with it and I know Brad would be up to the task haha.

  12. Here’s an option you might not have considered…

    Charter your own bus.

    Yes, it still involves a long drive, but, you won’t have to do the driving.

    Plus you don’t have to contend with the high probability that you’d fall victim to a celebrity/famous people private plane accident (For additional info, wiki the following. Lynyrd Skynyrd, Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, J.P Richardson, the Reba McEntire Band, National Assembly of the Republic of Poland, Manchester United 1958, Ricky Nelson, John Denver, Otis Redding, Aaliyah, Patsy Cline). I could name more but you get the point I think…private planes are a celebrity deathtrap.

    You could also take a fair bit of stuff with you that wouldn’t be practical to take on a plane, and too much of a pain in the ass to leave in Vancouver after living in a house for so many years.

    When the bus stops for rest stops, you can still let the dogs out ‘plus’ you can have fun playing a mainstream famous person (you’re already famous to ‘us’). The sight of a single person and their dogs getting off a bus with no other passengers is sure to get you noticed and photographed by people wondering..who’s the famous person in town?

    You could get hammered on the bus if you wanted. You could have your own private little party and your own private bathroom.

    Just a thought…

  13. @Mr M

    You should seriously consider the private charter jet. You could bypass Pearson International for Toronto Island airport. IIRC private charter jets are much more safer than your average Turbo-prop/Regional Jet short haul flight in most stats.

    Moving the kids on the ground is ok if you think they could be on the road for about half week dodging the occasional winter storms.

  14. Holy crap! SGU is starting sooner than I thought.

    *Sigh* the beginning of the end. Still beats most of TV though. I think the last episode will probably see me throwing stuff at the TV in frustration at the fact that there won’t be a conclusion for the cliffhanger.

    In the meantime, that pic with the white rectangles on it is certainly intriguing. Stasis pods anyone? 😉

    Thanks for the pics!

    Anyways, yeah, heard about the snow back in Vancouver. Not sure if that’s worse than the torrential downpour that hit the LA region in the last few days. I think I must’ve brought the rain with me down here!

  15. Thanks for those suggestions, Joe! Not sure I’ll get to all those places but I’ll definitely try some of them out. If you want to see s ow you should come over here to New Brunswick! We just got another 20cm of heavy snow on Friday. I have snow walls on the side of my driveway almost taller than me now!!

    Interesting point about the lighting on the sets. I would never have thought of that but it makes sense.

  16. i think MGM is keeping the sets for a future movie/tv show alright but nothing to do with stargate. All it takes is a little bit of remodeling.

  17. Hey Joe.

    If by some Miracle or Act of God SGU returns to television, Is there any possibility of you doing LONG distance script writting? As in, submitting the occassional script and trusting the faithful greyhound-looking Carl or Brad to make it right.

    Stargate just wouldn’t be Stargate without yours and Pauls Awesome 2 and 3 parters.

  18. If SGU is able to continue in some form, will you help in anyway even though you will be onto other work? maybe be a creative consultant or something like that? or are you pretty much done with stargate?

    But if you are done with stargate, and down the line they are able to begin production on the SGA movie, wouldnt you have to be involved with that since you and paul wrote the script? or would you not have any involvement there either? im just curious how that works out for you.

  19. Hi Joe, I was wondering when you’d go back to chartering a flight after I read that the 22 lb limit included the carrier. Most carriers weigh between 6 and 19 lb (even the soft-sided ones), so either you switch to Yorkshire Terriers or starve the puggles. 🙂

  20. Out of all the people you know, Joe, no one has their own plane and flies for fun? Or, is it that you just wouldn’t trust them to take you and dogs that far?

    Very excited for the return of SGU. I’m glad they decided to put it on in March instead of April and that they aren’t pulling a Caprica, like airing it 5 hours, but for SGU airing that over a period of 2 nights.

  21. One series I’d recommend is Booster Gold. I was reading them at my brother in laws and they’re actually not bad. Some of the stories involve booster gold going back in time to alter major events that happened. One example is trying to prevent Barbara Gordon from being paralyzed by the Joker. It gets pretty crazy.

    One story he went back to investigate something and indavertantly changes history so that Batman never rises. Then he returns to fix it and has to knock himself out while dressed as Elvis 😛

  22. So, I made a little something for the recent shuttle launch:

    [vimeo 20428466 w=400 h=300]The Final Flight of Space Shuttle Discovery from Peter Gao on Vimeo.

    It’s the last flight of shuttle Discovery, and the beginning of the end of the Shuttle Era. After this, Endeavor will fly and then retire, and hopefully after that, Atlantis will do the same, though the funding for that last mission seems to be onhold or something.

    All good things must come to end, I guess.

  23. I’m really looking forward to SGU’s second half. I’m keeping my hopes up for Brad to work his magic. I just can’t imagine the franchise being put out to pasture. I think it’s still hugely lucrative, and MGM would be foolish to let it go.

    So sad to see you leaving The Bridge. But hopefully not forever. And you’re right about the VFX building. That thing is a seismic menace. It’s typical of most of the buildings I saw collapsed in New Zealand. At least Toronto will be quake free, mostly.

    I went to fill the tank yesterday. The station was in our local foothills and jammed even though prices were painfully over four bucks a gallon. But everyone was smiling, giving thumbs up and woohooing. Why? Because it was fricking SNOWING! Real snow, not graubel or fluffy hail as some people thought. For people back east who think it’s nuts, it was equal to having an 80 degree day in February. Snow is just so rare here. It was awesome!

    And equally awesome will be finally learning what the heck you’re working on.

  24. @KevinInNS:

    Plus you don’t have to contend with the high probability that you’d fall victim to a celebrity/famous people private plane accident

    Hope this doesn’t offend, but as a Private Pilot (Single Engine Land), I hear this all the time. “You fly small airplanes? OMG! You’re gonna die!”

    Admittedly, fatal accident rates among General Aviation pilots are equivalent to Motorcycle accident rates (per seat hour), but Commercial/Charter accident rates are much lower and in comparison the rate for Buses is about 2.5 times higher:

    Although the death rate is only half that of passenger cars, it is about four times that of passenger trains and 25 times that of commercial airliners.


    The fatal accident rate for Charter Air Service is about 10 times higher than Commercial, but it is still lower than the Car or Bus fatality rate. See:


    (Charter appears as “On-demand”…look at “Accidents per 100,000 Flight Hours” under the fatal column.)

    And (hoping that Joe is not afraid to travel after all of this) here is a quick list of celebrities who died in car/motorcycle/bus accidents:

    T. E. Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia)
    Blues Singer Bessie Smith
    Actor James Dean
    Actress Jayne Mansfield
    Baseball player Billy Martin
    General George Patton
    Musician Eddie Cochran
    Author Nathanael West
    Comedian Ernie Kovacs
    Berry Oakley bass guitar player for the Allman Brothers Band
    Tommy Caldwell bass guitar player for the Marshall Tucker Band
    Comedian Steve Allen
    Duane Allman of the Allman Brothers
    Metallica bass player Cliff Burton
    Actress Janet Gaynor
    Princess Grace Kelly
    Princess Diana of Wales
    Comedian Robert Schimmel
    Country singer Dottie West
    Glen Glenn founder of Glen Glenn Sound
    Tennessee sheriff Buford Pusser (Walking Tall)
    LeRoi Moore member of the Dave Matthews Band
    Comedian Sam Kinison
    Cozy Powell drummer of Black Sabbath
    Jackson Pollock Abstract painter
    Actor Trindad Silver (Hill Street Blues)
    Keith Godchaux of the Grateful Dead
    Astronaut Charles “Pete” Conrad
    Dan Cracchiolo producer of “The Matrix” and “Swordfish”
    Science Fiction author Pat York
    Actor Justin Mentell (Boston Legal)

    p.s. – I know the root causes of the John Denver accident quite well; mostly pilot-induced complacency. It’s a good reminder to me when I pre-flight.

  25. Joe, I should also say I’m looking forward to the second-half of season two and waiting to hear what show you’re working on now.

    Will we know this year or next?

  26. Bus sounds good, Joe… and think of all the perogies you could taste across the middle of Canada!

  27. @pg15 – Thank you, it’s beautiful, and the music is perfect.

    I remember the first shuttle launches, even the Enterprise that was launched from the back of a plane to test that landing such a craft was possible… it will be strange to see the shuttle flights end, but I hope to live to see what the next steps will be. There have to be next steps, surely we’re too curious a species to decide to go no further!

  28. @BMc:

    it will be strange to see the shuttle flights end, but I hope to live to see what the next steps will be.

    That next step was supposed to be the Constellation Program, but that was effectively canceled last October by President Obama. Now we have…nothing. 🙁

    Guess we can at least go watch Delta-IV Satellite launches…

  29. @PG15:

    Cool Video!

    It reminded me of some of the animations Carl “Billyuns and Billyuns” Sagan used to do on “Cosmos”. 😉


  30. Re: vegas


    If you had to bring a friend to a buffet in Vegas, which one would be the best of the bunch?

  31. Watching a very, very long Oscar telecast. I’ve live blogged it, chatted with my sis about it, Skyped my brother about it and yet it hasn’t ended. I’m packing it in soon and will find out who won the big awards tomorrow.

    Been making tasty sandwiches with my grilled chicken tenders cut up with a bit of mustard, some fresh slaw and gouda on buttered low-cal toast; crazy tasty.

    I’m liking the charter plane idea in theory; it’s very Inception. Puts so much less stress on the pups. Sounds like a fun adventure.

    Okay I’m getting annoyed with Anne Hathaway for her constant Oscar dress changes; one per commercial?? Seriously? I can’t imagine changing dresses what, twelve to fifteen times in one night? Nutty.

  32. @pg15 Statis Pods is exactly what I think I see there…
    Are we on the right track Joe ?

    Mailbag Question:
    I noticed that you have said several times when SGU will be airing in Canada next tuesday.
    I find it funny that you have not mentioned that it will be on SYFY on Monday March 7 every monday night at 10:00 pm and then at 12 midnight.
    I bet you must be a bit upset with SYFY at the moment.

  33. @hal ehrlich:

    I think it’s Joe’s subtle way of giving Syfy the finger

    Saw what you did there Joe, Made me laugh!

  34. another option btw is dog transport companies. I could recommend a couple here in the US that friends have used, but not Canada. Though I guess you could drive to border for pick up and meet at border for delivery.

    Leora said you could also pay someone to drive them, which I hadn’t thought of but really… someone may be happy to travel at your expense and bring them. 🙂

  35. Stargate… i’m not to old, 18 & ever since i could remember it’s been a part of my life, my dad is a huge fan & he’s been watching stargate right off the bat… he’s baught all the DVD box set’s for SG1 & SGA, i can’t tell u how many hour’s i’v spent with my dad watching the old eps over & over… somehow it didn’t matter to him that he’d seen it all before, to me it was good just spending time with the old man

    i just wish there was someway to keep SGU alive in some small way so that maybe someday when somebody has enough cash maybe stargate will have a chance to give me the opportunity to enjoy it with my kid’s… i know it’s sappy & a childish thought but it’s just a wish i’m making to the only person i know who can really fight for the show, the one person i think might be able to keep that hope for the show alive

    even if u can’t save it, i thank u for trying 🙂

  36. Right now I am not really looking forward to SGU continuing. Don’t get me wrong here, I LOVE SGU. I just can’t stand the though of being left in the middle of it all with no conclusion, so each episode would hurt even more. Ending a great show on a cliffhanger REALLY hurts. It’s a really sad thought that after all these years there might be no more Stargate to look forward to.
    First Star Trek. Now Stargate. I hope if and when Stargate comes back it will still be based on the shows we love and not a reboot like Star Trek. (Not that it was a bad movie it just kind of negated the Trek-Universe I loved…)

    Which brings me to a little question for you, Mr. Mallozzi. Star Trek made a big mistake in bringing back Voyager at the end of Star Trek Voyager with all that future technology and stuff they picked up in the Delta Quadrant as Starfleet would most certainly be able to make full use of that technology and take almost all the adventure out of Trek a couple of years later. Which might explain why they did a prequel show after that.

    Funny but with Stargate SG-1’s finale you made exactly the same mistake by giving Earth all the knowledge of the Asgard. Give them a few years and you would have a hard time explaining why Earth can still be technologically behind anybody at all. But the part that really shocked me is that you virtually wiped out the beloved Asgard in a single blow and not even in a big story but in something that was a mere footnote and was absolutely unnecessary for the story of that episode and it looked like you wanted to force the asgard storyline to a definite end.

    So my question is: Why did you decide to wipe them out? Didn’t everybody like them? Couldn’t you have used the Furlings for that like a crazy homage to 200? (That was really funny!)
    If you where at that point in time again and you had to make that decision alone: Would you still wipe out the Asgard?

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