A short blog entry today as I still have to get around to my daily hiragana/katakana exercises (And no, Das, they don’t involve swords). A busy day today on a couple of fronts. First, I made significant progress on the rewrite of the horror script by nailing down Felliniesque birthday party scene. I’m going to make a few trims, add a few more suspenseful beats to the third act, and then I’ll send it Rob Cooper’s way for his assessment after which it’ll be smooooooooth sailing. Finally had that rescheduled (rescheduled) conference call today. There were about twelve participants and I believe I speak for everyone when I say we had a wonderful time. Ultimately, just another step in the process and this entity is one of several possible homes for Dark Matter but, in my mind, the most ideal. Finally, Paul and I (and out agent) convened on one of those show running opportunities. Looks like we’ll be sitting down to a meeting this Friday. We’ll see how it goes.
I leave you with a mailbag:
KevinInNS writes: “Was any thought given to a scene with Eli comprehending that he knew about the Stargate program already? (by way of Wormhole X-treme, putting random facts together etc..) or was a concious decision made not to do this so that new viewers wouldn’t feel they needed to watch the other series as background in order to understand the new show?”
Answer: There wasn’t for the reason you stated. Given the immense amount of backstory and mythology tied into the franchise, we wanted to make the new show as accessible as possible to new viewers. While Wormhole X-Treme would have been an amusing call-back, it would have been an unnecessary (and, for most viewers, annoying) cryptic reference.
Scott Hander writes: “I was telling my wife recently that strangely I was seeing more and more parallels in our society to the conflict between the Ori and the Alterans (imposing religious values vs. logic and science) and I was wondering if when you were writing the Ori story arc that there was any intent to draw comparisons to real-world circumstances in today’s society?”
Answer: Exec. Producer Robert Cooper created the scenario so this a question for him. I know that, simply speaking for myself, any parallels in my scripts were never overtly intention – subconscious, perhaps, but never an attempt at social commentary.
TeesterX writes: “What are your actual plans for Dark Matter? A film or tv series?”
Answer: The plan is to set it up as a television project, probably a television series although the idea of doing it as a mini-series grows more and more attractive to me.
Ponytail writes: “So what’s going on tomorrow? Why the special pistachio chocolates?”
Answer: Akemi never needs a reason to make chocolates. She’s great like that. 🙂
Randomness writes: “Odd question for your next mailbag Joe but was wondering, have you ever considered doing a show like Infinite Ryvius before in TV form?”
Answer: Funny you should mention Infinite Ryvius. It was a property I was aggressively pursuing with some other producers before – like so many other things in this business – interest faded.
Bailey writes: “Do you feel like you’ve been a bit spoiled by your experience with the Stargate franchise? And that you judge every project by those standards? ”
Answer: Yes and absolutely! With all due respect to any production I’ll work on in the future, Stargate was a singular experience that will be impossible to beat.
Sparrow_hawk writes: “Fuzzy Nation – John Scalzi (loved it! You may be noticing a trend here)”
Answer: Yes. Am proud to say I was one of the first to read it. And love it! I told John it would make a great feature.
Patricia Stewart-Bertrand writes: “I have a question for you. What is the difference, if any, between a Producer and a Show Runner?”
Answer: All show runners are producers, but not all producers are show runners. Show runner is exactly what the title suggests – an individual who runs a production. Producer can mean a lot of things, from someone who runs the show to one of the financier’s relatives who had an idea that may or may not have been used.
G-MaN writes: “Have you seen Kevin Smith’s Comic Book Men series on AMC?”
Answer: Only the minute or so recorded from the run-over of Walking Dead. Any good?
gforce writes: “The Amazing Race (what do you think of Brenchel? They’re just as annoying/insane as they were on BB)”
Answer: She strikes me as crazy. Hilariously so.
DP writes: “I wouldn’t assume that for your circles, though, Joe. The word of mouth recommendations in your circles surely involved erudite critique about out how Bridesmaids hits all the right story beats square between the eyes, then mentioning the potty humor.”
Answer: Are you kidding? This is the same circle that is always quoting lines from Team America: World Police.
Yates writes: “Glad you picked up Machine Of Death, my friends David and Ryan put that together. The story of how the book was made and marketed is as interesting as the book itself – it stemmed from a discussion in a webcomic forum five or six years ago, and as just about every publisher turned down the book, they self-published. Relying on their online fanbases and social media, they managed to make the MoD the #1 best-selling book on Amazon the day it was released, even beating out a release that day by Glenn Beck, who them went on to briefly disparage MoD on his talk show later that day. More about: http://machineofdeath.net/”
Answer: Congrats to them. Great story. And, a third of the way through the collection, great stories so far.
Randomness writes: “Hows your Japanese getting along Joe? There are 2 Code Geass movies out in Japan covering the events of each season, called Black Rebelleon and Zero Requiem.”
Answer: My Japanese is coming along…slowly. But watching anime helps. Akemi will no doubt want to check out the movies (she loved the series) but I’ve never been a fan of movies that retread covered territory.
Randomness also writes: “Fate/Zero is out soon in the US, costs several hundred dollars on blu ray, but is a good seriea and will be uncut.”
Answer: Yeah, it piqued my interest while I was in Tokyo – the box set was available in Akihabara. But it wasn’t subtitled so I had to pass. Alas, my Japanese is nowhere near that good.
Elminster writes: “A little windy out your way today?”
Answer: Yeah, we lost power for a few hours. Some are still waiting for theirs to be restored.
Michelle writes: “Just started watching Downton Abbey because I’m sick of hearing about it from my friends. 3 eps in and I’m quite hooked, just like everyone said!”
Answer: Another series I should get around to. It comes highly recommend – from Rob Cooper no less!
DP writes: “Why do the super hero movies have to be so bad? Why couldn’t they just write a good story and film that?”
Answer: It’s annoying when a studio can’t tell a good script from a bad one, but downright alarming when a professional screenwriter can’t either. Sometimes, the individuals involved in a production place greater emphasis on cast, directors, or visual effects and consider the script an after-thought – with predictably disastrous results. And the thing that kills me is that these people never learn their lessons – especially if they luck out and score a box-office smash despite a dreadful script. Also, a lot of the times in situations like these (big budget movies), A LOT of individuals are involved, all with their own ideas of what would make a great script. The problem is when the scriptwriter tries to accommodate every single one.
Kathode writes: “And what the fuck was Faye Dunaway after? And why the fuck did her whole plan depend on first getting a cheesy gardener to fall in love with her?”
Answer: It would appear that male supervillains seek world domination while female supervillains (if you believe this movie) seek the love and validation of a man. Oh, and world domination.
Randomness writes: “If Cookie monster wrote a Stargate script, what would it be about?”
Answer: Don’t know. Maybe we should get him to write some fan fic.
Gina writes: “what gets me is somewhere, at sometime the writer had to go pitch this to the producer AND that the producer said “God that sounds excellent! I have to make this! I’m on board!”
Answer: More than likely it went something like – Writer: “Kara, who happens to be Superman’s cousin, follows the power source that, coincidentally, lands on Earth in the cheese dip of a picnicking wannabe supervillainess. Then, after flying out of cosmic egg as Supergirl, Kara assumes a new identity by walking behind a tree and magically transforming herself into a schoolgirl.” Producer: “That’s ridiculous. Can her alter ego have brown hair?” Writer: “Sure.” Producer: “I love it! Let’s make this movie!”
Line Noise writes: “What’s wrong with you Cookie? This is a great film. Certainly an improvement on the Superman crud that came before it.”
Answer: We, sir, are in violent disagreement. Superman III was dumb and poorly executed, but at least it possessed the semblance of a plot. Supergirl, on the other hand, was horrendously, insultingly terrible. Easily one of the worst big screen features ever produced.
DP writes: “Is Cookie Monster mad at me for not sharing the pain of Supergirl?”
JoeJ writes: “Am I the only getting a bit lost in these reviews? I’d love to partake in this but the reviews themselves are so difficult to read/comprehend!”
Cookie Monster answers: Diffikult? What not to unnerstand? Monster sorry. Nekst time not use so many big words. Not my fault me so elokwent!
Kathode writes: “Even after a day to absorb it, and after reading Line Noise’s spirited defense of Selena as villain, I still don’t get Selena’s plan. She spends the vast majority of the film trying every trick in her bag to get a hapless gardener to fall in love with her […]. She says that somehow this will lead to others loving her (and presumably serving her every villainous whim), but there’s no clear pathway illuminated between getting the gardener to fall for her and getting everyone else to.”
Answer: In the words of Cookie Monster – “Shhhshhhshhhh.”
poundpuppy29 writes: “Joe you are a chicken for not answering my Sheppard question how about my Vala question where was she if she wasn’t in the third movie I know you and Robert Cooper were on the Daniel & Vala side but I don’t know about Brad?”
Answer: I answered where I thought she might be, but I can’t speak for Brad who wrote the script.