September 12, 2015: Dark Matter Executive Producer Vanessa Piazza!  More Of Your Burning Questions Answered!
Executive Producer Vanessa Piazza on set with Consulting Producer Ivon Bartok.

One of the questions I get asked a lot is: “What does a producer do?”.  The answer is: “It depends.”  Some producers oversee scripts and various other creative aspects of production, from casting to costumes.  Other producers oversee the numbers, things like scheduling and budgeting.  Still other producers deal with the broadcasters, agents, and lawyers.  And then there are those producers who do much of the heavy lifting before the show even gets on the air, selling the series and closing the deals that get it that first season green light.

Usually it’s one or the other.  Or the other.  Or, the other.  In the case of Dark Matter Executive Producer Vanessa Piazza, it’s all of the above.  She was instrumental in getting the show picked up and since then, through pre, production, and post, has been HEAVILY involved in everything from casting and production design to mixes, music, and marketing.

Yes, Vanessa not only does it all – but does it all really, really well.  So it should come as no surprise that she was recently recognized for her incredible talents.

The hottest Canadian talent you’ve never heard of [unless you read this blog on a regular basis] but will:

I’m a fan!

Let’s get to more of your questions…

lewis writes: “If Dark Horse decides to do another limited series comic of Dark Matter would you & Paul write a whole new story line with our favorite space faring crew or use some of the tv scripts? Also, illustration wise would you use the look of the crew from the original comic series or incorporate the look of the actors?”

Answer: I hadn’t even considered the scenario.  In a best case scenario, five years from now after the show has run its course, Paul and I would be free to write the unseen adventures of the Raza crew (the ones we’ll get to know over the course of the show’s run.

Randomness writes: “1) Will the Android take on more human traits as the show goes on? You know, like aspiring to be more than just a regular Android and maybe, you know, be more human like?”

Answer: It’s possible.  I don’t want to give too much away, but we do have a significant story arc planned for everyone’s favorite Android in season 2.

2) Any plans to do an episode based around any spatial anomalies, like say something that makes time go all funky aboard the ship or something? could be fun!

Answer: Yep, could be a lot of fun.  Let’s find out when Episode 207 airs.

3) How do you feel about alternate universes with relation to the show?

Answer: Pretty good.  Pretty damn good.

4) Can we expect any more revelations regarding Derrick Moss?

Answer: Yes, very early on.

5) Now that Six has betrayed the crew, can we expect some heated discussions between him and the remaining crew when everything has settled down?

Answer: Oh, you can bet that any future conversations between SIX and his fellow crew members will be passionate.

6) I’ve wanted to know more about Three prior to the lost memories, will his backstory be touched upon more next season?

Answer: Yes, we’ll be delving deeper into THREE’s past in season 2.

Drea Crystal writes: ” In the SG series seems most of the very best episodes, resulted from a writing collaborative … So am naturally wondering why the decision to have you each take turns writing individual episodes on your own instead of working together? or at least have you all collaboratively consulting on most of the episodes?”

Answer: On Stargate, even though Paul and I were co-credited though much of the franchise’s run, we actually started writing separately around season 7 of SG-1.  Much like Stargate, Dark Matter is a collaborative effort – but it starts with Paul and I.  In the case of season 1, I had the thirteen stories in mind before we even assembled the room.  Once the show was green lit, my writing partner Paul Mullie, and consulting producer Martin Gero got together and hashed out all the story beats – every moment of every scene of every act in the script.  Paul and I oversaw all the scripts, revising when necessary and, once we were in production, I made necessary changes or, in some cases, additions (many of the FIVE-Android scenes).  Back on Stargate, Bard Wright and Robert Cooper oversaw all the scripts in a similar manner.

9 thoughts on “September 12, 2015: Dark Matter Executive Producer Vanessa Piazza! More of your burning questions answered!

  1. Vanessa does, indeed, appear to rock!

    Are you going to answer any more burning questions? Wait, I guess that’s also a question. Hmm.

  2. Thanks so much for answering all my of questions! Now I’ll be wondering who else from Stargate may pop in, for months on end, because you won’t spoil the surprise – will you?

    Safe move back to Toronto.
    So good to know Lulu is feeling better now too. Good for her!

    And thank you for this wonderful blog, as always.

  3. e scusi signore, Was that a tired typo I detected in your pocket? or were you just fwustered to see me. 😀

    -Thanks for the confirmation of what I’d already surmised. It really truly wasn’t necessary, but very kind of you to offer just the same. xo

  4. TWO mailbags? Thanks! I’m so relieved about Lulu. Thanks again for answering that question.

  5. Oh and thank you on the producer education. Vanessa and Ivon did a great job!

  6. Hi Joe! Hope you are enjoying your Sunday. 🙂

    Q. I’m not sure if someone else asked this already, but are we gonna hear more from Cyrus King in season 2?

    I’d love to get an answer as to who programmed Android pre mid wipe to attack the crew and I don’t think it was Two -considering the clues (thus so far) point to her either having won The RAZA in a poker game and having recruited the outlaw crew or having stolen the RAZA from someone like Cyrus King.

  7. Fab Q&A again

    You’ve answered about Derrick Moss coming back. I was going to ask this too, how did he know to alter his appearance to Jace Corso? He must have had prior knowledge that Corso was a criminal and would be joining the Raza crew? Did he use his wealth to gain information or is Derrick Moss a dodgy businessman?

    You said we’d know more about Titch in S2, didn’t Five say in her dream that when she looked in the mirror she thought it was One but his face was different, then we found out that One was Derrick Moss. So, Titch is One?

    When I’d clocked Six being the traitor, I reckoned contact had to be made early on in the Season for him to be informed of his ‘mission’. In Ep2 at the mining colony, Six was captured by the GA soldier in the Marauder (Six wouldn’t have been paraded in front of the crew for them to surrender, he’d have been held captive or killed – if he wasn’t a GA agent). I believe this was when the GA (probably not the soldier but communication from the cruiser) told him what he was on the Raza to do. Will we see a flashback to show us how Six found out what he was really on the Raza for?

    And why is Six on the Raza? Is it to turn over the crew to the GA , which he has done (perhaps as a deal, Six not going to jail for his part in the massacre) or a bit more? What about another mission, I think Six befriends Five in a deliberate attempt, to find out where she has hidden the key to interdimensional pocket space. We see that Six saves Five from the airlock and is adamant about keeping her on board, as being useful (how could he have known that when all she seemed to be was a stowaway?). Did he also enter her dreamstate to not just save her, but to see if she’d give away the key’s hiding place?

    Will we see all the crew’s stories, in S2 as to how they all eventually end up on board the Raza?
    Who actually owns the Raza?
    Who put the crew together? I can’t quite see an advertisement being placed in an intergalactic newspaper!
    Hoping the slimy Tabor Calchek plays a bigger role! 😊

    I know you won’t be able to give answers to some of my questions because of spoilers but hopefully a few can be answered? I’m thoroughly enjoying theorising the who, what, where and why and especially your interaction on your blog, Joe. Dark Matter – loving it, bring it on!

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