It’s been a while.  Let’s hit the mailbag:

Jessica writes: “Your day-to-day schedule is filled to the brim with tasks, work, activities, etc galore. How do you maintain such a strict schedule of managing your time to accomplish everything, including writing this blog?”

Answer: I get asked this question a lot and the honest answer is: “I just find the time to make it work.”  It’s quite amazing how adaptable human beings can be.  It’s hard to believe that, back in the day, Brad, Robert, Carl, Martin, Paul, Alan and I wrote and produced 40 episodes of television (SG1 and SGA) a year for two years.  And yet we managed to get it done.  It’s no different with Dark Matter.  I have a lot on my plate but the reality is that NOT getting it done isn’t an option.  Also, I’ve yet to miss a day of blogging in 10+ years and, in similar fashion, I feel there are a lot of readers out there depending on me.  I can’t let them down!

“Does it come easy for you (as in, natural planner and organizer) or have you disciplined yourself to maintain such a schedule?”

Answer: Having little choice in the matter helps a lot.  At the end of the day, if a script isn’t delivered, issues aren’t addressed, or a deadline missed, I’d have no one to blame but myself.  Which is why I just can’t allow it to happen. I can’t say it’s ever easy – but certainly very fulfilling when it’s all said and done.

maggmayday writes: “Would you ever have a cat?”

Answer: I love cats too but I love dogs more so I’m much more likely to adopt another dog (or two) before I’d get a cat.

TheOtherOne writes: “Who was your favourite teacher at school? Why? And how did they influence your life?”

Answer: My old high school English (and drama) teacher, John Whitman, inspired my passion for literature and help make me a better writer by pointing out some of the narrative techniques I used to fall back on in high school.

“Have you ever written a character with that person in mind?”

Answer: Never a character, but his lessons continue to influence my daily writing.

“Again, at school (either junior or high) … Were you a sporty or booky person or a bit of both?”

Answer: Oh, definitely booky.  As much as I enjoyed watching NFL Sunday football, my sporting ventures were limited to marathon sessions of D&D.

“What sort of friends did you have and do you still have contact with any of them?”

Answer: I’d say my friends were a varied mix back then and I don’t really keep in touch with many.  A couple of notable exceptions, among them my best friend in high school, Cas Anvar, who is presently tearing it up as Alex Kamal on The Expanse.

“Please could you list 5 of your top/favourite films of all time?”

Answer: Aliens, Blade Runner, A Christmas Story, The Princess Bride, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

“Would Akemi like to do a mailbag for us sometime?”

Answer: I asked Akemi.  Her response: “Depends on the questions.”

Alabaster55 writes: “Is there any way you could get your art department to through together a size comparison chart if the ships in Dark Matter?”

Answer: This would be more a request for VFX Supervisor Lawren Bancroft-Wilson.  I’ll ask him.

MaggieL80 writes: “A favorite expression or quote?”

Answer: Smooooooooth sailing!

“A favorite poet?”

Answer: Sorry.

“A favorite poem?”

Answer: Sorry again.

“Favorite vacation spot?”

Answer: Tokyo of course.

“Favorite go to comfort food?”

Answer: Chocolate!

ivonbartokfans writes: “How long did it take Ivon to write the script for 307?”

Answer: I’ll save this question for Ivon’s mailbag.

“Do you think you could foster dogs or would it be too painful to give them up when a forever home was found?”

Answer: We had intended to try fostering but, upon laying eyes on Suji, Akemi reconsidered and suggested we adopt instead.  I’d be happy to foster, but am reluctant to commit for the reasons you outlined.

“How did the cast photoshoot go?”

Answer: From what I hear, Alison Hepburn did a fantastic job running the show.

Tinyiy writes: “How do you audition for dark matter?”

Answer: Have your agent submit you.  We cast everything from recurring to the occasional one-line parts.

Daniel Watson writes: “Did Eli fix his pod and survive the jump?”

Answer: In my mind, yes, Eli did fix his pod and the Destiny crew is still out there, somewhere, safe in stasis.

darkmatter writes: “when are the answers from that Jodelle Ferland q&a gonna be on here?”

Answer: Whenever she finishes them.  We keep her busy on the show so I told her she didn’t have a deadline on turning them around.

Bailey writes: “1. Do you know when the casts’ photoshoot pictures will be out?”

Answer: I imagine the new cast photos should start hitting the internet approximately a month before the season 3 premiere.  Say May or June?

“2. Will you guys be at San Diego Comic Con?”

Answer: I, personally, will not be at San Diego Comic Con but some of the cast certainly will.

ceresis64 writes: “Did my triptych idea for a contest seem feasible?”

Answer: You’ll have to refresh my memory…

“Is 8 March the most popular birth date that members of the cast/crew celebrate together? If not, what date is? And how many celebrate that day?”

Answer: No idea.

“What’s the latest news about your military sci-fi series?”

Answer: No news really.  There was some interest but it would have required us to go into production immediately which, given my present commitments, would have been impossible.

“Would you consider a future contest to make a Season 3 poster?”

Answer: Sure.

Kyle Toth writes: “What is the best way to get a chance to audition for Dark Matter? I know Alex Mallari Jr. attended IMTA; would this be a way to get in front of the right people?”

Answer: As I answered earlier, all you need is an agent who will recommend you for a specific role.  And, no, you don’t have to be a seasoned performer to land an agent.

cat4444 writes: “What does a production do if one of the main cast shows up for work sick? Shooting schedules are set, it’s not as if a main cast member can be replaced, and the rest of the cast getting sick is not a desirable option. So what do you do?”

Answer: Usually, the cast member pushes through.  On rare occasions (It’s only happened once on Dark Matter that I can remember) I will write said cast member out of that day’s scenes and send them home to recuperate.

Jackie May writes: “is the dark matter crew going to dragon con this year….i hope so!”

Answer: I’m not privy to the individual cast members’ convention plans but I’d safe it’s a safe bet that at least some of them will be there.

bolo writes: “Any more romantic interludes for 3?”

Answer: Oh, it’s possible.

“Also any Canadian dates for cast?”

Answer: If you mean a premiere date on Space Channel, not yet!

Sandy writes: “Was it always your plan to kill off One?”

Answer: Even the best-laid plans don’t always come to fruition.  Once you start production, you’re no longer working in a bubble and have to contend with numerous unforeseen developments, surprises, and outside influences that may force a course change.

profmadmax writes: “Who is typically in charge of TV season DVD packaging and title menus artwork?”

Answer: In the case of Dark Matter, it’s Funimation.

“What is your least favorite Stargate SG-1 episode?”

Answer: Emancipation, Hathor, Seth.  Hard to choose.

Do you like series crossover characters like Munch(Homicide,X-Files,Law&Order) & have you ever considered a DM/SG scenario? Is it complicated copyright-wise? For instance, if another show wanted to use a character which you created, is it a simple yes/no from you, or do you forfeit the rights to the production company?”

Answer: As much as I’d love to do a crossover, it would be incredibly complicated and extremely unlikely.  The rights to Stargate and all of its characters rest with MGM.

Sandy writes: “Do you already know if you are guaranteed 5 seasons of Dark Matter? Or is it reviewed yearly despite your 5 year story line?”

Answer: Although I do have a 5 year storyline planned, the fate of the show rests with the broadcasters.  Like most every show out there, we await word of a potential pick-up from the moment our new season premieres.

Tinyiy writes: “Will Dark Matter be at Fan Expo Canada or Toronto comicon?”

Answer: Hmmm.  I’m not sure.  If the show was invited, I’m sure we would arrange for cast members to show.

“Where do you film?”

Answer: Mostly in Etobicoke and Hamilton.

“Have you ever come across the town of Richmond Hill?”

Answer: No.  Would you recommend I visit?

TheOtherOne writes: “Joe, how do you choose the ‘Related’ section to the blog? Sometimes it has very recent blog links and sometimes blog links to the distant past – which are a real treat to read  Thanks for these!”

Answer: They’re automatically generated by the blog.  I’m as surprised as you are.


11 thoughts on “March 19, 2017: Mailbag!

  1. Thanks for the mailbag Joe, always a treat! ‘Smoooooth Sailing’ – that has to be an episode title, maybe an ender. Lastly, it’s so cool that you and Mr. Picardo are pals. I just love him in all of his perfornances.

  2. Joe, FYI, Toronto Comicon 2017 ended today. I understood that DM principal cast appeared at 2015 or 2016 event. Their absence this year was one reason for postponing my trip.

  3. Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions. I really appreciate you taking time out from an obvious grinding schedule and a personal life in recent turmoil to field this recent mailbag.

    I hope Sunday offered a respite from this past week’s sorrow.

    Just mentioning that a few of the actors may be coming back to Dragon Con this year made me all giddy!

  4. That’s sweet that you make time for us! Some days, it’s the highlight of my day. 😉 We all appreciate it! However, with all you’ve been going through, I wouldn’t complain if you had to skip a day or two or even three.

    Love “Expanse”! I’ve noticed Mr. Cas Anvar. He’s good! I’ve been trying to place his accent. It’s an unusual cadence. Can you explain? See, I knew I’d think of a question too late. 🙂

  5. Thank you Joe, for answering our questions.
    Interesting selection of films
    Blade Runner goes without say. A classic!
    Princess Bride … Inconceivable!
    Butch n Sundance – aah, you ol’ romantic!
    (‘fraid I’m not familiar with A Christmas Story 😌 sorry)
    Aliens … Hmm, know that one very well 😉

  6. I foster cats and kittens for our local shelter, and I went in with the same concerns about getting attached. Over the last year, I fostered 3 mothers and their newborn litters plus a few other kittens that came in without mommas. After kitten season, I took on our harder cases (the kitties who are so shy that they have trouble at our adoption fairs). With all those cats, I’ve only had one failure. She was 5 weeks old and needed surgery to amputate her front leg, and I was supposed to foster her until she was old enough to have her surgery. I fell in love and just couldn’t let her go.

    There have been a few others (mostly the hard cases) where it was hard to let them go. I have cried a couple of times as I put a cat in a carrier for his forever home. But the feeling of watching them leave with their new families is amazing. And a little bit addictive.

  7. Thanks for answering our questions Joe. If you do consider fostering again, perhaps you & Akemi would need to just be awesome parents, rather than super awesome ones, as you wouldn’t want them to reject the new home…. or would you hehe?

    Were you for real about an Ivon mailbag or just teasing me? That would be awesome. I miss him on Twitter.

    Cheers, Chev

  8. I admire Joe’s ability to multitask, and I’m betting he gets more done because he didn’t spend 8 hours watching Hotel Belle Sejour this week. I said this would be my year to focus (i.e. curtail the Netflixing) but here it is March and I’m mired in the goings on of Expanse, Humans, Poirot, Iron Fist…!

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