Sunday, May 30, 2010

Exclusive Interview: Alan Ball dishes about True Blood and his hopes for Sookie

With the True Blood premiere quickly approaching it's time for some more Alan Ball. Below are exclusive interview extas from my recent interview with the show's creator about True Blood's upcoming third season, the challenges he faces, and what his long term hopes for Sookie are.

If you're looking for some serious spoilers, check out my article in Sci Fi Wire, "9 sizzling True Blood spoilers from creator Alan Ball." However, until you read that, perhaps this less spoilery and more behind the scenes interview will whet your True Blood thirst.

KATHIE: What's been your biggest challenge this season?

ALAN: I think the biggest challenge is keeping each episode exciting and still remaining true and organic to the characters' emotions, 'cause that’s where everything’s got to come from. We’re not a movie. We don’t have a week to shoot one special effect or one stunt, and I think that’s what keeps people coming back is even with all the craziness on the show I think you actually end up caring about these characters and being invested in them. I think it’s walking that line between keeping things exciting and keeping things grounded. Because these episodes are like little movies and so getting everything that we have to get in terms of footage, special effects, prosthetic effects, visuals effects... getting it all done in the amount of time we have allotted for each episode, that is definitely the biggest challenge.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Exclusive Interview: Chris Fedak Versus Chuck's Season 3

I got a chance to talk to executive producer and co-creator Chris Fedak about Chuck's big season finale before it aired. Here's some interview extras with Chris chatting about his and his co-creator Josh Schwartz's initial take on the series, the Chuck and Sarah of it all, and what Fedak's secret plan is when it comes to creating an awesome fourth season.

If you'd like more about Monday's finale, you can check out my interview with Chris which ran in Sci Fi Wire, "10 reasons you MUST watch tonight's Chuck season finale". I got nearly 400 digs on the article, so I'm happy.

In that article, Chris gave us an early spoiler regarding next season, which he would only say, "I'll say this, season four is about family." And since we a glimpse of Chuck's mother's back, I'm guessing that he might be talking about Mama Bartowski.

Here's our conversation after Chris admitted that someone we knew and liked was going to die (which turned out to be Chuck's dad, played by Scott Bakula):

Kathie: Oh, you’re evil.

Chris: Thank you very much. You know, it’s funny. It’s not an interview these days unless someone is actually telling me that I’m evil.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Lost finale will be simulcast round the world

For the first time ever, at least as far as I can remember, an American television show will be simulcast around the world. The 2-1/2 hour Lost finale, "The End," will be shown at the same time in the U.K., Canada, Portugal, Israel, Italy, Spain, and Turkey.

Check out my article in Sci Fi Wire, "ABC's plan to avoid Lost spoilers: Show finale EVERYWHERE". I've got some sneak peeks of the finale there as well.

Chris Fedak Versus the Big Chuck Finale

Just got off the phone with Chris Fedak, one of the creators of NBC's Chuck. He gave me some great stuff, which will be posted on Sci Fi Wire on Monday. Chuck's two-episode season finale airs on Monday at 8 p.m. ET and he promises we haven't seen anything like it.

The previews make it look like the Buy More is going to be blown up, but he wouldn't confirm. More to look forward to on this once I get the interview transcribed and write up the Wire article. Interview extras of interest will be published here.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Jouralistic Rumblings - Leonard Nimoy, new show video clips, Futurama, and sex

It's been one of those weeks. I have five articles up alone today on Sci Fi Wire, and 14 this week with all the network fall presentation news and end of the season stuff. Add to that setting up interviews and such for Sci Fi Magazine... Let's just say my husband's requesting I cut my hours down to 12 a day. I've got one more article to write tonight and then I'm taking tomorrow off! Here's a couple of bits of interest regarding my Sci Fi Wire articles...

Leonard Nimoy retires - In my interview with Leonard Nimoy from a conference call, he talks about his retirement from the business, and at 79-years-old I think he means it this time. He goes into his work on tonight's Fringe finale and why his role as Walter Bishop will be his last.

CW spoils new seasons of Vampire Diaries, Smallville, and Supernatural

The CW announced their schedule for next fall, adding Nikita to Thursdays and bumping Supernatural to Fridays. But the big news is the spoilers. In a surprising move, they announced the direction that The Vampire Diaries, Smallville, and Supernatural are going to go next fall.

To find out more about Nikita and the CW's new schedule click here to read my article on Sci Fi Wire.

Here's the goodies, with quotes from the CW press release, about the new seasons of my three favorite CW shows:

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Journalistic Rumblings - Summer shows, pickups, renewals, cancellations...

It's been one busy week with the network news flying fast and furious, including big pick ups and shocking cancellations...

Upcoming Newish Summer Shows:
NBC: Persons Unknown
ABC: The Gates
Syfy: Haven
Comedy Central: Futurama

Saturday, May 15, 2010

True Blood's Denis O'Hare is the King... the Vampire King of Mississippi that is

To get you all whipped up into a frenzy over the August Sci Fi Magazine and my articles with Rutina Wesley, Alan Ball and Denis O'Hare of True Blood, here's a little treat.

I promised you an interview teaser with True Blood's big bad this season, Denis O'Hare, who is playing Russell Edgington, the Vampire King of Mississippi. He's a truly charming guy, and I could have talked to him all day long.

Most of the following quotes are not in the magazine. Nope, there's a whole bunch of different quotes for the article...

KATHIE: I understand you are going to be a regular on the show.

DENIS: I am. I don’t know what that means in terms how long I’ll be around [laughs]. But you know what, I’m around this year. I’m a regular this year.

Iron Man 2 - Why Robert Downey Jr. should be in all movies

It's just a thought, but wouldn't all movies be better if Robert Downey Jr. was in them? Think about it. Take Robin Hood, if Downey replaced Russell Crowe, he would have made a great Robin Hood. Since the 1938 version, Errol Flynn has never been equaled in the role. But perhaps Robert Downey Jr. could have come close.

And if Downey popped up to do a part in Harry Potter or Twilight, wouldn't it make those movies better. Can't you see Downey as one of Harry Potter's teachers?

Thursday, May 13, 2010

EXCLUSIVE! Sci Fi Magazine's opening True Blood spread

Sigh... True Blood did not make Sci Fi Magazine's front cover of the August issue. At the last minute they decided to go with The Last Airbender. For the Powers That Be its all about what one image will sell the most magazines. It's a fair quest, especially these days when magazines are an endangered species. It is a gamble for them and they're hoping for the kind of sales they got with Avatar.

So TB no cover. But what I do have for you is an exclusive look at the True Blood opening spread (click for a larger view):

Here's a close-up of the first paragraph that's more readable:

The magazine contains two True Blood articles, one with Rutina and one with Denis O'Hare. I also have articles on the upcoming ABC series The Gates (which has vampires, werewolves and other), Matt Smith as Doctor Who, and Warehouse 13. The August issue goes on sale June 1.

Journalistic rumblings - Lost, Happy Town, pickups, etc.

This week in sci-fi entertainment journalism...

Lost - Yep, the series is about to end. Yesterday I interviewed Kenton Duty, who plays the mysterious blonde boy who's given the Locke-ness Monster a warning or two. Well, we found out all about who he is in this week's episode, which I won't spoil if you haven't seen it. Let's just say he plays an important character in his teen years.

Kenton was delightful to talk to, something you don't always get when you're interviewing a young actor. He was very excited by the role and it was his 15th birthday. He talked about having to keep his character's identity secret even from his grandmother, who is a huge Lost fan. Guess what? She found out with the rest of us and only talked to him about 20 minutes before I did. You'll find the interview up later today on Sci Fi Wire, and I'll post interview extras here in a few days.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Why Friday night dramas will soon be a thing of the past

The announcement came and went without a lot of fanfare. In mid-April Syfy announced that it had entered into a multi-year agreement to bring the World Wrestling Entertainment's (WWE) Friday Night SmackDown to the network. Syfy's been airing wrestling on Tuesdays for years now with ratings success, so I really shouldn't be surprised.

What that means for Syfy, a network which built itself around its Friday night original dramas, is that it's giving up on original scripted programming for Fridays. Friday night dramas like Stargate: Universe will move to Tuesdays, where Warehouse 13 and Eureka have had success during the summer months.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Pre-finale fun - Supernatural's bad plan and 2 guys I miss

More leading-up-to-finale fun, with spoilers! It's time for an apocalyptic look at Supernatural...

Supernatural - Does anyone else think Sam's plan to say yes to Lucifer and then jump into a fiery pit of hell to be forever trapped is a good one? Yikes! Now even Dean is saying, "Whatever you want, Sammy." Seriously? What's Sam's exit strategy?

While I agree one life (along with a soul) vs. the entire human race... well, even I can do that math. There's no doubt this season is coming to a head in probably the only way it really could have. There have been some great surprises along the way and I love the addition of the demon Crowley (really somebody needs to give Mark Sheppard, who has done wonderful guest spots on just about every genre series, his own show).

Good news for Chuck! Bad news for Jack Bauer!

If you enjoy NBC's Chuck, you may get to celebrate soon. Several reports have come out that it is likely Chuck will be picked up for a fourth season. You can check out my article in Sci Fi Wire, "'Multiple sources' say Chuck to keep on spying."

Saturday, May 8, 2010

True Blood's Rutina Wesley stakes out Tara, Franklin Mott, and season three

That Alan Ball... lucky for us he knows how to write great characters, and even luckier for us young Rutina Wesley knows how to play a great character when it comes to Tara, the sassy African American BFF of Sookie Stackhouse. I chatted with Rutina about her character and the third season of True Blood for one of two articles on the series in the August issue of Sci Fi Magazine, which will be on the newsstands on June 1 or so. The other article is with Denis O'Hare, and you can check out my interview with him here.

Here's a small bit of my exclusive interview with Rutina, most of which did NOT make the magazine...

KATHIE: Why do you think Tara has managed to get herself into so much trouble in the past?

RUTINA: That darn vulnerability. She’s so vulnerable and naive at times, but I think that’s just ‘cause all she knows is Bon Temps. It's a small town. Even though she’s well read and self-educated, there’s still a lot of things about life experience that Tara just doesn't know. So she’s really getting some life experience (laughs). And she’s gonna go through a lot of different emotions. They’re giving me another incredible journey, and I just can’t wait.

Pre-finale fun - Fringe-tastic Walters and non-musical esctasy

More leading-up-to-finale fun, with spoilers! Let's take a glance at Fringe...

Fringe - I have to admit I found season one of Fringe unfocused and confusing... until the finale. However, this season has been great (Okay, we won't talk about the "musical" episode!), as the storytelling narrowed in on mercury-filled shape-shifting soldiers, a formerly frozen head guy named Newton, and Leonard Nimoy as William Bell.

Fringe has become the true heir to The X-Files legacy, with a vibrant mythology and the Fringe murders expanding past the alternate universe mythology.

Pre-finale fun of The Vampire Diaries - What sucks and what doesn't?

With many shows set to finish their seasons in the next couple of weeks, here's some thoughts on how well some of them are setting up their finales. Let's start with The Vampire Diaries. And seriously folks, if you haven't seen this week's shows there are spoilers ahead...

The Vampire Diaries - With the big finale next week, overall the series has come together pretty well for a first season and embraced its strengths and toned down its weaknesses. (Strengths - vampires; Weaknesses - high school and non-vamp related stories, like anything to do with Matt)

Friday, May 7, 2010

Smallville finale pics - Zod vs. Clark, Oliver vanishes, Tess near death

Smallville fans, want some goodies about the oh, so BIG ninth season finale, which airs on Friday, May 14? Well, here's the CW's official description of the episode, "Salvation," along with some pics...

True Blood's Alan Ball dishes on Lafayette

Here's a teaser with some of my recent interview with True Blood creator and executive producer, Alan Ball, and what he had to say about the new people we'll meet in Lafayette's life in the show's upcoming third season, which premieres on HBO on June 13.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Vampire Diaries - Hot Damon pic + behind the scenes pics

UPDATE: Here's a in front of the camera pic of Damon showing off his chest...

Here's some pics from tonight's Vampire Diaries... but behind the scenes.

Note Damon and Alaric laughing, something the characters don't do much of with each other on the show.

Kat's Loved It or Loathed It - Death, a Tiger, and an Alien Dino

Time to catch up on some of the best and worst of television for the last couple of weeks:

Loved It:
  • Lost - The death of Sayid was expected and he redeemed himself. However, the deaths of Sun and Jin were were not and after the long wait to see them reunited, it's was beautifully done. But the best was when Hurley, Kate and Jack balled their eyes out over the loss of their friends. For a show that embraces the fantastic, the moment felt... real.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Fall in love with NBC's Chuck all over again

I've been loving the reboot of NBC's Chuck with Chuck and Sarah finally getting it on and working as a team. My article in Sci Fi Wire delving into "8 reasons to fall in love with Chuck all over again" has gotten lots of diggs, which always makes me happy.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

TV Goodies - What's coming up in May 2010

I'm running a little late on this one. Mostly May's offering finales, but there's a couple Syfy movies, a second season for BBC America's Ashes to Ashes, and Fox is airing the final episodes of it's cancelled reincarnation series, Past Life.

For more on the season finales, check out my article in Sci Fi Wire, "Your complete guide to Sci-Fi TV season finales".

Here's what you have to look forward to this month:

Wednesday, May 5:

Ghost Hunters (Syfy) 8 p.m. - Season six mid-season final

Saturday, May 8:

Mongolian Death Worm (Syfy) 9 p.m. - Okay, this Syfy original flick is not the classic that Mega Piranha was, but you can't have everything.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

This 'n That

Been away, so it's time to catch up. My articles last week on Sci Fi Wire included a look at NBC's Chuck and the rest of its season via an interview with exec producer Chris Fedak, an interview with actress Lourdes Benedicto who plays Valerie on ABC's V, and an interview with Matt Davis who plays high school teacher Alaric on The Vampire Diaries.

I also covered the cancellation of the syndicated Legend of the Seeker and did my regular column "Everything you need to know about this week's sci-fi TV" (or my sci fi-ish TV guide with video clips on what's coming up for the week).

All that and Vegas too! And no, I didn't win anything (or lose anything for that matter).