Browder, Shanks Discuss "The Ark of Truth"

Lt. Col. Cameron Mitchell

SCI FI WEEKLY has published an interview with Stargate stars Ben Browder and Michael Shanks about the soon-to-be-released direct-to-DVD movie Stargate: The Ark of Truth, making its world premiere tomorrow, March 11, in North America.

Instead of gaining an eleventh season of Stargate SG-1 to continue the Ori storyline, the movie is meant to wrap it up. Was Browder satisfied? “The question of satisfaction with the wrapping up of the show, I think that lies in the hands of the audience, not with a relative latecomer like myself. There’s so much information, and such a plethora of mythology and storyline within 10 years of Stargate, that I don’t think you can entirely wrap it up [in a single movie], nor do I think is that the intent. So then I guess the question is, does it satisfy the major story arcs of the last couple of seasons of Stargate? I think it does, but nonetheless it’s still a question for the audience. The audience is the most important active ingredient in any story being told.”

Shanks, on the other hand, offered, “It’s almost like you want to take the six episodes or eight episodes of season 10 that were devoted to just the Ori story, and do more of those—just eight hours, a mini-series if you will, of resolving the Ori storyline. After two years of building these guys up, [Ark’s fewer than] two hours seems a really short period of time, a really short-handed way of finishing them off. I would have liked to have seen more—that’s the best way to put it.”

Concerning the development of his character Lt. Col. Cameron Mitchell, Browder said, “I think that after two years, Mitchell is far more comfortable with his position within the course of the team—as he should be. It is a development from the first season, where, in comparison to the rest of the team, he’s quite obviously out of his depth. Yet, theoretically, he’s in a position of responsibility.

“Over the course of the two years and into the movies, I think he’s grown into that position and he’s very comfortable with it. There’s an ease about him as he develops, which is probably more true to the character; it’s just difficult to do that in the very beginning, when you walk in and you’re dealing with what are essentially legendary characters within the mythology of the show. Because if you walk in straight off the streets and you start ordering around these legendary characters, both from an audience perspective and a storytelling perspective, it’s going to ring as false. Or it’s going to ring as hubris. And I don’t think that was ever part of Mitchell’s character.”

Dr. Daniel Jackson

Shanks, who has had the opportunity to develop Dr. Daniel Jackson for over eleven years, told Perenson about some of the things he might have done with the character, but didn’t have the chance to do. “You know, I could find things in his backstory. The more I look at the character and what his backstory is, the character has always been an explorer. In my imagination, he’ll always be that way. He lives out there, traveling among the stars; he’s never going to stop.

“Is there anything I’d have liked to have seen? Hey, Daniel will be going over to Atlantis this year, which I want him to do again. And in my imagination beyond that, he’ll always still be traveling everywhere else. I’ve gotten a lot of chances throughout the show to do many different things with the character, and I love the fact that I don’t have to feel unsatisfied. I can just close my eyes and picture him out there, doing whatever he wants to do—and be satisfied with that.”

To read the full interviews, visit Ben Browder and Michael Shanks find Truth in a new straight-to-DVD Stargate SG-1 movie. There are some spoilers for the movie in the interview, especially where Browder and Shanks discuss specific scenes and turning points for their characters.


4 thoughts on “Browder, Shanks Discuss "The Ark of Truth"”

  1. Great interviews! Is it tomorrow yet?? 🙂 I hope mine arrives on time from Amazon. I can’t wait to see the scenes the guys refer to.

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