Vancouver Con Teaser Pics

Your intrepid Solutions reporter has been on the scene in Vancouver all week for the 2009 Creation Vancouver Stargate Convention. In addition to sampling of of actor pictures below, stay tuned for many filming location images and our usual complete, illustrated con report. All the guests have been wonderful; they’ve kept up with the very long hours even better than some fans, who’ve been seen crawling to their rooms to rest or wait out the autograph lines. There hasn’t been major news to come out of the con so far, but plenty of smaller tidbits that we’ll share soon.

The actors have no information about the Stargate Atlantis movie. Hopefully something will be revealed by Brad Wright and Robert C. Cooper tomorrow. Stargate Universe remains strictly under wraps, and the set visit this year did not include any of the SGU ship sets. The Atlantis sets are standing, and the SGC set could be restored with two weeks of work, according to producer N. John Smith.

Click on the thumbnails to see full-sized images!

Flanigan, Hewlett, Picardo, Mallozzi on SGA S5

Season Five of Stargate Atlantis will return to the Sci Fi Channel on November 7, but in the meantime, there are a few interviews you can watch and read in which Atlantis stars Joe Flanigan, David Hewlett, and Robert Picardo and co-showrunner Joseph Mallozzi make observations about what’s going on this season.

WARNING: Those who are adverse to spoilers should probably avoid the rest of this article.

MGM’s Official Stargate website has three video interviews:

Mallozzi’s interview with SFX Magazine has been excerpted in an article by David Bentley for the Coventry Telegraph in which the executive producer reveals that there will be “love, loss, betrayal, revenge, secrets revealed, exhilarating victories and crushing defeats”—and a “significant character death”—this season!

Sheppard's a "Regular Guy in Extraordinary Circumstances"

Sheppard in Action
John Sheppard, a “regular guy in extraordinary circumstances”

Cinema Spy has an exclusive four-page interview with Joe Flanigan (conducted in May) in which the actor discusses some of the focus of Season Five and why he believes the show is as successful as it is. “The show is successful because of the chemistry of characters and because I don’t think the show takes itself too seriously. I think that’s really important.”

Flanigan decided early on not to make Lt. Col. John Sheppard a polished fighter, but to give him a “Harrison Ford” type of approach to action. “I think the character is more regular guy in extraordinary circumstances who just feels like he’s flying by the seat of his pants and he’ll be lucky if he pulls this thing off. As opposed to that [martial artist] guy. It’s fun to have those characters on the show, but I just thought my character is not going to be like that. Chances are in his off time he won’t be sparring, he’ll be drinking beer. … Or playing golf.”

Visit Cinama Spy: Exclusive Interview: Joe Flanigan to learn more about Flanigan, his view of the show, his love of action shows, and his hatred of reality shows that feature people who scare him. (Flanigan does his best not to spill a lot of spoilers, but there are still some little plot points about the upcoming episodes “The Shrine” and “The Queen”.)

[Image from MGM Official Stargate website.]

Stargate Hits Big at Comic Con

Another San Diego Comic Con, another huge suite of Stargate events! This year was especially big for Stargate in that Richard Dean Anderson attended for the first time ever, and there were 3 panels, not two: Stargate Continuum, Stargate Worlds, and Stargate Atlantis. Fans had to arrive by 7:15 am to get the best seats, a mere 3.5 hours before the panels began. By the time they started, over 4000 fans had filled Ballroom 20 once again.

Stargate Continuum

Brad Wright moderated the Continuum panel, and it was a rousing and fun affair. In attendance, in order of assigned seating, were Richard Dean Anderson, Amanda Tapping, Director Martin Wood, Michael Shanks, Ben Browder, Chris Judge, and Beau Bridges. It was lovely to note Wright introduced RDA as perhaps his closest friend, and Michael Shanks as personally his favorite actor in the world. RDA didn’t seem nervous at all and in fact seemed to behave exactly as “Jack”, playing dumb and not taking anything the least bit seriously. He was a hoot. It should also be noted that Ben Browder kissed Michael on the lips as he joined him on stage. Michael seemed to take this in stride.

The main news for SG-1 is that both a third movie and Stargate Universe are in development. That doesn’t mean either one has been green-lighted, but MGM has authorized Wright to work on them, especially the third movie. Note this differs from previous stories saying there would either be two more SG1 movies OR Stargate Universe, but not both. Perhaps it will be one of each. In any case Brad is starting to work on a story for the third movie.

Some outlets are reporting this last as major news, but the certainty doesn’t seem to be any more or less definite than it has been for 6 months now. Hmm.

Brad introduced a lovely tribute to Don S Davis. It showed clips of General Hammond talking about what his people and his position as General mean to him, and it was set to Joel Goldsmith’s score from Continuum. When the lights came up after the tribute, all the panelists were clearly moved to tears. RDA got things back on track with a whacky joke.

The panelists looked healthy and happy, in particular Beau Bridges who looks much younger with longer hair! Everyone has been keeping busy, most with acting and Ben with coaching high school pole vaulting this spring, and football coming up. He’s auditioning and writing, however. Chris Judge mentioned he was supposed to be a villain on the upcoming season of 24 but was “fired” for not being black enough, which seemed to refer to him not looking like he’s from Africa. That got a good laugh.

Everyone was excited by the premiere of Continuum with a few hundred fans on the deck of the US carrier Midway the night before. They are very proud of the film and what it represented, the chance to go to the Arctic and then work together again even after SG-1 was canceled. Several of the panelists talked about what a great experience it was working together over the years.

RDA didn’t do well with questions like “favorite episode” or “hardest episode”. He passed on hardest emotional scene, but then called the panel back to him to say it was when O’Neill dealt with the death of his son (“Cold Lazarus”). He said the kid died, how could there not be emotion? Otherwise he admitted he doesn’t remember what he filmed. But his favorite part of Continuum was filming in the Arctic, and his favorite part of that was that the toilet seats were frosted with ice and that his poop would freeze solid.

Stargate Worlds

The Stargate Worlds panel was next, hosted by the Cheyenne Mountain guys. Brad Wright participated too. I don’t pretend to understand all the lingo, like PvP, PvE, spawning, or arenas versus battlefields. What I got out of the panel very strongly was that the creators are really trying to make the game accessible to all Stargate fans regardless of previous gaming experience. There will be many modes of play from solo to team, from fighting to physics to archeology. There will be social networking aspects as well. Reviewers have said the game is like the 4th generation of on-line role-playing games, and goes beyond World of Warcraft in that it takes the social networking to the next level.

The game will be set right before Season 9, and those events had all taken place in the universe of the game. Playing the game will have the elements of an episode. The SG-1 characters will be there as mentors and gift givers to the player characters. The panelists mentioned having voiceovers, and I asked one of the guys afterward what this meant. He confirmed they will record the actors’ voices for the game! He said everyone has signed on, except that RDA might need some further convincing. This is new information to many of us and very welcome!

They confirmed the game is for Windows only now but expressed sympathy for Mac users and some hope that there could be a Mac version some day.

Stargate Worlds encourages fans to sign up to be beta testers and help stress the game. Their current projected release date for the game is “early 2009”.

Stargate Worlds is clearly a huge part of the franchise strategy this year. They have lots of bling, from tee-shirts to dog tags, and are key to the Stargate booth, which appears to be sponsored by MGM and Stargate Worlds. Oh, and some of the buses are painted with SG Worlds. I sense a pattern emerging.

Stargate Atlantis

The Atlantis panel was smaller in terms of panelists, with Martin Gero presiding and Joe Flanigan, Bob Picardo, Jewel Staite, and Sci Fi VP Chris Sanagustin on the panel. Martin Gero was especially pithy and quick-witted and added much humor to the affair. All the actors were in fine form and very positive about the show.

Answering about the future of the show on Sci Fi, Chris Sanagustin assured the audience that Atlantis will continue, if not as a series than in TV movies. This seemed a very diplomatic answer and did not exactly impart warm fuzzies about the prospect for a 6th season of Atlantis.

In a hint of a spoiler, Jewel Staite said her wish for Keller this season is to make a choice, and she does. I assume this refers to the Keller/McKay/Ronon love triangle, and based on other spoilers, it seems her choice will be McKay. But, that’s just speculation.

Beyond that, Robert Picardo expressed how much he enjoys the humrous aspect of Stargate and the way it sort of winks at the audience, in contrast to the seriousness of Star Trek. He said he feels a bit like he’s been let out of prison.

Joe Flanigan spoke about “Search and Rescue” being a difficult episode for him to shoot because they’d just come back from hiatus and also because he had a personal issue going on during filming [a/n: he might have been speaking about the death of his father, which occurred at the end of February.] He said when it happened, he went right back to work because that’s exactly where he wanted to be, with his friends and colleagues on set. He has moments of intense gratitude for getting to do this work that millions of people wish they could be doing.

Jewel noted that her character gets kidnapped in the woods many times. Martin pointed out that since they film in Vancouver, it’s hard for them to kidnap you anywhere else but the woods.

Everyone on the panel seems very excited about the upcoming Season 5 episode “The Shrine,” penned by Brad Wright. There are insights into Woolsey. Brad Wright’s favorite moment of the season so far is a scene between Sheppard and McKay in The Shrine, on a pier at night. The slashers in the audience cheered the implications of that one.

These are just some highlights of course. Check back for a more detailed report, or since video taping was allowed, it’s likely the panels will be on MGM, Sci Fi, and/or YouTube. We will be uploading a more complete gallery in the next few days, including close-ups from the autograph sessions!

Flanigan to Guest on E!'s Chelsea Lately Show (Updated)

Joe Flanigan as Lt. Col. John Sheppard

Check your local listings for the Chelsea Lately show on E! for Stargate Atlantis star Joe Flanigan’s appearance. The show is described on its homepage: “E!’s late-night half-hour sensation Chelsea Lately features quick-witted commentary and a refreshing pop-culture perspective from comedian, TV personality and author Chelsea Handler.”

Flanigan’s schedule is provided on the show’s episodes page as follows:

Monday, Jul 14
11:30 pm – Tonight Chelsea welcomes actor Joe Flanigan (Stargate Atlantis).

Tuesday, Jul 15
2:30 am – Tonight Chelsea welcomes actor Joe Flanigan (Stargate Atlantis).

6:30 pm – Tonight Chelsea welcomes actor Joe Flanigan (Stargate Atlantis).

Times above are Eastern. Please check your local listings for your time and channel.

ETA: The Interview

SGA S5 to Start Shooting February 19

Listed under “TV Pilots” at the BC Film Commission website, Stargate Atlantis is documented by the Commission to begin its filming of its fifth season on February 19, 2008, and complete it on September 23, 2008:

Pegasus Productions V Inc.
Exec. Prod: Joseph Mallozzi, Paul Mullie, John Smith
Prod: John Lenic
DOP: Michael Blundell, Jim Menard
PD: James Robbins
PM: John Lenic
PC: David Magee
LM: Lorne Davidson
ALM: Dominic Main
Publicist: Brigitte Prochaska
Cast: Joe Flannigan, Jason Mamoa, Ish Kabibble
SPFX Coord: Wray Douglas
Casting: Corinne Clark, Jennifer Page
Extras: Sandra Couldwell
Sched: Feb 19/08 – Sep 23/08
2400 Boundary Rd.
Burnaby, BCV5M 3Z3
TEL: 292-8500
FAX: 292-8550

Interestingly enough, “Ish Kabibble” is listed as a cast member, perhaps because the actual cast members for the new season have not yet been officially announced (note that Joe Flanigan’s and Jason Momoa’s names appear in the list, but are misspelled). Fans corresponding directly with executive producer and co-showrunner Joseph Mallozzi in his personal blog have been told that an official announcement is to be issued by the SCI FI Channel, rather than from him directly.

Joe Flanigan stated at his Burbank Creation Con appearance that he had signed up for Season Five, and Mallozzi has discussed continuity issues concerning Jason Momoa‘s hair after Momoa had a major haircut. Mallozzi also confirmed that Rachel Luttrell will be returning for Season Five, and Jewel Staite has mentioned returning to the sets in her personal blog, but hasn’t revealed for which or for how many episodes. And as for how Flanigan and David Hewlett will appear after seeing that they both were sporting beards for the People’s Choice Awards acceptance video, Mallozzi said, “The boys will be beardless for the start of the new season.”

This leaves the status of Paul McGillion (Dr. Carson Beckett), Torri Higginson (Elizabeth Weir), and Amanda Tapping (Col. Samantha Carter) still in question. Mallozzi has reassured the Save Carson Beckett campaigners that the “door will be left open” for Beckett’s return in Season Five. Additionally, the new Weir-Replicator story arc that was started in Martin Gero’s “Be All My Sins Remember’d” leaves Elizabeth Weir fans wondering if Torri Higginson will be returning to reprise her role. Gero reassured them, “Weir’s storyline will be revisited in season 5.” And as for Carter, Mallozzi has expressed his desire to see Amanda Tapping return for Season Five. It should be noted, however, concerning contract negotiations and writing the new episodes, Mallozzi said, “It’s very rare we’ll write a script without having an actor commit beforehand.”

Join Solutions for production coverage of Season Five, and please continue to visit to keep up with Season Four as new episodes are currently being aired on the Sci Fi Channel on Fridays at 10pm Eastern.

Flanigan Guests on ABC's "Women's Murder Club"

Joe Flanigan as FBI Agent John Ash in ABC

Joe Flanigan (Lt. Col. John Sheppard) filmed at least two episodes of ABC’s Women’s Murder Club before the Writer’s Guild of America went on strike back in November. His first appearance, in episode #9, “To Drag & to Hold”, was a brief one at the tail end of the story, but his second episode, “FBI Guy”, will probably feature him more as he’s playing the title character, FBI Agent John Ash.

Ash is meant to be the new love interest of Lt. Lindsay Boxer (played by Angie Harmon), but Flanigan said that the WGA strike prevented him from filming the episode in which he gets to kiss her. The role was supposed to be recurring and filmed during the seasonal hiatus so as not to interfere with his shooting new episodes of Stargate Atlantis in Vancouver. Flanigan reported at the recently-held Creation Con in Burbank, however, that Women’s Murder Club is now shut down and the crew is out of work due to the strike.

Flanigan didn’t mention which episodes he had filmed, so fans could only catch him if they watched the show in anticipation of his first appearance. “To Drag & to Hold” was shown on December 7, 2007, at 9pm Eastern on ABC. (Here’s a YouTube clip of his scene.) There was a break in new episodes, and now, fans can catch him this coming Friday, January 4, at 9:02pm Eastern on ABC in “FBI Guy” (this episode is the show’s first season finale). Please note this unusual starting time — 9:02pm.

The mid-season premiere of Stargate Atlantis, “Be All My Sins Remember’d” (spoilers), will also be showing the same night on the Sci Fi Channel at 10pm Eastern. Since there might be a two-minute overlap in the times, those watching and recording may need to prepare early for what they plan to do to support both programs. Sci Fi will show a repeat of the Atlantis episode at midnight.

SGA S4 Filming Wraps, Actors Find Projects

SGA Season Four Cast
Cast of Season Four of Stargate Atlantis


It might seem a bit strange talking about the end of Season Four’s filming just as the episodes are starting to make their world premieres on the Sci Fi Channel, but it’s that time of year once again! Word still hasn’t come from Sci Fi about renewal for a fifth season, though, so whether or not the fond farewells the cast and crew bid each other on Friday, October 5, were to mark the end of a season of filming or the series as a whole remains to be seen. Executive producer and co-showrunner Joseph Mallozzi, looking back over the season’s development, stated in his personal blog, “I’m extremely satisfied with the end-product, and extremely satisfied with all of the hard work put in by the cast, crew, writers – pretty much everyone who stepped up and helped make this such a terrific year.”

As far as what everyone will be doing over the hiatus (the time between filming the seasons), here’s a quick run-down from what we’ve been able to gather from the Internet. If there are more, please add to them in the comment section for this blog entry. 🙂

Joseph Mallozzi

Season Four was the first for Joseph Mallozzi and long-time writing partner Paul Mullie as showrunners for the show. Since Mallozzi has been keeping his personal blog for about a year now, fans have had an exceptional peek into what goes behind such a position. It’s apparent from Mallozzi’s entries that he has many interests, including trying out various restaurants and reading science fiction novels. Concerning how he’ll be spending his time off, Mallozzi wrote, “Well, it really depends. If the show doesn’t get picked up, I’ll probably be working on pilot scripts are heading down to L.A. for meetings. If the show does get picked up, then we’ll be spinning stories and heading off to write – over the hiatus. So, time off in the long-term? No. Time off in the short-term? Sort of. I’m so exhausted that I think I’ll be sleeping straight through next week and well into word on the show’s fate.”

Joe Flanigan

Joe Flanigan will be making some convention appearances this month in Australia (October 13-14) and New Zealand (October 20-22). He revealed at the Comic Con in San Diego earlier this year that MGM has tapped him to star in the remake of the 1991 film Shattered, filming for which was last heard to be starting in November. According to IMDb, the tagline for the 1991 film was “A love he can’t forget. A murder he can’t remember.”

Amanda Tapping

Amanda Tapping has revealed in recent interviews that she’ll be making more webisodes for her on-line serial Sanctuary. She’s working with Stargate veterans Damian Kindler and Martin Wood to create another ten hours of entertainment, which equates to about 40 webisodes. Tapping said in a Sci Fi World interview, “Really, honestly, I just want to get Sanctuary up and going, that’s my main motivation right now.”

Rachel Luttrell

Rachel Luttrell is currently expecting her first child, so right now things are a bit quiet for her as she prepares for this momentous event. Her pregnancy was written into her character Teyla’s story arc for Season Four. Luttrell posted a note to her fans on her official website, “Another season has blown by. And it has been a wonderful one. I will endeavor to attend the party [wrap party held on September 29]…. but my first child may decide to make an appearance at any moment now. Exciting times!”

Jason Momoa

Jason Momoa is a new father! He and partner Lisa Bonet celebrated the birth of daughter Lola Iolani Momoa on July 21. According to one report, Momoa’s mother revealed more about the baby girl: “The middle name means royal hawk, and was chosen as there were hawks flying around [overhead] during the birth. The baby has ‘long legs, lots of black hair, and her lips are the perfect shape.'”

Momoa’s family means a lot to him, as he recently got a large tattoo that represents his family crest on his left forearm that the producers covered for “Adrift” and “Lifeline”, but will reveal in “Reunion”. Momoa gave Flanigan a new guitar at the end of filming for Season Four that is decorated with the same pattern. Fans can see the guitar in a picture Joseph Mallozzi posted in his blog entry for October 1.

David Hewlett

David Hewlett saw his independent film A Dog’s Breakfast distributed on DVD on September 18 (see Solutions Blog story on the release). He’s already working on his next movie’s script, Design of the Dead, which Hewlett talked about in an interview at Eclipse Magazine: “I loved Evil Dead; I loved Fright Night. It’s just that I loved that kind of stuff. And then, strangely, I’m a fan of these Home & Garden kind of home renovation shows. In this bid to become kind of the Martha Stewart of horror, I’ve combined the two. It’s about a design show that goes into this house to give it a new life, and it ends up waking the dead. It’s a lot of fun to write. I’m halfway through it now, so we’ll see how much time I get to sit down and write the rest of it. Right now it’s called Design of the Dead. It just seems in keeping with the Romero films, and the obvious likeness would be Shaun of the Dead, as well. That was sort of an honest appreciation of zombie films — and I just want to make a funny one.”

Hewlett had also said in his blog that he was writing a part in the movie for Christopher Judge.

Hewlett and his partner Jane Loughman are expecting their first child very soon. While waiting, Hewlett quickly noted in his Twitter recently, “Baby really taking its time…going to do this “Helen” movie next week now!” This movie stars Ashley Judd and is scheduled to film from October 9 to December 11 in Vancouver.

Jewel Staite

Jewel Staite recently finished filming some scenes in Panama for her new movie The Tribe. In a recent interview at SCI FI WIRE, Staite revealed a little more about the film: “It’s basically about a girl who starts off as being very meek and kind of subservient and scared about life in general and then really has to step up to the plate and become the leader, become the alpha in the situation. So it was really fun to play. It was a really complex character, and, yeah, it should be coming out next summer.”

In her latest MySpace blog entry, Staite answered a few questions from her fans, one being about the roles she chooses to play: “I love that I get these smart women roles, but it’s also fun to play the helpless victim sometimes, when it’s written well. What’s really great is someone who starts out as helpless and grows into the hero. Or superhero. That flies. And kicks ass.”

Staite is scheduled to appear at the Collectormania 12 Convention in Milton Keynes, England (October 26-28).

Season Four Continues…

Season Four of Stargate Atlantis continues on the Sci Fi Channel on Friday, October 12, at 10pm Eastern, with “Reunion”.

Flanigan Talks About SGA Season Four

Joe Flanigan as Lt. Col. John SheppardJoe Flanigan (Lt. Col. John Sheppard) talked enthusiastically about the upcoming Season Four of Stargate Atlantis as he was visited on the set by Starburst magazine (issue #354, released August 2007) during the fiming of the episode “The Seer”. Not only did he reveal some of the plot points about episodes in the first half of the season, but he also talked about the changes in cast, including the loss of Torri Higginson (Dr. Elizabeth Weir) and Paul McGillion (Dr. Carson Beckett) and the addition of Amanda Tapping (Col. Samantha Carter) and Jewel Staite (Dr. Jennifer Keller). He also raved about Sheppard’s new “difficult to get a handle on” sometimes adversary and sometimes ally Larrin of the Travelers, played by Jill Wagner.

Flanigan makes note of the significance of Season Four as it is the first without sister show Stargate SG-1. “I’d prefer to have SG-1 around just because I think the fans like to have both shows together, but even without SG-1 I think Atlantis will be fine.”

To read the full interview, get your copy of Starburst, issue #354, available since August 29. Visit the Stargate Wiki Season Four index page to find spoilers for each of the episodes, including those given by Flanigan in this interview.

Stargate Atlantis returns with new episodes on the Sci Fi Channel on Friday, September 28, at 10pm Eastern with the premiere of “Adrift”.