My single day off this weekend happened to be the coldest day of the this winter so far. Time to break out the big coat, scarf and, dare I say it, hat!
A BIG week ahead on the Dark Matter front. Production continues on Episode 303 with director Steve DiMarco calling the shots while prep also continues on Episode 305 with director JB Sugar at the helm. Between set, meetings, and writing, I’ll also be working on my producer’s edit for Episodes 301, 302 AND 304. And, of course, that means…episode titles are on the horizon!
As you may or may not know, the readers of this blog got to choose the episode titles for Dark Matter’s second season. And you’ll get to do it again for season 3.
Delving into the mailbag…
katie writes: “Would you be willing to read a spec script and give notes?”
Answer: Between Dark Matter and my work on various other pilots, I unfortunately don’t have much free time to read outside scripts.
livingforcreativity writes: “Do you still have attempts going to get other shows on the air? If so, can you tell us about them?”
Answer: Yes, I have three pilots out, making the rounds. One is a straight, serialized drama, another a supernatural horror, the third that military SF I mentioned a few months back.
“Do you have elevators in your work or residence, and have you had issues?”
“Does Akemi send you a breakfast bento box?”
Answer: More of an early dinner bento…
PBMom writes: “How is your knee?”
Answer: Better, but it does stiffen up at night or when I’m seated for extended periods of time.
Greg Long writes: “A lot of published authors say that to be a good writer you must read a lot. Does this hold true for screen writing?”
Answer: It holds true for me.
“Do you have a checklist for each scene to ensure it fulfills a purpose?”
Answer: Each scene should serve a purpose. If you can remove a scene without it impacting the script, then it never belonged in the script in the first place.
bambamfans writes: “If you create another TV show, who will run Dark Matter?”
Answer: In that best case scenario, I’d oversee both productions.
“What is the theme of Season 3 Dark Matter?”
Answer: The past comes back to haunt.
“Will David Hewlett return as Tabor Calchek?”
Answer: No, he will not.
“Did you return to the same condo in Toronto that you lived in last season?
Answer: Yes. At the end of the day, it’s far from perfect but better than the other options.
“Does Suji prefer the company of humans or dogs?”
Answer: Humans definitely, women in particular, and Akemi specifically.
“What film that you watched as a child had the largest impact on you?”
Answer: Planet of the Apes, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Star Wars.
“Who do you think will win the Superbowl?”
Answer: The Dallas Cowboys.
gforce writes: “How are Lulu’s spinal issues/walking coming along?”
Answer: Hard to say. We’ve noticed that she’s been having trouble lately but we’re not sure whether its a physical issue or the fact that she’s wearing booties.
“Also, are those script rewrites that you needed to do all completed by now?”
Answer: Alas, I’ll be in script rewrite mode until we go to camera on our final episode.
Line Noise writes: “What is the knot you were using for your ties?”
Answer: It’s called a Trinity Knot. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VMnlYXoCOwc
“How much scope does a Dark Matter writer have when writing an episode? Do they just have a beginning and end and can do whatever they want in between?”
Answer: Definitely not. When we gather to break stories for the new season, I already know what the arc of said season will be and most of the stories we’ll tell. We’ll spin ideas for the individual stories, and then put the beats up on the whiteboard, breaking down the episode scene by scene. Once we’re done, the writer will flesh out an outline based on the story we’ve broken. I’ll provide notes on the outline at which point the writer will write a first draft. Once they’ve incorporated my notes and delivered a second draft, I’ll do my pass on the script.
Randomness writes: “How do you feel about episodes based in the future?”
Answer: Love them.
Answer: More so, have you ever considered doing a Steins Gate type message from the future to one of the crew who is facing a traumatic ordeal and needs some encouragement to push through and overcome it from their future self?
Answer: No, although one of our crew members WILL be receiving a “message from the future” in an early season episode.
profmadmax writes: “Joe, on SG-1: whose call on DVD audio commentary participants?”
Answer: Participants weren’t so much chosen as they were asked. Whoever was free and interested would take part.
“Do you feel that a writer can plagiarize themself?”
Answer: I suppose so, yes.
“Your least favorite Atlantis episode & why.”
Answer: I hated Sanctuary. My take: https://josephmallozzi.wordpress.com/2014/02/17/february-17-2014-news-of-note-our-stargate-atlantis-rewatch-continues-withouchsanctuary/
Dupdiang writes: “Just wondering what influence you had or a point to for your finish.”
Answer: As I’ve said from the beginning, I developed Dark Matter as a five season long arc with a definite beginning, middle, and end. And all those elements are still in play.
TheOtherOne writes: “Please may I ask how you and Akemi first met? Was it love at first sight?”
Answer: We met in Tokyo at the Pierre Marcolini Cafe where she was working – and I was eating daily chocolate parfaits. Our first date: https://josephmallozzi.wordpress.com/2009/11/30/november-30-2009-tokyo-travel-day-6-ginza-la-tour-michel-troisgros/
“So far, what is the happiest memory you both share?”
Answer: So hard to narrow it down to just one. Well, there was the day she was accepted as a permanent resident here in Canada.
“Who (and what) was your very own first pet?”
Answer: I had a cat called Smokey growing up.
“Did you grow up with an animal companion?”
Answer: Always. Growing up I had Smokey, then a poodle named Snoopy, then various cats, then the pugs and Lulu.
“Please would you describe the circumstances you and Paul (Mullie) first met?”
Answer: We met in a college creative writing class of all places.
“And finally …Do you regret having to kill One off in Season 2?”
Answer: Do I miss actor Marc Bendavid? Absolutely!
That’s all for today. More answers to come!