Archive for the ‘science fiction’ Category





SUMOTO, JAPAN - MARCH 17:  A 20-year-old Japanese macaque monkey named Monday scratches her eyes while suffering an allergy to pollen from the cedar tree at Awajishima Monkey Centre on March 17, 2013 in Sumoto, Japan. Many monkeys are suffering the effects of hay fever at this time of the year, with the typical symptoms being the same as with humans.  According to Awajishima Monkey center this year hay fever is higher than last year, the pollen season is from February to April.  (Photo by Buddhika Weerasinghe/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***

 (Photo by Buddhika Weerasinghe/Getty Images) 


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My Snow Monkeys were trounced in week 12 fantasy football league play, blowing an opportunity to secure a first round bye in the upcoming playoffs.  Relegated to third place following this humiliating loss, my team must win next week AND hope This Ones For John loses in order to avoid a potential first round post-season match-up against either the red hot Tramp Stamps or the Ivon Bartok’s dominant Running Dead.


Sad monkey.

On the bright side, tomorrow, official prep begins on Dark Matter’s second season.  On tap tomorrow – director Amanda Tapping leads the proceedings with:

9:45 – 10:00 : Episode 202 Props Meeting – Re: The Claw

10:00 : Set walk-thru

15:00 : Episode 201 – Concept Meeting

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This is what Akemi gets up to with the dogs while I’m at work…

1 2

According to her: “They love to wear their hats when they go out!”

I remain dubious.

Meanwhile, back on the work front: a little something props has been working on…


We’re going to lose the light at the bottom.

Work continues on the script front.  Act 4 was looking a little short, so I moved a scene up from Act 3 which was a little long.  Now, Act 4 is perfect.  But Act 3 is a little short.  Tabor, meanwhile, has been an utterly delightful guest.  We need to get him on the ship more often.

Back to my dogs.  Lulu has no manners…

I think she broke the sound barrier on that one.

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I’m pleased to report that I finally pushed through that pesky today.  In the end, I went with the one tried and true writer’s block-breaking method I failed to mention in yesterday’s blog entry: When in doubt, use humor!  With that done, it was a nice segue into that delightful Android-Tabor scene.  One more scene to cap the act and it’s smooooooth sailing!


This week has been like Magic: The Gathering, but without the magic part.  The other day, Anthony Lemke (THREE) dropped by the production offices with his family.  Today, it was Melissa O’Neil (TWO) with her adorable frenchie.  Yesterday, it was Alex Mallari Jr. (FOUR) who took the time to stop in and regale us with tales of his summer in Moscow.  Next time you see him at a convention, ask him to tell you the one about the receptionist, the Brad Pitt lookalike, and the drunken overprotective co-worker.

Happy Thanksgiving to our American fans!  Let’s celebrate with behind-the-scenes pics of our sets-in-progress: 1It’s okay.  You know the showrunner.  Come on through.


Warden Treihan’s office window.  Room with a view.


All the comforts of home.


Hyperion-8 is a doorknob-less environment.


Come on, guys.  Let’s move things along.  My laundry isn’t going to do itself!

1Damn, our Construction and Art Departments do good work!


And, of course, this is the…well, I’d tell you, but then I’d have to hire you.  And make you sign a non-disclosure agreement because the only way to keep you from talking about it would be to kill you and that, of course, would be illegal.  And very troublesome.

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Presenting : our Dark Matter season 2 mystery concept sketch of the week. What’s going on up there?  Who are those guys?  What is that room?  What’s the deal with those green things?  Any guesses?

Today was a day fraught with audition screenings, tattoo discussions, and much spinning of creative wheels on this script I’m trying to complete before next week. I have been battling this scene for going on three days now and the usual breakthrough methods haven’t helped.  They are, in order of efficacy: 1) driving around, 2) bourbon, 3) ignoring the problem until the solution arrives in a panic-fueled inspiration.  Tick tick tick.  Meanwhile, every other aspect of production continues to speed headlong toward next week’s start of official prep!

Speaking of every one being incredibly constructive – in this case, literally – check out the work-in-progress modeling being done on the Hyperion-8 Galactic Detention Facility by VFX Supervisor Lawren Bancroft-Wilson and the gang –


They’re, to refresh your memories, the same people who brought you…


And –


And –


Set walk-thru today!  Pictures tomorrow!

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Well, well, well.  Look who came by for their season 2 fitting.  Why, it’s none other than Alex Mallari Jr. (Dark Matter’s FOUR), back from a multi-month working vacation in Russia…which might explain the shoes (provided he didn’t steal them from the costume beside him).  Also in for a fitting following an equally busy hiatus was Melissa O’Neil (Dark Matter’s TWO).

We’re getting the band back together!

Yesterday was our first Episode 201 Preliminary Playback/Graphics/Rear Projection meeting of the young season.  A few of the visual delights we discussed:


What are you in the mood for?  A Binary Burger?  Hyperion Hen?  Some cosmic kebabs?  Just make your selection, slide your plate under the nozzles, and Bon Appetit!


And, of course, you’re going to need one of these in Hyperion-8.  Your money’s no good here!


One of the honking big-ass wall monitors in Warden Treihan’s office.  On Sunday nights, all the guards come over to watch The Walking Dead on the big screen.

Looking ahead to next week: Preliminary episodes 201/202 schedule meetings, set walk-thru #2, background inmate photo look-see, and, of course, I continue work on five different scripts.

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Feeling opinionated?  Here are the candidate designs for the Ishida imperial shuttle.

IKEDA Imperial Shuttle sketches 1-4_16nov,2015_BR

IKEDA Imperial Shuttle sketches 5-7_16nov,2015_BR

IKEDA Imperial Shuttle sketches 8-11_16nov,2015_BR

So, which version do you prefer?

Thanks to illustrator Bartol Rendulic for the amazing design work!

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November 18, 1477: William Caxton prints the first English dated book.

November 18, 1626: St. Peter’s Basilica is completed.

November 18, 1916: The Battle of the Somme ends.

Today: Members of the Dark Matter production team engage in The Great Green Screen Debate of 2015!

We can’t do it!  We CAN do it!  We shouldn’t do it!  We should do it!  We’re not doing it!  We’re ARE doing it after all!

Highlights of the heated discussion included: shooting angles, techno-crane accessibility, plate shots, lock-offs, high angle reveals, low angle reveals, and crowd duplications.

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You’ll be pleased to hear we finally got it all worked out.


Hey, speaking of concepts, how’d you like to help us choose an Ishida shuttle design?  If you’re keen, and feeling opinionated, I’ll upload the concept sketches as part of tomorrow’s blog entry.  How’s that for audience participation?

P.S. As I mentioned in yesterday’s entry, the kick-ass Melanie Liburd (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm4927489/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1) has been cast in the role of Nyx for the upcoming season of Dark Matter.  She’s on twitter so update your digidexes and follow her here: https://twitter.com/mellyliburd

Finally, a little something to leave you with from Roxanne Borris and the Art Department.





“DO NOT put any person in this washer”.  Sound advice!

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