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  1. Chris has been interviewed by the Vancouver Sun. (Very sad to learn why he was in Vancouver two weeks before, it seems Millennium's First Assistant Director had passed away, Jack Hardy who had made an active and admirable career... I can't find any information relating to his passing, so haven't updated his profile in the Episode Guide yet.) ... Series creator talks about Vancouver and B.C.s role in making the show a hit Interview By Francois Marchand, Vancouver Sun April 28, 2015 10:38 AM The truth is simple: Chris Carter loves Vancouver. The creator of hit sci-fi show The X-Files is coming back to the B.C. coast this week to be the special guest at a private Vancouver International Film Festival Industry event being held on National Canadian Film Day on April 29. Carter arguably opened the provinces doors to American television and film artists when he decided to shoot The X-Files in Vancouver and B.C. for its first five seasons, before taking the show back to California. The recently announced reboot of the series, consisting of six new episodes featuring most of the original cast and crew (including David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson reprising their roles as FBI agents Mulder and Scully), will be shot in Vancouver later this year. It will air on Fox in 2016. To celebrate National Canadian Film Day, VIFF will also be screening six Canadian films at the Vancity Theatre: Kris Elgstrands Songs She Wrote About People She Knows and Andrew Huculiaks Violent (both from B.C.), as well as critically acclaimed films by Xavier Dolan (Mommy), Robert Cohen (Being Canadian), Mars Horodyski (Bens At Home) and Kyle Thomas (The Valley Below). Tickets for the six-film event can be purchased at viff.org. The Vancouver Sun chatted with Carter via phone about his forthcoming VIFF Industry appearance, the return of The X-Files to B.C., and how truly Canadian the hit sci-fi series really is. Read more: https://www.vancouversun.com/entertainment/Chris+Carter+tells+truth+about+Files+return/11008763/story.html#__federated=1
  2. New interview with Lance Henriksen, enjoy ! TOPICS: 1:30 - Harbinger Down, an all practical FX film. 7:40 - Aliens & Bishop 13:40 - Prometheus 17:12 - Near Dark 20:00 - Millennium 23:48 - To Hell You Ride (Comic book series) Dark Horse Publishing 27:14 - Pottery Artwork Trailer "Harbinger Down"
  3. this is taken from ifmagazine.com NIGHT STALKER producer Frank Spotnitz © 2006 Touchstone Home Entertainment Exclusive Profile: NIGHT STALKER REMAKE CREATOR FRANK SPOTNITZ TALKS ABOUT THE NEW DVD – PART 1 The former X-FILES producer brought his sensibilities to last fall's exceptional TV show remake, but he details why the show was never given its proper due By: CARL CORTEZ Contributing Editor -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Published: 5/30/2006 Send this feature to a friend. Perhaps one of the biggest tragedies of the 2005-2006 network schedule was the premature cancellation of ABC’s re-imagining of the classic TV series THE NIGHT STALKER. Developed by former X-FILES alum Frank Spotnitz (and based on the classic show from the ‘70s starring Darren McGavin, the series followed reporter Carl Kolchak (Stewart Townsend) and partner/skeptic Perri Reed (Gabrielle Union), as they uncovered the supernatural underbelly of Los Angeles. One of the best of all the new genre shows that premiered last fall, THE NIGHT STALKER was stuck in the death time slot of Thursday’s at 9:00 p.m. and after six episodes, ABC pulled the series and didn’t give it a second chance. However, in the age of DVD, cancelled shows do indeed get a second chance – even if it’s just corralling all the aired and un-aired episodes with a bunch of special features which is what Spotnitz has done. In stores today from Touchstone Home Entertainment is THE NIGHT STALKER – THE COMPLETE SERIES. The 2-disc set includes all 10 episodes, in addition to two finished scripts that were never produced. Toss in a Spotnitz featurette, deleted scenes and commentary, and you have a perfect summation of what could have been ABC’s next big hit. Last week, Spotnitz spoke with iF MAGAZINE about the series, where it was heading if it continued and the scoop on upcoming projects including the potential X-FILES movie. This is PART 1 of our four-part interview. © 2006 Touchstone Home Entertainment Cotter Smith, Stuart Townsend, Gabrielle Union, Eric Jungmann star in THE NIGHT STALKER -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- iF MAGAZINE: What happened with the series? Why did ABC prematurely cancel it? FRANK SPOTNITZ: We had three huge strikes against us. You can say, the show just wasn’t very good or not accessible or maybe these three enormous obstacles specific to success had something to do with it. Time slot. That one isn not a secret. They told us they were going to put us on Thursday’s at 9:00 opposite C.S.I., which is incredibly tough time slot to be in. The second thing, they didn’t promote the show. There was not a dime of paid advertising. It all went to COMMANDER IN CHIEF and INVASION. We were not properly promoted in a way you need to be to get people to know you exist in this marketplace. The only thing could take comfort from, we had a lead-in in ALIAS that we hoped would draw viewers to our show. When ALIAS finally came on the air in the fall, it under-performed in a big way. When research came back and said, not only were the numbers small for ALIAS, it was not compatible for NIGHT STALKER because they were two completely different audiences. Even under the best of circumstances and if you had the most amazing show ever made, we would be very hard to succeed with that set of circumstances. iF: What I liked about the show was, it brought back what was cool with X-FILES -- really cool standalone horror stories Having done X-FILES, was it hard going into something like the NIGHT STALKER because you had that sort of template in your head? SPOTNITZ: I had to spend so much time figuring out how the show would work. I didn’t realize what I was getting into when I signed up for this. I loved the NIGHT STALKER and original TV movies and I agreed to it based on my love of those old movies and the love of the character and realized all the problems there were making Kolchak the hero of a series as opposed to the TV movies. And in the original series, they never figured out how to lick those problems. The more I got into how to make it work as a weekly series, I moved further away from the original concept. I did hit upon a template that was really exciting to me and it certainly owed something to the X-FILES way of storytelling, in that it really is a different supernatural phenomenon each week. And there was a skeptic character, actually three skeptic characters in the series, the photographer, Perri Reed and the editor [played by Tony Vincenzo]. But really got me excited about the show that was unique to this version of NIGHT STALKER was the whole notion of good and evil and was Kolchak what he seemed to be. That was the biggest disappointment of the show being canceled was that notion not being played out. iF: These guys are not cops, did you have to find ways around them not carrying guns? SPOTNITZ: Not having a gun was not that big a problem. On X-FILES they always had guns, because they were FBI agents, but in reality, a gun doesn’t work with a supernatural villain. There were a couple of times, the network and studio would raise their eyebrows about Kolchak or Reed go into a situation without a gun, but that wouldn’t help them. I didn’t perceive that to be such a problem. To me, the bigger problem when your heroes are reporters, was "why does it matter?" Who cares whether a reporter goes and writes a story or not, how is going to change the outcome? I think that’s why you don’t see shows about reporters. Does it matter whether the story gets written in the newspaper? I answered that, by having them be investigative reporters. They’re investigating stories no one would investigate unless they didn’t do it and having them change the outcome. Each week, because of their investigation, somebody lives or dies who wouldn’t live or die if they hadn’t got involved and the fact that Kolchak is willing to answer these questions, when no one else is, changes the outcome of the story. iF: Was there an episode where you feel you finally hit your stride? SPOTNITZ: Of the episodes that were broadcast, "Five People You Meet in Hell" was very successful. I felt it was not like anything else that had been done and it was really scary and entertaining and it embodied so many things I want the series to be. The show that I really felt, "we got the series now," was "The Sea," second part of the two-parter which never aired. That was the one I felt we finally had everything in place in terms of the characters, their voices and the way they relate to each other.They really began to gel as a family of characters and it was frustrating IF MAGAZINE: Before the officially cancelled you, why didn’t ABC at least take the show and put it on another slot to see if there was an audience for it.FRANK SPOTNITZ: We were very actively lobbying the network for that very thing. The studio, Touchstone, was enormously supportive of the show and really believed in it and people at the network were supportive of the show. We were begging, just repeat us after LOST one week, anything, to let people we’re on the air , but we couldn’t get a yes.iF: Were you trying to wrap things up with the last episode filmed -- "What’s the Frequency Kolchak?" – knowing the writing was on the wall and the show would likely be cancelled? SPOTNITZ: Until the last night, I continued to hold out hope it would prevail. So many people at the studio and network really believed in the show and were passionate about it and were trying to find ways to give us another chance. The ratings were at about the level they said they had to be at in order for us to stay on the air. And they took us off the air for a week, and brought us back on and no one knew we were on. I continued to believe they were going to recognize the value of the show they had and find a way to stick with it until the day they cancelled it. I wasn’t shocked that they cancelled. I wasn’t expecting it. iF: If you had the time to wrap the series up, could you? SPOTNITZ: There was no way I could and there were enormous amounts of questions I had set up in those first few episodes. I don’t know how I would have tried to make it feel like an ending, I certainly couldn’t resolve everything with a finale. iF: Did you have an idea how the season would have wen if you had a full 22-episode order? SPOTNITZ: I had so many twists and turns with Kolchak’s character Agent Bernie Fain (John Pyper-Ferguson). In February, I was introduce the other person who had the mark on the wrist, who was actually the person standing outside of Emily Gale’s house in the pilot. It was not Kolchak, it was this other guy with this mark on the wrist. He was going to tell Kolchak what the mark meant, that "you and I were meant to fight evil and not a role we asked for in life, it was what we were born to do, that’s why you have to do what you’re doing." And as the season went on and we went into Season 2, we become suspicious of this guy, and distrustful of him and sure enough we would find out in Season 2, that this guy is evil. What he said the mark means, is exactly the opposite of what it means. It means that you’re born evil and Kolchak was born evil. There were a lot of twists and turns and just when you think he’s a good guy, he’s suddenly a bad guy. iF: Would Kolchak have turned really bad? SPOTNITZ: To me, what you would have realized in Season 2, everything he’s done has in fact been bad. It didn’t seem like it, because good outcomes came about, but he was doing it for the wrong reasons. That was one of the things that was so fascinating to me about this whole idea of good and evil, I think what the series had to say, was you need to be aware, you need to open your eyes, because you can serve evil thinking you’re doing good, unless your eyes are open. That was going to become interesting for Perri Reed especially. She was the character of light and good in the series. And that’s what I thought would be increasingly clear to people. When they first saw it, it was the believer/skeptic thing like X-FILES, but more than that, it was good and evil and here is a character who is selfish and an egotist, really only interested in what matters to him. And here’s a character in Perri Reed, who is not selfish, who is an idealist and wants to do the right thing and is challenged because she is partnered with this guy whose agenda is much darker than that. iF: What happened to Kolchak’s wife? SPOTNITZ: He didn’t actually kill his wife, but he was aligned with the forces that did, and he was probably used by those forces, to drive out onto the highway that night and get her killed. He was not the agent of her death. All his life he was headed in this direction, serving evil, and he wasn’t aware of it yet. iF: That would have been a tricky balance to turn your hero into a villain. They’ve done it before, like on ANGEL, but it is challenging. SPOTNITZ: My intention from the very beginning, before ABC picked up the show, they made me write up a five-page document, answering everything I set up in the pilot and saying what the last episode of the series would be. And when Stuart Townsend signed on for the role, I said he’s actually bad and Stuart loved that and got very excited. You’ve never seen that before. That to me, the design of the show, someone who was suspected of killing his wife and when you find out he really is evil and then you’re forced to re-evaluate Agent Fain. He comes off as a bad guy in the early episodes, but is he really a bad guy if the guy he is pursuing is actually evil. To me it was really rich all the things you could have done with it. iF: So what would have been the last episode of the series if you continued on? SPOTNITZ: In the audio commentaries on the DVD, I try to reveal as much as I can, but the one thing I don’t do is tell how the series would have ended, simply because you never know. iF: You had to tell the network? SPOTNITZ: I did, but it’s a secret. I don’t expect the show to come back and you never know and if it ever should come back in any shape or form, I would sabotage myself irreparably if I revealed what the last show would be? iF: Did you look for another network for THE NIGHT STALKER after it was cancelled? FRANK SPOTNITZ: When the show got cancelled, we had discussions with a number of people about continuing the show on another network. The problem was an economical one, it is not an expensive series. It just didn’t work financially to produce it at another network. I don’t think we could do the show in the manner which we were ding it on another network. iF: The two scripts that are featured on the DVD – are they the final shooting scripts? SPOTNITZ: We just started shooting "Ascendant" the night we got cancelled. The 12th episode, "The M Word" was written by Darin Morgan, who wrote so many of the funniest and best episodes of THE X-FILES. iF: What are they about? SPOTNITZ: "Ascendant" is a stand-alone mystery about people who are dying after horoscopes predict their deaths and why that is happening. "The M Word" I was really excited to produce, because it is a flat out comedy. It is a very funny script. If you listen to the commentary and you hear about the difficulties we had with ABC about the whole subject of monsters, they really didn’t want monsters on the show at all, the title of Darin’s episode takes on an added significance. The M Word, the words you can’t say – monster. It’s very clever and funny and one of the reasons why I wanted to include scripts on the DVD, a certain segment of the audience would really enjoy it. iF: Such a great medium to be able to archive things that would never see the light of day. SPOTNITZ: It’s great way to see the show. Not only is the video and audio quality superior to watching it on broadcast, you can watch it at your own pace and without commercial interruption. iF: Did you think of putting that footage of "Ascendant" on the DVD? SPOTNITZ: We were only shooting for a few hours, when they pulled the plug. I never even saw the dailies from that day. iF: As much as I loved the original series, when I bought the DVDs last year, I didn’t realize how dated the show feels. SPOTNITZ: I got a lot of flak, which I knew I would from NIGHT STALKER fans about how different it was from the original series. I wanted to say, go back and look at that series, it really doesn’t age that well. Darren McGavin is wonderful, but the series itself was kind of silly and certainly would not survive in today’s television landscape. iF: You were a journalist before you became a screenwriter. How did it help being a reporter when it came time to write THE NIGHT STALKER? SPOTNITZ: It gave me great comfort, because I felt I understood this world without having to do research because I knew it first hand. We went down to the L.A. Times, to see how a newsroom operates today, because it’s been ten years since I worked in a news room. I ran into six people I knew, because it’s my past. Unlike, people who are writing shows about lawyers who have never been in a law firm, if you’re writing about reporters and have been a reporter, you have a sense of what the politics of that job are. What you would ask and not ask. So it makes it much easier to write the shows. IF MAGAZINE: What’s the X-FILES movie status? FRANK SPOTNITZ: My deal has been done for a really long time and David Duchovny, Chris Carter and Gillian Anderson all have deals. There are legal issues between Chris and the studio relating to the old show that are holding everything up. It has nothing to do with the deal with the movie, it has to do with the TV series. The movie will not happen until and unless he resolves those issues I’m hoping he will soon so we can get to work on it. We would all love to do it still. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- iF: Do you still think there is an X-FILES audience? SPOTNITZ: I would like to think if you do good work, people would come out and see it. Those are such great characters and David and Gillian are so perfect in those roles and we have a really scary story for those characters to operate in? iF: Does it deal with the "M" word? SPOTNITZ: It’s not an alien mythology conspiracy type movie, it’s a stand-alone movie. I’ve never pretended I can handicap commercial success in anything I do, all I can do is do good work and hope that we find an audience. iF: You’re relaunching a franchise so to speak, like a James Bond movie almost. SPOTNITZ: Obviously we need to catch up where the characters are in their lives now, what they’ve been doing since the series ended. It could easily be a series of stand-alone movies, and that’s what I would love it to become. iF: Would you still have to deal with messier aspects of the John Doggett (Robert Patrick) and Monica Reyes (Annabeth Gish) since they were so pivotal in the last two seasons? SPOTNITZ: We haven’t figured out what we were going to do there. I would love to include those characters and pay homage to the past of the series, but the thing is, you don’t want to encumber the movie with a lot of expository stuff you’ve got to put in there to allude to the old show. As much as possible, I would like to honor the series without encumbering the movie. iF: Okay, so even though you have a deal, and everything is still up in the air, if this happened, when would it happen or is it a nebulous thing? SPOTNITZ: They might never resolve the issues and so the movie might not ever happen. I would think that if they resolve the issues, we would go immediately. iF: What about the STAR CHAMBER remake you were going to direct? SPOTNITZ: That’s going to be a feature film for 20th Century Fox. iF: I thought that was going to be for TV at some point. SPOTNITZ: It actually began as a TV movie. I was going to direct. It’s a long story, but the script came in late, there was a regime change at the network and it ended up finding new life as a feature. iF: Are you still going to direct? SPOTNITZ: I don’t know. At this point, I’m just producing it, and I don’t even know if I would be able to direct it when the time comes. iF: How different is it from the original movie? SPOTNITZ: I think the central idea is the same. It’s one of those movies, where I always felt the idea was better than the execution, which is why I think it’s a great candidate for a remake. It’s not like you we're making something that was perfect the first time. The original if you watch it now, it really feels dated. It’s a Reagan-era diatribe against the ACLU and the rights of criminals. That doesn’t apply to the world we live in now. Now, thematically, it’s about pursuing justice at all costs, which really relates to the world we’re living in. I think it can be a much better movie than the first time around. iF: What is AMPED? SPOTNITZ: AMPED is a pilot Vince Gilligan and I wrote, that Spike TV has bought. iF: Have you shot the pilot? SPOTNITZ: We’re waiting for a greenlight. Their hope is to shoot it in summer and broadcast it some time after that. It’s another scary show. It’s set in a police precinct. The idea is the world outside of this precinct has changed, that a certain percentage of the population has begun mutating in all kinds of different ways. It depends on your individual DNA, what form your mutation takes. So these cops go out into the world every day and they literally don’t know what they’re going to encounter every day. It’s scary and has a lot of humor in it and it has allegories for terrorism, racism and all sorts of other things. I’m really excited to do it. iF: What else are you working on? SPOTNITZ: I just re-upped with Touchstone Television, who I did NIGHT STALKER with. I’m supposed to develop new series for them. That’s a two-year deal. Right now, I’m just dreaming up what I want to do. iF: Do you like the freedom of the TV world versus movies? SPOTNITZ: Television is too much of a good thing. You get the order and once you’ve gone through all those incredible hoops of getting the show on the air, you’re just doing the work at that point. There is no time for a lot of other nonsense. You just have to make the show and that’s fantastic. The thing I don’t like is that it’s so much work, it’s overwhelming, you’re doing 24-hours of television, it’s really a brutal workload and it’s not a lot of time to do all that television and do a great job, so you find yourself, killing yourself to get the work done and to do as good a job as you can. I love how big the canvas is on television and how long you can tell these stories and all the different permutations they go through. I really like getting to know the actors you’re working with and writing to their strengths and discoveries you make about theme in the course of doing a series as well as the relationship you develop with everybody, behind the camera as well. It’s a wonderful thing in many ways. It’s also unique as a writer. You get to be the producer and the decision maker. That’s a big advantage TV has.
  4. Lance Henriksen Fan Interview 24th April 04 with Sue Myatt of Lance Henriksen Magic On Lance’s side of the Atlantic it was midday Saturday 24th April, a sunny 85 degrees, and Lance was sitting in his garden with birds singing blissfully in the background. He had a firing of some of his new pots going and I could tell that life was simply perfect for him! For me, late in the evening, I could feel some Californian serenity being piped down my phone line, extending the glorious day that I had already spent lying in the sun watching nature in my garden (and trying to protect it from my two kittens!). So I think we were both pretty chilled. Lance was clearly honoured to have so many people with such heartfelt gratitude and deep respect for him. He was also totally chuffed that his fans had remembered his birthday. He wanted me to pass on his warmest regards to you all for taking an interest in the interview and sending him birthday wishes. I admit I was a little nervous; I had so many good questions and I didn’t want to disappoint. But Lance soon put me at ease. He began by telling me about his next project, which he is obviously excited about. It’s a new movie, the story of Evil Knievel – the motorcycle daredevil that kids of my generation adored (yes I had the toy motorbike and action man!). Lance plays Evil’s mechanic, Bill Awful Kawful (? not quite sure of pronunciation!). Lance says that his character is “a real geyser, he’s a very funny guy.” In fact he took the part because he really wanted to play this character. He’s just starting to get into the role for the movie, which starts filming May 19th in Canada. It sounds like it could be fun to see Lance in this role! Here’s the rest of the interview: Q. Hi Lance, We met a number of years back while you were here filming "Gunfighter's Moon". I don't know that you would remember me, but I wanted to extend my thanks once more for how gracious you were not just to myself but to all of the townspeople of Maple Ridge. It was a true privilege to have you here. My question that I'd like to ask is do you face any particular challenges in creating your performance when you play a real-life individual, such as Wally Schirra or Charles Bronson, and have you ever received feedback from somebody that you played? Robert Richardson, Maple Ridge, Canada A. “The hardest part about playing a real person in a movie is that it makes you very self-conscious. But once you start working then you’re ok, you get into it and don’t think about it. But it’s different if you meet them beforehand, it would make it easier. But I’ve only ever played guys I’ve never met. It would be better to meet them beforehand.” Lance brought to mind his movie, The Right Stuff. Although this was made in 1983, in June 2003 he spent some time with heroes of the NASA space programme, as part of a ceremony inducting former NASA astronauts into the Hall of Fame. At the Space Center Lance found himself sitting next to Wally Schirra, the character he played in The Right Stuff. “Wally turned to me and said ‘it looks like I didn’t do anything’. [Lance’s role got cut out of the movie to a large extent]. But you can’t combine the Chuck Yeager story and the astronauts. But they did make the astronauts look like fools. By the way say hello to Maple Ridge for me!” Q. Dear Lance, I know, that you have two daughters; one nearly an adult girl, and the other still little. What future do you see for your daughters? Would you encourage them to follow in your footsteps? Sergeyenko Anastasya, Russia A. My older daughter wanted to be an actress when she was young but I refused to let her because I wanted her to have childhood. Children need to be allowed have a proper childhood. But I got her into a [Millennium] show: she played a runaway child in one episode. And she loved it. I would take her to set and the make up people were all over her because she is such a cute girl. Q. Happy Birthday Lance! (a little early) Hope you have many more. I read somewhere you're not like any of the characters you play. What are some of your favorite things? What music, food, sports, books, do you like? Annie Nichols U.S. A. Eminem is one of my favourites right now. I like Thai food, but I’m a terrible cook. I just like to throw food together. I like palm trees and the sun. I love Hawaii. I haven’t been to see many movies lately. But I thought Kill Bill 2 was a terrible movie. You know Tarrantino must’ve worked in a video shop or something, and he just has these scenes in his mind that he wants to shoot over again. It’s too stylized. Q. My question actually has something to do with breaking into the Film Industry Business. I was wondering if you had any tips or secrets about working as an Actor or Painter on a set. Xircuits A. I started in theatre, my first job was designing sets. I didn’t know what I was doing, but I had a talent for making dramatic sets; I had been a painter for years. The first play I did, I got the job because I had built the set! And I didn’t even know I got the lead part. The key thing to remember in this business is that they don’t invite you in, but once you’re in they won’t kick you out. So start small and it will grow ABOUT MILLENNIUM : Q The most powerful episodes of Millennium were directed by Thomas J. Wright. Is it accurate to say that you two clicked in a major way, almost to the point of professionally knowing one another so intimately as to be able to know what the other wanted? Could you explain the working relationship that developed between you two throughout the run of "MillenniuM"? DAVID F. BARRY, US A. Absolutely! Tom Wright became a close friend and it got to point where I would just know where he was going with ideas, we didn’t even have to talk. He’s brilliant. He is an artist as well … a painter. He used to do the storyboards for Alfred Hitch****. When we first met we didn’t like each other, we had these preconceived ideas about the person that the other was. But after long hours working together we became very close. Q. Had you ever the ambition to write and/or direct an episode of MillenniuM, like David Duchovny did on the X-Files ? Alexander Grodzinski, Germany No, I have no desire to direct. I never have. But I like writing scripts. I’m working on one at the moment – it’s called Melt. I’ve been writing it for the last 10 years. It all started when I read the line from a Dylan Thomas poem, “The ball I threw while playing in the park has not yet reached the ground.” [from Should Lanterns Shine]. That line got my attention, it inspired me. It’s about a guy throwing ball in the park when he was a kid and it has still not hit the ground now he is an adult. It’s a sci-fi story … about time. You know there’s this little kid in all of us, he’s still in there, deep down in us those atoms are the same as when we were that kid. But doing Millennium, I couldn’t be the bride at every wedding and the corpse at every funeral. I really needed to stay subjective and didn’t have the chance to get objective enough about it to think about directing. Q. Hello`MR H We loved your work In 'Near Dark" and "Stone Cold". We also Enjoy your Pottery as well.. Do you know of or remember any of the cut footage from "Millennium" . Were many parts of "Millennum" cut out because they were just to rough or bloody for TV?? A. A lot of jokes would happen, we would start laughing uncontrollably because of the tension of the show, so some very funny things would happen on set. Mostly in terms of language [the dialogue was, at times, complex], I’ve already told you about the line: 'I detect an unusual level of mindfulness associated with the violence.' Well some of these things Chris would get me to say I’d have to get 10 dictionaries out to understand the words. So we’d end up saying something out of context or doing a scene out of order. You’d catch a look from another actor and start laughing. The guy who played Giebelhouse had been fisherman in Alaska, he was a real man, very funny guy, me and him would crack up a lot on the set. Q. Frank Black was a wonderfully crafted and realised hero in the truest sense of that word, and I still find both the character and some of the episodes an inspiration. My question is, with several years' distance now between you and the character, how far has the experience of playing him affected your outlook on life? Adam Chamberlain, London, England A. Quite a bit. When I look back I have 20/20 vision, and I can be objective now I’m not playing him. It makes me realize all the things that could have been done to make the show more powerful. The show should have never have ended when it did. Cases can’t all be solved by 9 o’clock when the show ended. I would’ve also liked the chance to show more of the process of [Frank’s] thinking in that situation [his thought processes]. I would love to get the chance to play a similar character and show all this – it’s certainly a role I’d look out for in the future. Q. Hey Lance, In Sue's interview, you mentioned "secrets" that you learned about Frank Black as the season progressed and share with Chris Carter at the end of each season. As an aspiring screenwriter, I've learned how important a character's "secrets" (untold back story) can be in telling a good story. Did Chris use what you'd learned about Frank during the first two years? At the end of season three, Frank and Jordan were heading on a journey. Where did you think they were going and where did you want them to go? Thanks, Wayne A. No, the demands of a TV show like that are so hectic there was no chance. Chris couldn’t incorporate my ideas, there was no time. Where do I think they’re off to? I’m an addict for the South Seas … somewhere warm and beautiful. Q. Lance: Considering the undeniable brilliance and breaking of new ground that went into Millennium, can you elaborate on how the show's premature cancellation affected you? It must have been extremely frustrating. Ric Fisher USA A. Very frustrating. We all knew it would have its found legs in the fourth year. The plans were getting very strong. The problem we had was that the producer was fired and another guy took over and cancelled Millennium. Then he got fired soon after! But the fourth season would perhaps go in the direction I was hoping; the shows would not have been solved so quickly. Look at the brilliance of shows like The Sopranos, brilliance of it is that they don’t wrap it up at the end of the night. Life is not like that, it doesn’t all come with a neat answer wrapped up within the hour. Q. Hello Lance, I hear you have a birthday approaching, so I would like to wish you a very happy birthday! I am looking forward to the DVD release of Millenium. I consider it to be one of the finest things ever shown of American TV. I was wondering, were there any actors, films, etc... That have been an inspiration to you as an actor? Michael, IL, USA A. Certain actors’ performance even in bad films can be incredible, and inspiring. Some of my favourite actors weren’t very well noticed in their careers: John Malone was a great actor, he came from the Peking Theatre. And Chow Yun Fat (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), John Woo [directed Hard Target] is a great guy and an inspiring person. Along the way there are moments from all kinds of movies, if I find 5 mins in any film worth watching it is worth watching the film. I love finding that gem of a performance, There are so many actors who are so talented. The one best thing on millennium was meeting new actors every week. I always tried to make them feel welcome . Q. Thank you for your wonderful work in Millennium. I have read that you were originally not interested in starring in a television series until Millennium. Would you consider acting in another series, and if so, what criteria would need to be met for you to agree to do more work in television? Sage Lutton, New Jersey, USA A. It depends on what the goal is, on what the show is about. Doing TV is a lifestyle; you need to really want play a character and have respect for what [the character] is doing. I loved doing the Millennium show because I felt like a working actor with a lunch box in my hand. It was very unusual for me to get to play a character for that length of time. It was like being on Broadway. [i asked him if he had ever felt the urge to go back into theatre, as this seems to be a popular trend amongst some actors, ie Kevin Spacey.] No because I’m so addicted to film, the process is so extended. In theatre you have to go to lengths to get the show extended. But perhaps a small obscure play, somewhere out of the way, might be more interesting. Q. Dear Lance, Thank you very much for your portrayal of Frank Black on Millennium. Your work is exceptional. Happy birthday! My question is this: if you could re-live any moment during the three years of making Millennium, what would that moment be, and why? A. Boy that’s a tough one. There was so much dignity in the family, Brittany Tiplady was sweetest child I’ve ever met. Being a family in those stolen moments would be something I would like to relive. The rest was like going to war! There are some serial killings going down in the U.S. right now, and when I watch those stories in the news I slip back into Frank. I lean back in my chair and start thinking about the case, thinking like these guys think. [i asked him how he thinks someone like Frank (and the academy guys) distance themselves from all the horror of it all]. You have to divorce yourself from the emotion, get objective about it. And the key thing to remember is that these guys are the only ones speaking for victim in all this, they have a job to do. Q. Hi, I was wondering if you and Chris Carter have discussed a possible film dealing with both Millennium and X-files? A. Yeah, I’m hoping that happens. If enough people write to Fox it could happen. Q. Last July, we held an interview with Sarah Jane Redmond. SJR was asked her thoughts on working with you: "[Lance was] By far the greatest example of grace, talent, joy, commitment, and generosity I have ever come across. Lance is one of, if not the, most giving, dynamic powerful, and daring actors I have thus far worked with. He loves his craft, and his exuberance for life comes through in his work." Were you aware of how much of an impact you had on her as a professional colleague? Best regards, Graham Smith. UK A. She's a wonderful actress. No I wasn’t aware, I was so busy enjoying their company and who they were, that it was a wonderful experience. It makes my heart swell … [to hear how these actors see him]. I see the vulnerability of actors. It always moves me in some way. Q. First of all, let me thank you for the rendition of the best TV character ever. Frank Black and Millennium had a great impact on my work as a writer, so thank you again. Millennium ending abruptly as it did, I guess there were a number of secrets and possible plot hooks that you never had the chance to reveal to the public. Are there any you know by any chance? Riccardo Raccis, Florence, Italy A. I know that Chris and his group had the next season figured out already. They were all disappointed. We all just got numb [when we heard]. I was in my truck heading home down from Canada when I got the news on my cellphone. My wife and two dogs were in the car with me. I just felt numb. Q. Did your time doing the show affect you personally? It always had such a spiritual theme, and so I was wondering in what way, if any, that affected you and your life. Erin McRaven A. Both negative and positive. On the negative side wherever I went with my wife I was looking out of the car window, saying I know what’s going on in that building. My wife would have to ask Frank: “Can lance come out and play?” In that respect it wasn’t much fun. But the positive side was knowing how rich my life was. I took it serious. It was a psychological nightmare, facing all the demons that there are. It gave me a lot of faith in human beings. Meeting the academy group made me well up, that these people are so caring and trying so hard to solve all these cases. Even though they were all retired they were still doing it . ABOUT HIS CAREER: Q. I know you put in a lot of preparation for your roles. I wondered out of all the many and varied characters you have played, which ones you felt were most and least like you? which roles were 'less of a stretch' to get to, and which ones meant playing someone as far removed from the REAL you as possible? Hogan (Nr. Edinburgh, Scotland). A. That’s hard, there’s such a list. The villains I play are very far removed from what I am. I never play a bad guy before I’ve found out what makes his character feel alive, human. I always look for the humanity. For example Chains in Stone Cold [a tough biker]; I saw small window in that. Like Chains was this soldier willing to pay the price for what he had done. I used that to get into the character. And Fouchon in Hard Target, he was like a guy having been at war where his speed limit is so high that to feel normal you have to raise your speed limit to get that feeling and feel normal again. So he goes around creating huge conflict and chaos around him to get back to this feeling of normality. I find a way to FEEL like that person. It’s about feeling, not about an intellectual understanding. I wanted to know in my body what it felt like so I could go there. Like in Gunfighters’ Moon, this guy had been in so many fights, he had fought all his life. But he was a humanist, just crippled by his [notoriety and fame], but fame was the last thing he wants. He’s worn out by it. He goes to a place and everyone stands and stares because they know exactly who he is. It’s a bit like when you go to a restaurant and get recognized, it’s the last thing you want. So I will try to find things that I can use that everybody can relate to. It’s very much a physical thing for me. Pottery gives me this freedom, to do this physical thing. It’ s not intellectual at all. [i asked him if this physical aspect to his acting was related to his training at the Actors Studio.] There’s a way that the Actors Studio works, they want you to create character based on some experience from your own life so you personalize it. If you put that in your role your gonna do it: once you commit and make it personal, it’s like a thread. That thread, once its pulled … channeled, you don’t know where it’s coming from. You start this ‘channeling’. And it starts coming at such a speed … Q. Hi Lance, I would like to ask you how it was like for you at your exam of admission at the "actor's studio". Do you remember which roles/ scenes you played? Were you nervous or rather "cool"? Nicole Malige , Bochum, Germany I was so nervous! A playwright named Bond [sic] wrote a play called Saved [sic], the premise was that this guy has baby with a girl, it’s illegitimate, and some toughs in London stone the baby. It was a strong play. I was doing it in Boston at the time of the Actors Studio audition. I went to the audition for as for the Studio with that play, and I went with actress I was with in Boston. At first they wouldn’t let me into the Studio because thought I was British. I was playing a ****ney in the play. But me and the other actress both won a place - out of 300 people! Q. Have you ever been injured whilst filming? And if so, what happened to you. Was it serious or funny? A. Oh yeah! I’ve broken bones doing stunts, I’ve always been one to have a go. But after a while I realised that there are some things not worth doing. Stunt men pay a price, some of them can hardly walk when they’re older. John Woo set me on fire twice for Hard Target. It burnt my ears, but I would’ve done anything for John Woo. Q. Is it true you did a movie, together with Andy Garcia, about the painter Amedeo Modigliani? Could you tell a little about the movie and your role? A. Andy garcia is a friend of mine...i played Randolf Herst on a shopping spree in Paris...one moment in the film for good luck...that story has always been close to my heart. ABOUT HIS POTTERY: Q. What kind of pottery do you like to do the best? A. I like stoneware, I have a dozen simple glazes, and some slips and overglazes. I just touch the surface of what is available. But there is too much otherwise. And today you can get ingredients from anywhere – so many choices from all over the world. Need to limit myself [to get to know the medium thoroughly]. Omada [sic, a Japanese potter] had a road down to his studio. All the workers would line up along it waiting for him to come to work. By the side of road they would put all the pots from the last 5 or 6 firings, and as he walked past he would pick one to work on. I thought how graceful, peaceful that is. Q. Where do you find the inspiration for your pottery? A. In the material, I don’t believe there’s any such thing as a mistake in pottery. It is all an accident to begin with, so I just pursue the accident. Potters that say they are bored out of their minds are trying too hard. I don’t restrict the materials, I like to see what the materials would like to do; not what I want to do to them. [What Lance is saying here is portrayed beautifully in a quote from Alan Watts in Taoism Way Beyond Seeking: "A good potter does not force the clay to obey his preconceived ideas. He evokes the spirit in the clay to do some magic. So then, because the clay did that, these artists love the clay." ] Q. Lance, thank you so much for taking the time to answer our questions and connect with us. You are truly a unique and generous person. I was fascinated by the interviews you did in Prague with Sue. You were a painter. What made you get interested in becoming a potter? Allison, USA A. I’ve been doing pottery for 40 years, it has the same kind of energy that I do. I like the heat of it, I don’t like the dryness of canvass. It’s like comparing a painting that you do on wet, muddy canvass in the rain rather than on dry canvass. Q. Hi Lance, I share your passion for clay and have been a working potter for 15 years. Your work is exceptional and your glazes are wonderful! I'd like to ask you which is the greater passion in your life, your pottery or your acting - and if you had to go without one of them, which one would it be?....and have any of the roles that you have played inspired or been reflected in your pottery? Wendy Gacparski, Bright, Ontario, Canada A. They are equal obsessions. There are times I get up and can’t think about acting because I’ve got a firing on. And vice versa. I need both in my life, I am equally obsessive about both. [About roles that have inspired or been reflected:] It’s not happened yet, but I want to do the George Orr story. He was a potter in the 1800s and he was way ahead of his time. He was a Southern practical man, working class - he had 10 kids! His father was a blacksmith. People saw him as eccentric, crazy. Yeah, I’m very excited about this. Q. You have said that you were going to reconstitute your pottery site and I'd like to know more about your plans for the work you want to display; what is your wish list for your site? Pam Janisch/USA A. I’m doing a lot of big platters not many small things … and tiles. They’re more like paintings on clay. Our sincere and grateful thanks to Sue & Lance for this wonderful opportunity. Fans may wish to download the attached transcript in Microsoft Word Format. Lance_Interview.doc
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