Saturday, November 15, 2008

Stargate Atlantis - 'Remnants' Behind the Scenes - Commentary and Photos

From Joseph Mallozzi's blog update for November 15, 2008:

(Please follow the link for the complete blog update and to view the behind the scenes photos from Stargate Atlantis' 'Remnants,' in their original format.)

Robert Davi (Acastus Kolya)

November 15, 2008: The Remnants Write-up

The original idea for this episode came out of a desire to do a Woolsey story. It's no secret that, in the short time he has become a regular, Woolsey has become a favorite of mine and I wanted to continue the rehabilitation of the character we'd started as far back as SG-1's 7th season episode Inauguration. To that end, I wanted to humanize him a little more by focusing on his vulnerabilities and the fact that, despite his officious nature and occasional abrasiveness, he is at heart a lonely individual.

Director Will Waring, Anna Galvin (Dr. Vanessa Conrad) and Robert Picardo (Richard Woolsey)

I wanted to do an episode not unlike the play Harvey (later a movie starring Jimmy Stewart) which tells the tale of a softspoken, socially awkward individual with an imaginary(?) friend = a tall, upright-walking rabbit. In the Stargate: Atlantis version, a discussion on Woolsey's apparent loneliness would segue into his encounter with a new addition to the Atlantis expedition, a female scientist who he ends up hitting off with. Over the course of the episode, pressured by the strains of his ongoing probationary review, he finds comfort and, inevitably, romance in Dr. Conrad. At episode's end, however, the truth is discovered and the individual known as Dr. Conrad must leave him. It is a bittersweet moment and, with her departure, Woolsey returns to his lonely existence.

Tamlyn Tomita (Shen Xiaoyi), Anna and Robert

Needless to say, this original version with a lot more melancholy. And a huge challenge because, as I sat down tried to beat out an outline, I realized that the core of the story lacked any real conflict (Woolsey's review aside) and, quite frankly, the idea couldn't really support an entire episode. So I thought about it some more and remembered an idea we had pitched out and shelved seasons ago involving Sheppard on the mainland hallucinating an encounter with Kolya. Finally, I needed certain backstory elements that could be delivered piecemeal over the course of the episode - which was where the McKay-Zelenka story came in.

David Hewlett (Dr. Rodney McKay) and David Nykl (Dr. Radek Zelenka)

In the end, the episode wound up focusing on three seemingly dissimilar storylines that eventually turn out to be linked by common themes - the fundamental loneliness of these three characters and their deep-seated vulnerabilities which are exploited by the A.I. ...

Sekkari seeding pod

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