Imagine talking about one of your favorite series, when suddenly the creator of the show calls in to join the discussion. That's exactly what happened last night on our podcast, Fandom Access. Riese: Kingdom Falling creator, writer, and producer Ryan Copple surprised the cohosts and the fans by calling in to the show live to answer questions.
According to Copple, the story of Riese did not originally start out as a web series. "It started as a short that I wrote with a friend of mine. And it was really inspired by a lot of personal events, because I’ve traveled a lot, and some anime influences. We took it to Kaleena Kiff, who is the other creator of Riese. We asked her to direct the short and she was like “No, no, no, this isn’t a short; this is a series." So Kaleena and I co-created it into a world. Whereas the short was about Riese herself, traveling with a wolf, it was more of a standalone journey, entering a really weird town and having some sort of moral dilemma that she faced. We were able to build it as a world and a series that had lots of characters to bring it to life and a whole serialized arc that could carry it throughout the show. And it just sort of grew from there, from both of us.
We were actually referencing a lot of [steampunk] before we actually knew what steampunk was, and then eventually I think I found a Wikipedia entry and I said to Kaleena, “This is what we’ve been talking about this whole time. It’s exactly what it is: steampunk.” We always say we’re steampunk-inspired, because we’re not the purest steampunk where it’s more the Victorian era. Instead we see Riese as more of a Dark Ages-Medieval meets World War I time period...It feels very fantasy and medieval, but at times there are certain hints of modern technology. Like when she’s in the hospital there are some very modern things, and it’s sort of the blending of those two eras. And that’s what’s really fun about steampunk, the “what if” of it, just imagining what could be in a different future."
Syfy's all new drama Being Human is not being considered a remake, but a "re-imagining" of the UK series of the same name. The show will star Sam Witwer, Sam Huntington, Meaghan Rath, and Mark Pellegrino as Bishop. Thirteen one-hour episodes of the series has been ordered.
The show follows the lives of the three paranormal roomates living together in Boston, as they try to hide their new secrets.
Sam Witwer, who plays Aidan, the vampire, is well known for his work in science fiction. He is probably best known for the roles of Crashdown on Battlestar Galactica, another Syfy re-imagining, and that of Davis Bloom and Doomsday on the series Smallville. He also had reoccuring roles on such series as Dexter and CSI. Witwer has also appeared on the silver screen as well, in films such as The Mist and Gamer. Witwer has also done voice work, such as for the video game Star Wars: Force Unleashed, and more recently, its sequel.
Sam Huntington, who plays the part of Josh, the werewolf, first started his career on stage, where he landed roles such as that of Jem in To Kill a Mockingbird at the Peterborough Players in New Hampshire. He first film appearance was in Jungle 2 Jungle. He can also be seen in such movies as Superman Returns, in which he played the part of Jimmy Olsen, and has had guest appearances on series such as CSI: New York and Human Target.
Meaghan Rath plays the part of the ghost, Sally. She landed her first professional role in the Sundance Festival hit Lost and Delirious. She starred in the Canadian series 15/Love as well as the series the The Assistants. She also appeared in movies such as 10.5: Apocalypse and I Me Wed.
Sam Witwer, Sam Huntington, and Meaghan Rath sat down in a recent press tour in Orlando to discuss the upcoming Syfy series.
By Karen MoulThe Walking Dead
was back this week with another great episode. It was perhaps not as excellent as the pilot but still worthy of an A-. At first look, "Guts" seemed to offer slightly less action than last week's episode, but that was mostly due to time contraints. The pilot was 90 minutes, and this week we had to settle for a normal one-hour show. But that hour gave us fast-paced storylines, great effects and very creative use of zombie guts.
The worst part of the episode? Nothing ruins an opening scene like seeing your two most hated characters having sex in the dirt. Ew. Shane's not an unattractive character. His conversation with Rick in the pilot made me think he is a jerk who doesn't like women all that much, and he seems to rule his little band more by bossiness than true leadership. And during a zombie apocalypse he thinks it's funny to sneak up behind someone and scare her? Very funny, jackass. He's lucky Lori was unarmed. Of course she's not too attractive either, she abandoned her comatose husband and she seems pretty into having sex with a jerk. So thanks writers for the sex scene, but I'd prefer to look at that zombie eating the rat.
Felicia Day is probably best known for her quirky comedic roles, such as her leading role as Penny in Joss Whedon's Dr. Horrible's Sing-along Blog, and of course for her role of Codex in the web series she herself created and writes for, The Guild. She has also appeared in Buffy the Vampire Slayer as Vi, and has had guest spots on such popular shows as House M.D. and Lie to Me. She continues to take on more serious roles with her role of Mag in Dollhouse, and now as Virginia in Red: Werewolf Hunter, which premiered on Syfy in October.Red: Werewolf Hunter is a modern day take on the Little Red Riding Hood story, where Day her descendant, whose family secret is that they hunt werewolves. The Syfy original movie also stars Kavan Smith as Day's fiance.Day was also recently involved in the video game Fallout: New Vegas, where she voiced the role of Veronica. She currently is also part of the voice talent in a new mobile game for Syfy's new web series Riese. Day can also be seen as Dr. Holly Marten on Eureka sometime next year.Day sat down with the digital media to discuss the new Syfy original movie, Red: Werewolf Hunter.
In preparation for an upcoming interview, Sci Fi Vision was given a press release for two original Syfy movies. Interview will be forthcoming.
SYFY KICKS OFF THE HOLIDAY SEASON WITH NOVEMBER SATURDAY ORIGINAL MOVIES THE LOST FUTURE AND TRIASSIC ATTACK SEAN BEAN (LORD OF THE RINGS) BATTLES DEADLY BEASTS WHILE RAOUL TRUJILLO (TIN MAN, TRUE BLOOD) CONFRONTS RESURRECTED DINOSAURS
New York, NY – October 25, 2010 – Syfy will get a jump on the festive holiday season with a pair of November Saturday Original Movies featuring mutant creatures and rampaging dinosaurs.
Starring Sean Bean (Lord of the Rings), The Lost Future, premiering Saturday, November 13, at 9PM (ET/PT), is set in an exotic and dangerous future world where an isolated tribe battles for survival in a landscape overrun by mutated beasts carrying a mysterious and deadly illness. A production of Tandem Communications GMBH, The Lost Future also co-stars Annabelle Wallis (The Tudors).
Directed by Colin Ferguson (Eureka), Triassic Attack, premiering Saturday, November 27, at 9PM (ET/PT), is about the Native American owner of a kitschy roadside museum who accidentally brings to life three dinosaur fossils. Now really annoyed, the giant dinos wreak havoc on the small town and the local university. Triassic Attack stars Raoul Trujillo (True Blood, Tin Man) and Steven Brand (Scorpion King). A production of UFO International Productions.
As part of the Syfy Saturday Dino Night during the Thanksgiving Day Weekend, Jurassic Park will lead into Triassic Attack beginning at 6PM (ET/PT).
By Karen Moul
Syfy continues to shake up the schedule and expand beyond its sci-fi roots with new and different programming, and things got very different this month when WWE Friday Night SmackDown premiered on October 1.
While many have had trouble understanding the move, SmackDown could be a shrewd move for Syfy as the network looks to expand into other entertainment platforms, including gaming. SmackDown is a big draw among a critical audience, males aged 18-49. If the existing WWE audience makes its way over to Syfy, the network has the opportunity to engage them in other Syfy programs and grow its overall audience.
It's a good move for WWE too. By joining Syfy, Friday Night SmackDown is now part of the NBC Universal family. That means considerable marketing across NBC platforms which include such properties as USA, Telemundo, the Universal theme parks, and Hulu. Opportunities for cross promotion are almost endless.
So far SmackDown is settling into its new home nicely. The ratings for the past four weeks have been pretty solid and SmackDown continues to be a top five show among males 18-34. It was actually down a bit last week (October 22), but the Major League Baseball playoffs over on TBS have been stiff competition. Nevertheless, SmackDown was the number two cable show among males 18-49, behind the final game of the Yankees-Rangers series. It will be interesting to see what happens after the World Series when viewing habits get back to normal.
Meanwhile, the WWE crew is getting comfortable in their new digs. "We have a whole new audience now with Syfy," says two time women's champion Beth Phoenix, "and I feel like WWE is just as excited to cross over with them as they are to have us cross over." Superstar Cody Rhodes is taking the crossover very seriously - in August he was a guest star on Warehouse 13.
Beth Phoenix and·Kofi Kingston recently met with journalists to discuss life as WWE Superstars. Two of the most engaging performers on the press tour, they discussed everything from diet and exercise to their favorite Syfy shows.
By Karen Moul
Caution - Spoilers!It looks like AMC might have a hit with The Walking Dead, the new six-part series based on the comic books by Robert Kirkman. Sunday night's opener drew 5.3 million viewers, more than any series premiere this year on any cable network, according to SpoilerTV. It was also the highest audience for any series ever on AMC (the season finale of Mad Men drew half as many viewers.) Most critics seem to think if AMC can hold a good chunk of that audience, a renewal is likely.
This show deserves it. AMC has assembled a dream production team that includes Kirkman, writer/director/producer Frank Darabont (The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile), and effects and makeup guru Greg Nicotero, whose credits include more than a hundred feature films. Together they created a show that satisfies die-hard zombie fans as well as viewers new to Kirkman's story. And the network has clearly put some money into this show - great production values, great special effects (for TV), great music. The zombies look awesome.
Halloween Horror Nights XX: Twenty Years of Fear
, one of the nation's best and most intense Halloween events, opened at Universal Orlando Resorts last month. For twenty four nights (through October 31st) Universal Studios Florida transforms into a place of horror where guests will face their deepest fears. Every year there are special "icons" of terror that showcase the event. Halloween Horror Nights XX
is about Fear himself. It is not a anniversary event. Every year Halloween Horror Nights
creates a unique experience for its guests, which is why people travel from around the world to experience it. This year, Halloween Horror Nights
in Orlando boasts eight all-new haunted houses as well as new scare zones and live shows. So even if you have come in the past, you have not seen everything Halloween Horror Nights
has to offer.
Syfy's hit reality show, Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files
, returns tonight. The team chooses two cases to investigate. Ben Hansen, Austin Porter, and Chi-Lan Lieu, investigate a strange mist that seems to have a mind of its own at McPike Mansion in Alton, Illinois. Meanwhile, Bill Murphy, Jael de Pardo, and Larry Caughlan, Jr. investigate a delta shaped UFO sighting in Fremont, California.
Ben Hansen and Jael de Pardo sat down earlier in the week with the digital press to talk about their show and its upcoming premiere, which airs tonight at 10pm ET/PT.
Following on the heels of the success of Syfy's Battlestar Galactica, Caprica, it's spin-off and prequel, first aired in January of this year. The series tells the tale of how the Cylons came to be -- at the hands of humans. The show stars Eric Stoltz as Daniel Graystone and Esai Morales as Joseph Adama. Two fathers who have lost their daughters, one of them who will stop at nothing to bring her back, regardless to the cost to humanity. The series also stars Alessandra Torresani as Zoe Graystone, Magda Apanowicz as Lacy, Polly Walker as Sister Clarice Willow, and Sasha Roiz as Sam Adama.
The second half of the first season of Caprica premiered earlier this month.
Ronald D. Moore and David Eick, executive producers of the series, who will also be producing the upcoming Battlestar Galactica spin-off, Battlestar Galactica: Blood and Chrome, took part in a panel at the digital press conference in Orlando, Florida, to discuss the series and its future.
Syfy's summer reality hit, Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files
, is back for season 1.5. The series follows a team of investigators as they discover the truth behind unexplained and "paranormal" videos. The team includes Ben Hansen, a former special agent of the FBI, scientist Bill Murphy, journalist Jael de Pardo, effects specialist Larry Caughlan, Jr., photography expert Chi-Lan Lieu, and stunt expert Austin Porter. They use their expertise, as well as CSI-like techniques to try to recreate the videos to prove whether they are fact, faked, or sometimes simply misidentified.
In Orlando, Flordia, in a recent press tour, Ben Hansen, Bill Murphy, and Jael de Pardo sat down to discuss their hit show.
By Karen Moul
Syfy has partnered with online apparel retailer Her Universe to create a line of women's clothing, jewelry and other items based on Syfy properties. Syfy President Dave Howe announced the partnership this month at the Syfy digital press tour in Orlando. "From a brand perspective, it sends the right messages about what we want to stand for, which is a business that is for everyone with platforms that reach out to everybody. It's very exciting."
Ashley Eckstein, founder of Her Universe, is best known to fans as the voice of Ahsoka Tano on Star Wars: The Clone Wars. She launched the company this summer with the first line of Star Wars apparel designed specifically for women. "In the past," said Eckstein, "a lot of [science fiction-oriented] merchandise was created for women more as an afterthought. They just took an image, slapped it on a pink T-shirt, and said, "Oh, the girls will buy it." And that's not what we want. We want some of the same cool images, just put on a really flattering V-neck."
"Almost half of all Syfy fans are women." she continued, "and they weren't giving us anything to buy."
Currently, Her Universe aspparel is targeted to a broad age range, with sizes ranging from extra small up through plus sizes. "It's definitely not a junior's line. Our items are fashionable and fitted but pretty true to size." She plans several new Star Wars items for Christmas, including a set of Boba Fett underoos.
Syfy gear will be available in 2011 at conventions such as ComicCon. The line will be available in retail outlets in 2012. Plans call for apparel [to] highlight Syfy programs such as Caprica, Battlestar Galactica, Warehouse 13, Destination Truth, and Eureka.
The panel also discussed other aspects of Syfy Ventures, which are available in the previous article. Eckstein answered questions for journalists at the digital press tour, which can be read in the full transcript below. Please also read the press release at Her Universe.
By Karen Moul
At last week’s digital press tour, Syfy executives Dave Howe, Alan Seiffert, and Craig Engler discussed the network’s plans to diversify across multiple entertainment platforms. It’s all part of Syfy Ventures, the network's business development and enterprise unit that focuses on next generation brand extension, including both media and non-media properties.
In a panel with journalists, Howe described the Syfy's plans "to create 24/7 immersive, dynamic storytelling experiences so that we can create transmedia IP characters and stories that can live on any platform, not just the cable linear TV platform." What does that mean to Syfy fans? How about gaming, apparel, and even a new channel for kids?
Syfy’s gaming projects are already well underway, with a close eye on storytelling. “In the gaming space,” said Seiffert, “we've really focused on what possible stories are out there that can really satisfy the needs of our audience but also still offer content in a very unique way. And in a way that is very appropriate for Syfy.”
First up is a two-hour TV movie (and perhaps an eventual series) based on THQ's Red Faction, the popular first-person shooter set on Mars. "Red Faction was a great shoot-'em-up -- it's a really exciting console game,” said Sieffert. “What's unique about it is the movie and hopefully the series will actually live between the last game and the next game. So it becomes part of the overall mythology.”
Down the road, Syfy looks forward to an online browser game based on Battlestar Galactica, which is set to debut in December. Also in the works is a partnership with game developer Trion World to create an online game that would also become a Syfy TV series.
Future plans also call for Syfy to reach out to kids ages 8 to 12 across multiple platforms. "Kids aren't just watching TV," said Seiffert. "They're not just engaging in playing toys. And they're not just online. They're doing all of that. So…we're not going to approach it just as another television show. Absolutely, there will be TV...but there also will be gaming. There will be toys. There will be a pretty massive and exciting online world. The idea is let's bring these stories, let's bring these experiences in a meaningful way across platforms because that's where kids are."
Finally, the executives discussed Syfy's efforts to reach out to female fans through branded apparel, jewelry, and other gear. More information about that is available in the next article.
For more details on Syfy Ventures, read the complete panel transcript below.
, one of Syfy's new documentary-reality series, follows Joe Maddalena, owner of Profiles in History, as he searches for Hollywood memorabilia. He deals in all kinds of Hollywood treasures, including original props and costumes from movies and television.
On the show Maddalena and his team travel the world tracking down rare and highly valued collectibles of Hollywood history. At the conclusion of the episodes they auction of the items to collectors.
In a recent press tour in Orlando, Florida, Maddalena sat down, along with Mark Stern, to talk about his new show, which premieres October 27th on Syfy, and to show off some of his favorite items.
Syfy's original series, Eureka
, first premiered in the summer of 2006, and by the following year became Syfy's (at the time SCI FI) most watched series. The series focuses on the small town of geniuses called Eureka, where mayhem always ensues. Sheriff Jack Carter (Colin Ferguson) tries to keep the town together with the help of Deputy Jo Lupo (Erica Cerra), Dr. Allison Blake (Salli Richardson-Whitfield), Henry Deacon (Joe Morton), Douglas Fargo (Neil Grayston), and other members of the town. The fourth season centers around the fact that after traveling to 1946, the five characters, along with Dr. Trevor Grant (James Callis), return to find things completely different from when they left it, with Fargo now in charge of Global Dynamics.
Another original series, Warehouse 13
, centers on a top-secret storage facility and the Secret Service agents, Pete Lattimer (Eddie McClintock) and Myka Bering (Joanne Kelly), and their friends that run it. Their job is to find artifacts that have supernatural (or sometimes mundane) powers and return them to the warehouse. They are led by their boss Artie Nielsen (Saul Rubinek), the warehouse caretaker, and joined by agent-in-training Claudia Donovan, played by Allison Scagliotti.
This season, Syfy's two most popular shows ran crossover episodes -- the first on Warehouse 13
, when Fargo travels to the warehouse to assist with an update of their computer systems. Later, Claudia visits Eureka
(where the "purple goo" used in the warehouse is manufactured) when objects from 1946 start appearing in the present.
Both series will be airing special Christmas themed episodes on Tuesday, December 7th. Eureka
will air at 9pm ET/PT followed by Warehouse 13
at 10pm ET/PT. Official press releases for both Eureka
and Warehouse 13
Neil Grayston has appeared on television in the past on various series such as Smallville
. He had reoccuring roles in the series Edgemont
, as well as starred in Godiva
, for which he was nominated for a Leo Award (Canada). Besides playing the role of Fargo, Grayston also is the voice of S.A.R.A.H, the artificial intelligence that runs the sheriff's household, on Eureka.
Allison Scagliotti began acting at eleven with her role in the pilot America's Most Terrible Things
. She has previously appeared in series such as ER
, One Tree Hill,
, but is probably best known for her work on Nickelodeon's Drake & Josh
. Scagliotti also won an award at the BendFilm Festival for her work in Redemption Maddie
(AFI). She will also be starring in the upcoming film Losers Take All,
to be released next year.
Grayston and Scagliotti sat down to talk to the digital media about their series and the upcoming holiday episodes during a press tour in Orlando, Florida last Monday.
Syfy's original series Sanctuary returned this Friday, with the start of its all-new 20-episode season. The third season premiere continued where last season left off with the Sanctuary team trying to reach Kali and prevent catastrophe. The series stars Amanda Tapping as Dr. Helen Magnus, Robin Dunne as Dr. Will Zimmerman, Agam Darshi as Kate Freelander, Ryan Robbins as Henry Foss, and Christopher Heyerdahl as John Druitt and "Biggie." This season will also feature an episode arc with guest star Polly Walker (Caprica, Rome).
Sanctuary shoots almost entirely on green screen and has phenominal visual effects which were previously nominated for an Emmy Award in 2008.
Robin Dunne is known for previously appearing on television series such as Dawson's Creek, Dead Like Me, CSI: Miami, and NCIS. He has also been part of movies such as The Skulls II, American Psycho II, and Beyond Sherwood Forest.
Dunne as well as Syfy executives Erika Kennair and Mark Stern sat down with the media on Monday at the Syfy Digital Press Tour in Orlando, Florida to discuss this groundbreaking series.
By Karen Moul
SyFy’s hit series Caprica
returns with new episodes this week! An unexpected highlight of season 1 has been Sasha Roiz’s portrayal of Sam Adama, strongman for the Ha’la’tha crime syndicate and uncle to future Battlestar Galactica Admiral William Adama. The first nine episodes left fans wanting more of the happily-married hit man, and we’re told that season 1.5 will reveal more of Sam’s backstory and the events that have made him the most complex gangster in all the Twelve Colonies.
Recently, Sasha Roiz made time to speak with us about the new season.
Eric Roberts began acting at age 5 in a local theater company. He studied drama at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London at age 17. Two years later he continued his schooling in the American Academy in New York. Roberts started his television career over 35 years ago in soap operas such as Another World
. Since then his career flourished and he has appeared in many movies, such as The Dark Knight
and The Expendables
. He has also appeared in television series, such as the Starz series Crash
, and The Young and the Restless
Declan O'Brien has directed multiple films, including Rock Monster
, Monster Ark
, and the thriller Wrong Turn 3
. He served as writer on the first two and also for other movies such as The Snake King
. He was also the executive producer for the television series Call of the Wild
as well as Alice Upside Down
, a movie he also wrote the story for.
Roberts and O'Brien sat down to talk to the digital media about their adventure working on Sharktopus
Eddie McClintock is known for his humor on Syfy's Warehouse 13
, but he has been in the business for awhile and was first a wrestler and a production assistant before he became an actor. He has starred in the television series Holding the Baby
and Stark Raving Mad.
He has worked on various other series, such as House
, Desperate Housewives
, and Bones
, and appeared in films such as The Sweetest Thing
and Full Frontal.
Saul Rubinek started his career early as a child actor in theater and radio in Canada. He has a long accomplished resume in acting spanning over forty years. He has worked on television in series such as Frasier
, Curb Your Enthusiasm
, and Stargate SG-1
, with even a small role on the popular series Lost
. He has appeared in movies such as Unforgiven
with Clint Eastwood, True Romance
, and The Family Man
. Rubinek has also served as director on a few movies, including Jerry and Tom
, which he also produced and acted in.
On Warehouse 13
Eddie McClintock plays Pete Lattimer, who once worked for the secret service, who now works at the top-secret warehouse finding and returning strange artifacts. Saul Rubinek plays Artie Nielson, the caretaker of the warehouse, and Pete's boss.
The two sat down with the digital media to discuss Warehouse 13
and its second season finale, airing tonight at 9/8 central on Syfy.
CCH Pounder is probably best known for her role of Claudette Wyms on FX's The Shield,
but has appeared in many popular television shows such as The X-Files
, and Millennium
, and more recently The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency
. Pounder has also been in films such as Face/Off
, and James Cameron's Avatar
. She has also appeared on Broadway in Open Admissions
Recently Pounder joined the cast of Warehouse 13
where she plays the mysterious Mrs. Frederic.
On September 13th, Pounder sat down with media outlets to talk about her role on the series.