Farscape 2009 Los Angeles Reunion Convention Coverage

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Hi Farscape Fans!

Below is our detailed report of the Farscape Reunion panel. I hope you all enjoy readinlogo_FS_sml2g about the panel from the 2009 Los Angeles Farscape Convention!

On Saturday afternoon, MeaganSue and I attended the Farscape Reunion panel at the Creation Entertainment 2009 Los Angeles Farscape Convention. The panel hosted three stars of the show, Lani Tupu (Captain Crais, Pilot), Gigi Edgley (Chiana) and Wayne Pygram (Scorpius).  They appeared on November 07, 2009 at the Marriot hotel near the Los Angeles International Airport known as LAX.

2009-LA-FSCon - Images Courtesy Creation Entertainment


These areas of the transcription may contain in brackets the phrase [inaudible] to denote such sections where transcription was not possible.

Lani: Hasn’t time flown? I just want to say thank you. Thank you Gary for inviting us, and for having invited us the first time to Los Angeles, which was fantastic, so here we are again. I’ve grown a few white hairs and I’ve burnt them. So we’re here seeing some familiar faces and some new faces. It’s wonderful to be here. So thank you for tuning into the show and thank you for being with us!

2009-LA-Farscape - Images courtesy Creation Entertainment

Gigi: We’re glad you guys all survived last night. Bit early. There does seem to be a few missing. Are they still in bed? Ah, they do it to you every time. But yeah, thank you guys! Thank you Adam and Gary for having us and having faith in us. We love these conventions. It’s always so awesome to meet the fans and meet the viewers and people who have supported us and really encouraged our dreams. We love dressing up and playing make-believe, so thanks for watching us!

2009-LA-Farscape Ms. Gigi Edgley - Chiana

Wayne: Yes, thank you very much. I do apologize that I wasn’t here last night. I’m feeling better now. Yes, thank you Adam and Gary. How good does Adam look? Have a look at him. He’s looking fantastic. Thank you very, very much for having us. It’s great to see some familiar faces out here. It’s ten years since we first began this journey. Obviously, one way or another, it’s always been a part of our lives – our lives and your lives. So thank you very much. If we have time at the end, I figure I should probably get something out of my red shopping bag to give to you to make up for last night. I had some chills. I was going to do some Australian folk songs. The thing about Australian folk songs is they’re all about beer. We’ll see if we can get Lani and Gigi to help.

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G: Brace yourselves.

W: We’ll manage without the guitar, I think. We’ll see how it goes. So what do you want us to do then? Just ramble on or…?

G: So do we have any questions out there? Or have we answered them all over these ten years? Run to the mic! It’s like a Springer show! Don’t beat anyone up!

Q: What’s the state of the film industry down under these days?

L: Well, to put it this way, there’s a major drought. I think we all know what happened globally and financially and it had a big impact. Of course, now that the Australian dollar has bounced back to ninety, it has meant that there are less productions coming down to Australia. So I don’t really see any major American productions for some years now. Well, yes, they’ll probably go to New Zealand.

Q: For some time there was a flush of production there.

L: We’ve got a new head of film finance. There are eighteen films that have come out – Australian films – so LA-Farscape2009 - LaniTupu - Craisit’s looking good from that point of view. We’ve got that cultural thing where a lot of Australians still stay away from seeing their own movies. However, Australian movies really have great critical acclaim overseas and in America. So from that point of view, it’s pretty dry. Television production has slowed down as well. It all goes through cycles. However, Gigi’s in a production.

G: Yay! I can tell you that it’s definitely been quiet. I didn’t return to Australia until…I was living in Los Angeles and I put my audition for Rescue down in LA and I emailed it through and then I forgot about it. And I studied for it and I researched for it, but you do a couple of auditions a day, quite a few a week, so you’re pumping them out left, right and center, so I put a fair bit of time into it. I didn’t think too much because if you invest too much then you lose ten other jobs. Then I went home for Christmas and that’s when they said, “Listen, Rescue wants to see you again.” And I went, “Who?” They said, “You know, that show Rescue, it’s a Channel Nine series and Southern Star.” I was like, “Oh, wow, that’s fantastic!” So I went in for another casting. It was weird because usually in Australian television I’ve only ever had to go in once or twice and I think I had to go in three more times because with the state of the industry, I think they were really looking for the big names and the juicy actors that are really going to shine out there. Every channel you put on there’s a reality show, American television and Home and Away, which is fine, but it’s not necessarily great. But I know that we finished the series and it’s had pretty decent ratings. It’s got a very strong cast and it’s shot very beautifully. I don’t know if there’s any newcomers, but if you do want to check it out, you can log onto the Channel Nine website, and you can actually watch full length episodes of Rescue Special Ops, if you’re into it. So we’ve had a very successful series and it looks like they’re going again but we’re still waiting for that. There always seems to be that time chunk in whatever production we do, but we find out mid-December if it’s 150% go-ahead. But it definitely has been very sparse in between jobs, I have to say.

L: We’ve just had another medical show close about a week ago which was running for eleven years. So they pulled the plug on that one. So wait and see.

W: I have a feeling that thin2009-LA-Farscape - Wayne Pygram - Scorpiusgs have improved a little bit, but as Lani and Gigi have mentioned, when we started Farscape, there were thousand-dollar differences. Today it’s probably about ninety-five cents. There’s two shows being made in New Zealand; Legend of the Seeker and Spartacus. I think Rowan Woods, who was one of our directors is on one of those shows. So a lot of that work that would’ve come from Australia is now in New Zealand… But me, myself, I’ve moved to the country. I’ve got some photos here I’ll pass around to you. There’s a baby in the back and I keep looking at the baby. I became a dad three years ago and it’s changed my life completely. I got married in January as well. Little bit of work but not much at all. I haven’t exactly taken myself out of the loop, but I’m living in a world where it’s a bit of a hindrance.

Q: First, I’d like to say, I don’t think there’s nearly enough leather on that stage.

G: I know, we’re naked up here.

Q: Why don’t each one of you tell us what was your favourite scene to do in Farscape?

L: Well, among many favourite scenes, I think one of the memories I hold very dear to me is actually walking on the set on the first day, which was produced at Fox Studios, and it was the first and last television show ever produced at Fox Studios. I think Tom Cruise came in the following year with Mission Impossible 2. But walking on this amazing set, which was elevated about eight feet off the ground and it was the Command Center of the ship that I was meant to be controlling, and I remember waiting for the camera to roll and I walked through the door into the Command Center here and I remember, “Stand by! Roll camera! Take one! Action!” And I hadn’t judged the time correctly, and I banged my head on the door that was rising. It was like, “Welcome to Farscape!” That was one of the first memories. It was fantastic seeing this camera on this massive crane swoop down and I think one of the lines was, “Fire!” So that was great. There were so many memories that I have, but the other, skipping right to the end of the show was my last day on Farscape, where I was in Talyn, and that was amazing. Now there’s only one time where the camera crew actually stepped forward in front the camera and that is really your last day. It hadn’t really occurred to me until that time how long we’d been working on the show. You know, they were family. So I remember that day very, very well. Talking to Talyn was kind of crazy. You’re talking to a wall.

2009-LA-Farscape Convention

G: Like Lani said, there’s so many awesome moments that you have. I don’t know if you can narrow it down, but the make-up, the costumes, the flying spaceships, going to other worlds, seeing when the computer graphic guys would come on set and we were just acting in front of a green screen and they would show you the world that you’re in. You’re like, “Whoa…” and it all started to make sense. Just working with an amazing guest cast. We had such cool guest casts because it was the show to be on in Australia. Everyone wanted to fly a spaceship. So we had such phenomenal people who were my idols growing up and all of the sudden, you were teaching them how to work with Rygel and figuring out how to do alien talk with them and all that kind of stuff, so it was really just a magical production to be on. One of the really amazing things was that we were together for such a long time that by the end of it, everyone was just a family and that was a really beautiful thing. You felt safe and it was a really good working environment that you could allow yourself to fully endow your choices and really get down and dirty and really get the good stuff out. I think that we challenged each other. In that way, I think that’s what separated Farscape from a lot of other shows that I’ve worked on.

W: It was a family. I think it is rare to form an attachment to it, I suppose, and to feel as though your contribution is really valued. For me, it’s impossible to name a scene, but one of the things…there’s many aspects of Farscape that you don’t normally get to work with in serial television, such as green screens. So I used to love a lot of the big set pieces, like coming down the waterfall stairs, and things like that. That particular set piece had, I think, six cameras running and we had one go. It took five hours to set up and five minutes to shoot. It was just a wonderful thing to know that so many people were investing in this one shot. And if I eff it up, it can all be sorted out. But the set pieces were lots and lots of fun because it really brought out the team contribution. It doesn’t happen often that Aussie TV has provided so much for the imagination or the world you’re playing in to invest in these big wonderful set pieces.

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L: I actually remember that scene, Wayne, very well because we’re all standing by, waiting, and they roll cameras and action was called, and you were walking towards the stairs and you took the first step, the second step, and there was so much water that was just pouring down onto the set. I remember seeing you, I think you just stood on the second step.

W: I did lose my grip. Lani’s right, you’ll see me, I messed up. I don’t know if that was the time, but there was a moment of, “I’m going down.” It didn’t happen, thankfully, and I think it is in that moment that I stopped. Thankfully, I did stop. We didn’t have that much money that we could do it all twice. And water is something that is a precious commodity in Australia.

Q: Gigi, congratulations from the family.

G: I thought you were going to get mad at me about my shoes again. Oh you didn’t see my shoe?

Q: Yeah I saw it.

G: He always gets mad at me because I jump around in my high heels and yesterday I was walking and I lost the sole of my shoe. So I got some crazy glue and my beautiful fiancé mended it for me, but he’s not here today, so this is my mend job. I’m out of glue, so if anyone’s got some spare glue… If you can’t fix it, tape it! Thank you very much. It’s a very magical time, and it’s a very special thing to share with you guys as well because you guys have watched me grow and change and learn. It was very cool to introduce Jamie to you. It was a very special night for me last night.

W: I knew nothing about this. Fantastic!

Q: Wayne, you actually have sort of answered my question. What are you doing now?

W: I have been working for the last six weeks on a show called Underbelly. Each season is a different story 2009-Wayne Pygram - Harveyand it’s about corruption, rogue coppers, gangsters, etc. So I’m actually playing the police commissioner on the latest Underbelly. We only just finished it, but aside from that, I think I’ve only had about four days this year. So I actually have been working. It feels good to go into work. It’s not regularly, but at least I have a couple of hours of work. It’s a great show.

G: It’s a great show guys. I don’t know if you know it, but Australia went nuts for this show. It’s just really cool. Everybody really loved it. It was really gritty.

W: We have an underbelly of crime in Australia that touches on politics and policing, etc. The first series was set in Melbourne around two crime families. It was a huge success. Then they put another one together going back to the seventies in a town called Griffith, which is about two hours from where I live now. Griffith has a huge Italian community. It’s known as the town of Brass Castles. They grow a lot of pot in Griffith. It was the town in Australia where marijuana was produced. A politician by the name of Donald Mackay made a lot of noise; he was very vocal about what was happening in the town. A lot of huge mansions were being built, surrounded by barbed wire. He disappeared and that was their mistake, by knocking out a politician. Basically the whole town was turned upside-down. To this day, Griffith still has the taint of corruption. A guy, Barbaro, nabbed three years ago. He’s got a commune in Griffith. Basically he’s got a home with barbed wire everywhere and security and they got him in connection with the biggest ecstasy bust in Australian history. So Griffith still has this criminal family background. But the one I’m in is set in Sydney. It’s about drugs and prostitution and corrupt coppers who ran the cross – the cross is like the red-light district of Sydney – their connection to politicians and judges. I play a police commissioner who was totally straight, but he was very old-fashioned. I wouldn’t say he allowed corruption to bloom around him, but it did bloom around him because he had his head in the sand and didn’t believe that things could be as bad as they were. Already, I’m not supposed to talk about these things. This show is so sensitive; they won’t even courier the scripts. You go into the office and they give them to you by hand. It’s a pain in the ass because it’s almost five hours away. So I have to go up to Sydney for them to hand me the scripts because there’s still court cases going on in relation to the characters that are mentioned. They’re already planning another one already. There are many stories to be told. Even just this year the two warring families in Melbourne…the boss of one of these families shot her son-in-law. As I said, the stories are ongoing. But anyway, it’s been fun to go back to work.


Q: This is more for Gigi…What is the current state of Nobody Knows?

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G: Nobody knows! Nobody Knows…When I was living in Los Angeles, I did a couple of films and I’ve always had a pretty decent run in Australia at jobs, so when I got to LA, I was kind of shell-shocked. I wasn’t used to not being recognized, I was just not known. I’m not used to not walking into a room and having people go, “Oh hi Gigi! How’s it going?” and they give you a good try at it. I was like, “Oh my god, wow, I’m really starting from scratch!” It was a really cool adventure for me to go into. It was very humbling. So I did a couple of films and I thought, in between auditions and everything, maybe I’ll have a shot at directing myself. And because the writer’s strike happened and auditions were quite sparse at that time, I thought, “Well this is a perfect time,” because actors were out of work, writers were out of work, producers were out of work. Pretty much everything in the industry was slowing down. I gathered all these people that were in town and actors that I knew, and Dean Haglund is in it and David Franklin. Chris helped literally build half the spaceship and he was assistant director and continuity and craft services and pretty much everything. So I got a great crew of people and a cast of twenty-four and over two weekends, we made this film called Nobody Knows. It’s about a girl who lives in a fantasy world pretty much, but as her day job, she works on a sci-fi. I don’t know where the story came from. I thought it was a really interesting story from some of the moments I’ve had in Los Angeles. I tell my parents and I tell my friends and they’re like, “You’ve got to make something out of this. You should write a funny book because they’re just so unbelievable.” But the status of Nobody Knows at the moment is actually, it’s married to two comic book series I’m also co-writing. So, we shot it and it’s in post-production and we’ve edited it, and we’ve got two little two minute sequences that I was so desperate to do computer graphics with, and the guy that I co-directed it with said, “No, are you crazy?” He’s a beautiful French director and he said, “No, no, no Gigi! You cannot do this! Gigi, you’re crazy!” And I said, “Oh, say my name again!” And he goes, “It’s going to cost so much money!” and all this stuff and I’m like, “Oh, no, I’ve seen it on Farscape! It just happens!” Well, this film wasn’t being financed by the Henson Company, it was financed by the Edgley lack-of company. So it was all coming out of my pocket. It was great, I got a sponsorship from Panavision and I got to shoot it on super-sixteen. It looks amazing. So I took it to some computer graphic guys I know in Sydney and they couldn’t work with the footage. So on Monday and Tuesday I’m going into the studio and we’re going to actually reprocess it in high-definition, which I think is going to cost about a couple of grand! So I’m selling autographs out there! You’ll all be producers! But yeah, Monday and Tuesday we’re putting it into high-definition and we’re going to put it on hard-drives. But I would say definitely by January, February, March, you will have the finished product, so I’ll post it up on my website. So if we have a Final Final Frelling Frelling Final Frelling Frelling Farscape Convention, you’re guaranteed to have it there.

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Q: The question is for Lani. Knowing that you’re the voice of Pilot, I still can’t believe it, and I keep saying, “I’m not going to believe it until I see it in person.” Where did that voice come from and maybe if you could do it, that would be totally awesome?

L: (In Pilot’s voice) Commander Crichton! (In his normal voice again) I don’t know where the voice came from. I had been offered the role of Captain Crais, I had auditioned for D’Argo…

G: Wait a minute. Oh, what could’ve been…

L: (In a sexy, suggestive tone) I know. (Back to his normal voice again) As soon as Anthony had gotten the role, I thought, “Well at least I’m not going to be the one who’s waking up at three o’clock or four o’clock in the morning. He did a fantastic job and there is only one D’Argo. But I was offered Crais and I really didn’t know his journey until I looked at what’s called the bible – a huge book of notes on each character. Then somebody asked me to go and audition for Pilot. When I went in, I had a couple of ideas in the back of my head, but as I was auditioning, it fell into a higher register, because I knew that I wanted Crais to be way down on a lower register. This name popped into my head, and it was John Hurt, a British actor, and somehow, as I was doing the audition, it just kept moving up towards that area and it stayed that way. I had no idea until I’d finished the audition. Then after that, my agent called me and said, “You have the role of Pilot as well.” Which was wonderful. There are very few actors who are given not one role, but two roles in any show at any one time. It’s fantastic. It’s a blessing. So, I had fun with both roles.

Q: Gigi, my question for you is, Crichton refers to you as Pip…

G: Oh is this coming up? Because it always comes up and I still haven’t figured it out myself.

Q: Well, I know Marcel Marceau, his persona on stage was Pip, so I was wondering if that was it or, I know also in gambling parties the little marks on the dice are called pips. I was just wondering, with the grey and dark eyes, if that was how it developed.

G: I think we’ve got to figure out what time Ben’s on the stage tomorrow. I think we need to seriously, once and for all, get down to the bottom of this! It’s quite odd because my nickname as a kid was Pip, but nobody knows that, so I don’t know if I taste fruity or what… I don’t know where it came from and where it went, but if you ask him, when he tells you the answer, please let me know.

Q: Lani, if you can possibly recall, when Crais first goes on Talyn and Aeryn goes on Talyn with you, there seems to be some dialogue that we practically put our ear up to the television to get. What is he saying? I’m just wondering if it was a bit of Peacekeeper dialogue that he had with Aeryn that we were just not made privy to.

L: I can’t answer that because I would actually have to see the scene.

G: You guys are going to go, “This is the worst panel ever!”

L: If someone can bring it up today or tomorrow, I’ll have a look at it because I can’t remember what I said ten years ago. Yes, I’m sorry, I can’t answer that for you.

G: No comment.

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L: Just ask Browder. Browder has all the answers!

Q: In the scene where Crichton, Crais and all the rest of them are destroying the command carrier and you both have the bracelets on, you take a dagger and plunge it into your arm to break the bond with him, he’s suffering from the pain but Scorpius is not. Is the justification somewhere that he severed some kind of nerve within himself that made him immune to pain? What actually happened?

L: Good question.

W: Think of the realm of voodoo dolls. Scorpy is the doll. A lot of those moments, we don’t get a chance to think about them too much. You do it and often we really leave it up to the imagination of the audience so they can figure out why and how. But I don’t think I’ve answered the question.

G: It’s the same kind of line of thinking where no one really knows how those coms really worked. Some people would talk up here, and some people would tap them, and some people would double-tap them, and some people would twirl them and everyone had a different way of going about it. And sometimes, no one used them at all! So I know that question came up in one of my first Farscape conventions. “How do those coms really work?” I’m like, “You tell me! And everybody else in the cast!”

Q: This is actually for all three of you. Each of you brought in sexual techniques that were used for vastly different things. How much of that was you and how much was written?

L: It was always there. You know, it’s crazy because we were blessed with wonderful writing. When an actor gets a great script, all they have to do is just say the lines, invest what you can with it and bring to it something of yourself and however you chose to play it. We’re so lucky that the writers actually saw what we did and wrote more. All the underlying stuff that was there, I’m sure, each one of us brought our own stuff to it and they liked it and continued to do that.

G: No comment.

W: I never thought of it in a sexuality terms. I would be swinging around in black leather and high heels… You know, we did have those scenes with Natira, but I’ve always thought of him as being sort of asexual. He’s not someone who has those sort of bonding relationships. He will use his sexuality as a tool but he wouldn’t be frustrated in any way, but I saw him as someone who actually didn’t have sexuality. But, the image of him obviously lends itself to personal notions. Which is wonderful. You can’t help but feel a bit turned on.

G: And then they add the handcuffs and electric collars and you go from there. Next question?

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Q: Wayne, I wanted to ask you about your performances of Harvey versus Scorpius. Can you say a little bit about how you differentiated them; how you made them into separate characters, even just through the performance because I don’t think the dialogue didn’t make them as differentiated as I think they appear on the screen?

W: My voice, in very simple terms. I was just trying to have as much fun as possible, indulge myself as much as possible in a flamboyant way and I indulged myself in a contained way in the Scorpius realm. I’d get out there and make it as crazy as possible. Harvey was very over the top and ostentatious and then Scorpy was more contained.

Q: Which one was more fun to play?

W: Neither was more fun but I used to love doing the Harvey stuff because there wasn’t one Harvey, there were many different Harveys. So it was always a lovely experience to go into work and play Harvey. And I did get to wear all the gear as well, which was fantastic.  So it was fun because it really just lent itself to it. It was fresh, whenever they’d come up with a new Harvey persona or whatever it happened to be. I’m not someone who’s normally thought of as being a comedic actor, so I got the opportunity to play some comedy as well.

Q: This is for all three of you. I know that you’ve done scenes together, but as couples, were there any memorable scenes that have stuck with you as well? Like Wayne and Gigi, Gigi and Lani or Lani and Wayne?

L: I remember a scene with Wayne and I think David Franklin was in the scene as well, where his phone went off. Not once, not twice…Remember? David Franklin’s phone? Three times. Wayne and I had some great dramatic scenes together and it was wonderful and we were working so fast and we really didn’t have too much time to think, which is probably a very good thing. As an actor, you just go, “Right, here you go. Standby, we just need to walk through for camera.” And then that was that. To me, it was just like jazz. We all knew what we had to do. We all had fun trying to learn our scripts. The cameras would roll…

W: For me, I got to work with everyone in scenes, but obviously my relationship with Crichton screen time-wise was the biggest part of my contribution. Most of my days with Mr. Browder were always fun. It was always very satisfying and those were my most memorable days, I suppose. That was the person I worked with the most. We generally had a really great time, except for the day I made him bleed.

G: What happened?!

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W: Aussies are known for a bit of roughhousing in general, but when it comes to the acting department, technique-wise we’re a bit untrained. So it’s like, if you’re going to be someone up, you beat them up. I made our star bleed one day and he wasn’t very pleased.

G: And one day I just put fingerprints on him and I got gloves in the next scene!  My very first day in Durka Returns, for some crazy reason, they didn’t give me gloves. My fingers were painted white, so you could see these little paw prints all over the set where I’d been. When we did that big scene where Ben lifted me up…this is like my second scene with Ben and he picked me up by the crotch and by the bosom and lifted me over his head and I was like, “Oh, nice to meet you too!” And as we did that, my little fingers went on his shoulders and at the end of the scene he was like, “Costume!” So, not long after that, I was awarded a nice little pair of gloves. We always had bits and passes and I’m trying to think… I remember a scene that wasn’t in front of the camera with Lani. But you probably don’t want to know about that one.

L: Next question…

(Audience yells “Tell!”)

W: I’ve had two other experiences at work. One of them was one of my first TV jobs, we were playing some SSS military goons (inaudible). Many years later, I had the good fortune of working with Heath Ledger and he opened me up – got me good across the top of the nose. So Aussies, we lack technique. We just like hurting people, I suppose.

G: Like a therapy session when we go to work. The moment that I…it’s not nearly as naughty as it sounds. We could endow it a bit. I was sharing your room because I was a guest cast member when I came on and Lani had a scene for the day. You came in later in the day and I was finished for the day. I was in a not-too-becoming position pulling off my bodysuit and Lani walked right in! And he went, “Oh! I thought this was my room!” And I went, “Oh! I thought this was my room! Hi! I’m Gigi!” And that was pretty much our first moment.

L: Never to be repeated, unfortunately.

G: And one time I had a scene with you, it was down in the tunnels. It was with the chain, that horrible chain! And I looked at Wayne and he was just bringing up the goods – all sorts of stuff coming out of your mouth and I’m like, “Man, this guy rocks!” And I was handcuffed and he was drooling. It was with Grayza, Crichton, Bracca and you and it was that skurnak (phonetic) episode – was it skurnak? (Audience replies “Arnesk”) Exactly! That’s what I was saying! It was the accent. You misread me. So I remember that was kind of cool. In that episode we got to shoot in this old military base where they had all the tunnels underground. That was spooky within itself because there was just this energy about that whole area that you know hardcore stuff had happened in there. There was just that gloomy feeling and then we go in there with aliens and creatures and critters and make-up artists and people smoking cigarettes and pyrotechnics and bombs. I remember they had to do an explosion and they were like, “Okay, there’s going to be a little bang,” and then they did it and we actually had to dub out in ADR my swear words because I was like, “Holy f—!” They were like, “Can you go ‘frell’?” And I’m like, “Babe, that so doesn’t look like ‘frell’!” Frell!

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W: I still have a pair of Scorpy’s teeth and the other day I was up in Sydney and I hold the baby up to the photo of Scorpy on the wall and go, “Look at Daddy, look at Daddy!” And I thought, “I’ll put in the teeth and see what he does.” So I put the teeth in and he just goes, “Uh, Daddy clean! Daddy clean!” He doesn’t know what’s going on in relation to the photograph but it was pretty cool.

Q: Were there any scenes or characters within Farscape you would have wanted to work with that you didn’t get a chance to?

Wayne PygramW: I always wanted to do a bit more with the big super-duper Scarran dudes. Dave Elsie (phonetic) presented an idea one day, just an image, like a sculpture of it. It was Scorpy chained to Big Daddy Scarran and the scale of it was me at two inches and Big Daddy (gestured with hands). It never went anywhere obviously, but that was an interesting idea. (inaudible) I never really had much playing with them – a little bit in the Peacekeeper Wars and that was about it. So that was certainly something that could have been explored. Scorpius’ rise from the Scarrans, his connection to the Scarrans. Scarran is just a frightening image. They presented this image and came up with a bunch of ideas but nothing ever happened.

L: It would’ve been great to have different scenes with Crichton where they weren’t always adversaries. I think within the relationship that occurred, it was actually perfect the way that it was. But it would’ve been fun. I mean, it would’ve been fun to join forces with Scorpius and explore all of that. It would have been amazing.

G: Which is exactly why we need a movie!

W: Well whatever happened to the animation thingy?

G: The webisodes?

W: Yeah the webisodes.

G: You guys know the answer to that. They’re stuck! I’m like, “What kind of answer is that?”

W: Stuck on what?

G: Oh financial…once again waiting for that chunk.

W: The Edgley Company! Get the Edgley Company on board!

G: I already know how to get another credit card! I would be back on the streets with my unicycle fire show.

Q: Are we going to be able to have a Mambo picture with the three of you? It’s our tradition, you know.

L: Sure.

G: It’s gonna cost you! Just kidding!

Q: Was there any scene Chiana needed to have with someone?

G: I just think it was such an eclectic series. Everyone had such a depth to them, from the Scarrans to the Nebaris…Everyone had a beautiful backstory and I just think we do seriously need a movie! The Peacekeeper Wars didn’t quite do it for me; I thought they were trying to tell too many stories in too little time.

2009-LA-Farscape-Wayne, Gigi and Lani - 08

Q: Gigi said earlier she learned a lot from being on Farscape, so for each of you, my question is: is there anything you learned from your time on Farscape that you’ve brought on to other acting roles?

G: Farscape was my learning ground. I was a baby. I’d done two other jobs before that, so I had no idea how to find a camera, how to hit a mark, how to be in the light, how to not talk over other people’s lines when it was their close-up. I had no technical training. I was method, hardcore method actor. “Hey, I’m an alien, I’m a creature. I’ve got my horoscope and I’m going to do some crazy crap now.” I didn’t know that you have to bring your head up, that people need to hear you, that you need to chill out on other people’s close-ups. I had no idea, so Farscape was my primary school, my preschool, my middle school, my high school and my masters and my doctorate. It was such a cool place and everyone was so giving and so willing to let you know when you stepped over the line and help you with the proper way to do it. I didn’t realize I was that brave. That Chi character, she’s insane! So when I would get nervous on Rescue or on other shows, I go, “Don’t worry. You’ve pretty much been there and done that with everything and anything, so you’re going to be okay.” Farscape was such a big blessing for me. So yeah, pretty much everything.

W: Most often it reinforced the things I knew. As I was saying, working with the set pieces or in harnesses or whatever. Lots of things I didn’t get to do elsewhere being an actor in Australia. (inaudible) I’ve had to fight against the man at the top, you know, when I was going back for screen-testing finding something to make it more naturalistic but at times I’d be conscious of the fact that I did it for so long and it was so pleasurable. I did find it sort of difficult to get away from (inaudible) without losing the naturalistics of the performance. It’s no big deal at all. It was something I was conscious of for a little while afterwards. To apply myself, I would do things like ignore punctuation and I would do rhythmic things and I’ve found I’m still doing the same things that are attached to Scorpius, but that weren’t necessarily as useful.

L: I think the thing was about precision. I always loved being able to actually take any script that I have and to the comma and to the full stop be absolutely precise and efficient with it. I was in a play recently for a three week run called References to Salvador Dali Make Me Hot and I played the moon, and the moon was Mexican. This is by Jules (sic) Rivera who wrote The Motorcycle Diaries, so it was a wonderful play. There was a young actor in there who, on a number of nights, added dialogue. I would be on stage just watching as the character, and I thought there’s a great discipline to it. That’s one of the things I loved about Farscape, there’s a great discipline to it about being very specific. Nothing was lost. If you actually just treated the dialogue exactly the way it was, everything would be there on screen. I carry that with me to every job that I do – being disciplined about the dialogue. I mean, you can’t improvise Shakespeare. You can’t go “tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow and maybe tomorrow and tomorrow and…” so it keeps on creeping on. You can’t do that! It’s so precise and because of that, it’s wonderful as an actor just doing exactly what’s been written and no more.

W: As for me, as an actor I’ve always tried to honor the writers’ role. They’ve got a job to do and I give respect to their words. Obviously, a lot of the time we re-arrange things, nip and tuck, but pretty much, as Lani says, we’re doing it exactly as it is on the page. I think that’s an actor’s job: to honor the writer. He’s given you words. It’s a funny thing, at home I’ve worked at jobs and I come from a theatre background and the thing I learned about improvisation, don’t do it unless that’s the character and it’s consistent with the production you’re doing. But I’ve heard actors say when they look at the script, “Oh, my character wouldn’t say that.” I would say to them, “Well, your character does on my page, my friend!” A writer is a writer, an actor is an actor.

G: Oh, we’re being kicked off. But we don’t want to go.

L: Before we go, who wants to sing?

2009-LA-Farscape Convention Sings!

W: I was going to do, like I said, iconic Australian folk songs. You guys have Woody Guthrie and Pete Seger who sing about the difficulties of working class people. You know Rolf Harris? Rolf used to do this with (inaudible). How about we all stand and do a celebration of the Aussie? We won’t sing the whole song, we’ll just do a little bit of Tie Me Kangaroo Down. (actors and audience sing)

Didn’t catch my interview with Lani Tupu? Click the link below!

LA Farscape 2009 – An Interview with Lani Tupu

ValaBlackClick to visit ValaBlack (Steph) on Twitter

ValaBlack

4 thoughts on “Farscape 2009 Los Angeles Reunion Convention Coverage

  1. I love my Farscape. Thank you for doing this report. I’ve never been to a convention…EVER. I would love to see a Farscape movie, too.

  2. Hey Steph,

    Just arrived here and satellite connection a bit wonky but anted to leave you a note of thanks for a great read! It brought back very fond memories of when we were there and I watched this panel during a break from the Stargate side of the convention. Great report great read! YAY!

    Best Regards

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