For a most excellent recap of Nick Brendon’s Q&A, I refer you to molly_may’s post here. She utilized her time in line waiting to see the ‘Firefly’ folks well. :)
I do have a few thing to add…..
Some people seemed eager to get dirt on Sarah Michelle Geller. While Nick did not list her as one of the people he’s remained in contact with since the show ended, I also noticed there was no mention of James.
Here’s a not great picture of the tattoo (and the expensive hat he wore all weekend):
While talking about OMWF, he recited the “cause witches they were persecuted Wicca good and love the earth and women power and I'll be over here" line and nailed it. A feat he tried to repeat during the Buffy/Angel panel and stumbled…three times. I give him credit for trying to repeat his prior success though.
I believe someone asked him if he could still do any of the dance moves from OMWF and he said he couldn’t, but that he’d do the Snoopy dance when he got up to leave. Sure enough, he did and here is a really bad photo of his endeavor.
Xander was supposed to die in Season 7. I think I heard about this somewhere before, but he went on to say that Joss changed his mind because he didn't want to piss off all the fans. Joss didn’t want to piss off fans. This amuses me. ;)
Nick made a joking comment about finding out about the show’s cancellation from a magazine. I still have a hard time buying this since Joss, Sarah, and others had talked between seasons about 7 being the last.
He wasn’t surprised that Xander left Anya at the alter, but was surprised that they ever got engaged. When asked about Anya’s death, he kind of got off track and discussed what he thought Xander would be doing now - drinking and doing drugs, but he'd pull himself together if there were to be a movie.
The Buffy/Angel panel was….interesting. We had found out in the morning Summer Glau had cancelled (calculating how much she was making signing autographs, I don’t blame her). Which left Nick, Clare Kramer, James Leary, Ken Feinberg (the Chaos Demon from FFL), and presumed last minute replacement Anthony Cistaro (Who left us going who? what? But he clarified that he had played the Ethros Demon and Scourge Commander on ‘Angel’ leaving the audience to let out a collective “Ohhhhh”), and Andy Hallet. Except Andy didn’t walk out on stage and after everyone sat down many in the audience asked “Where’s Andy?”. To which I believe Nick replied, “That’s the question of the weekend.” Apparently Andy is still an active alcoholic and Nick, who has sought recovery, probably was taking issue with Andy’s behavior. Though I could sense tension from *everyone* on the stage. They claimed he’d be out soon and soon turned out to be 45 minutes into the Q&A. He ended up answering one question and, imo, appeared to be inebriated.
As for the others, I left with a positive view of all of them, especially Clare. There seems to be a hierarchy on panels with the stars of the show, understandably, getting the majority of the questions and then supporting players, guest stars, and so forth getting fewer. But Clare held her own with Nick and really knew how to work the crowd. When talking about current projects she asked if anyone watched ‘House’ because she was appearing in the premiere this past Tuesday. Nick mentioned his ABC Family film, ‘Relative Chaos’, which premiered last Monday. This lead Clare to act disappointed because she thought she had one upped him.
Somewhat surprisingly, the actors had the opportunity to talk about non-Buffy/Angel projects. Clare discussed her first role in ‘Bring it On’ and how much fun it was. James Leary discussed working on turning ‘Stunt Cocks’ into an animated series. Ken Fienberg talked about teaching acting, directing regional theatre (he now lives in Atlanta) and a film project he’s pitching which Billy Crystal just turned down a role in. Anthony Cistaro was at the Con because of his work on ‘Witchblade’ and fielded a question on the series resets (no clue, I didn’t watch) and had some pretty thoughtful answers to other questions.
I caught two ‘Stargate’ panels with danceswithwords. Did I mention what a bad influence she is on me? The SG actors present included Torri Higginson (replacing Chris Judge), Rachel Luttrell, Don Davis, Bill Dow, Cliff Simon (Baal), Brandy Ledford (there for ‘Andromeda’, but she did a couple guest stints on the Gates), Erick Avari (Sha're's father in the film and kind of an ass, imho) Kevan Smith (Major Lorne – I have no clue who he is, but he’s cute!), and Claire Rankin (supposedly a psychiatrist on SGA, again, no clue).
The panel on Monday, Star Trek vs Stargate, was sort of a bust. The SGA actors had to leave half way through to make their flight and there was some obnoxious guy on the panel defending Star Trek. With the exception of Denise Crosby, all the ST people were folks involved in fan related projects and didn’t seem to have a lot to say about ‘Stargate’. Btw, Denise *really* wants to be on ‘Stargate’ and kept saying she had to call up Richard about that. Seems she and RDA use to work out at the same gym. Of course, Richard is no longer starring on the show, so I’m not sure how much help he’ll be. ;p
My personal highlight of that panel was Don Davis and Torri Higginson being served Corona’s at 12:05. Before you ask why I noted the time, I was wondering if Georgia had some sort of law that alcohol could not be served until after noon.
The Saturday panel was more entertaining, but I don’t recall anything specific being said about the shows. Torri and Rachel appear to get along very well. Both also seemed very sweet and, seeing them up close in the Walk of Fame, tiny! When asked about fan encounters, Rachel said she doesn’t get recognized in public. Completely believable when you see her sans makeup with her hair pulled back. She is naturally very attractive, but the show sees fit to put quite a bit of makeup on her thus making her look different. She said the one time she was noticed she was running, in the rain, with a hood pulled over her head and when the gentleman passing her asked if she was Teyla, she was quite shocked.
They played a brief video Dean Devlin had sent in which he revealed that he’s been approached by MGM (?) to complete what he perceived as a ‘Stargate’ trilogy. I’m more than a little confused as to how this will work with ten years and two series worth of canon now. Don Davis also confirmed that MGM plans to go ahead with a ‘Stargate’ interactive video game as well as possible TV movies. ‘Stargate’ is MGM’s second biggest money maker – second only to the Bond franchise.
There are so many embarrassing moments at Con, but asking actors about what they think of fan fic is up there. I had to watch danceswithwords cover her face and look for a chair to crawl under twice during the course of the weekend. Cliff Simon tired to approach the subject in a diplomatic and humorous manner. If it’s something the fans enjoy, then let them have at it, but he admitted he took a look at a Jack/Daniel/ Baal fic and wondered who was on top of who.
Oh, and Don Davis mentioned how Janet’s death was the result of cost cutting and that the news devastated everyone, particularly him because he views the actress as a daughter (she even calls his wife ma or mom, I can’t recall which). And that the emotions you see are screen were real.
I have a confession to make. I enjoyed this years ‘Firefly’/’Serenity’ panels more than I did last years. That’s not a slam at last year’s attendees. It’s just very hard to compete with the comic genius of Alan Tudyk and Summer Glau in the role of straight sidekick. Actually, Summer reminded me quite a bit of River minus the insanity and scary abilities. She’s sweet, quiet, and straightforward. And instead of shaking her head and smiling as most guests would when they can’t understand a question, her confusion is written all over her face.
Again, I’m going to be all over the place with what was said when because the three panels I saw all blurred together by the end of the weekend. I do believe the first panel on Friday had one of the highlights of the Con for me. I only remember this because we were to be at the Nick Brendon Q&A, but thanks to a tiny, packed room we opted to go upstairs to Alan and Summer’s talk.
As Summer was finishing up with a question, Alan’s phone went off. He pulled it out, took a look at it, smiled, and announced to the crowd (all quotes are paraphrasing), “Look, it’s Captain Tightpants.” After an enthusiastic response from the audience, Alan suddenly cringed, laughed, and said, “I just hung up on Nathan Fillion.” Oops. He was disappointed because his intention was to put him on speaker so we could hear him. Immediately there were shouts of “Call him back!” Which he did! See picture:
Now, when Nathan answered I don’t know what the hell accent he was attempting. It sounded like a mix of Spanish, French, and Italian. After repeating himself several times Alan finally said he couldn’t understand a word he was saying. At which point Nathan decided to speak more clearly and told Alan he was wondering if he was done with his panel. :p Alan informed him “No”, there was some banter between the two, and then Alan proceeded to get Summer in trouble. See, right before the call there had been a question as to the mood on the set and if they were sad after they read the script and learned of Wash and Book’s deaths. She said that she wasn’t. Alan acted terribly hurt and may have made a comment about a knife in his back. So Alan asked Nathan, “Do you know what Summer just said about Wash and Book’s deaths?” After telling him Nathan asked Summer if she was there. In this very quiet, cautious voice she said “Yes.” To which Nathan replied, “This must be so embarrassing for you right now.” :)
During Sunday’s Q&A Alan was talking about the Wake for Wash that was held in the Consuit the previous evening. He had dropped by to read Wash’s eulogy. He thought one had just been written, but was impressed to discover that this was the winner of a contest and he had been shown the stack of submissions. The woman who wrote the winning eulogy got up to ask him if he’d be so kind to sign her copy stating that he had read it at the wake. For some reason she had missed seeing him read it and wanted proof for friends and family. He said sure and as she approached, people started yelling out that he should read it again. The woman was thrilled by this suggestion and since everyone was interested in hearing it, he agreed to do it. There is no way I can quote what was written, but let me say that I thought it was perfectly in keeping with the character and show. The most entertaining part of all this is that Alan decided to make corrections/edits as he was reading. And, with pen in hand, he was clearly doing that. The only specific I can remember is that in addition to the attributes the writer had attributed to Wash he would add “sexy, sexy, sexy.”
Here's Alan doing rewrites:
Other random things I can recall…
Alan was one of two finalists for the role of Wash. The other actor being considered was the guy they cast as Dobson in the pilot of ‘Firefly’. Ok, not really seeing him as Wash at all. And Alan was actually suppose to read for the role again the next day, but on his way home from the studio he got a call telling him that they just decided to hire him. I think he made a joke about hoping the other guy got home alright if he was informed he didn’t get the role in the same manner.
When asked what the weirdest thing was they were asked to do while filming, Summer said it was joss asking her to pick up the stick without bending your knees
Alan was asked who was the better kisser – Gina Torres or Heath Ledger. Which lead danceswithwords to ask me when he kissed Heath Ledger (‘A Knight’s Tale’ for those that don’t know). Oh, and he said Gina.
After all this time it suddenly struck him as tacky that Zoe wore white to his funeral, but someone in the audience pointed out that it’s a Chinese (?) custom. He felt better after that.
Though not thrilled with Wash’s death, Alan said he understood why Joss did it – to raise the stakes for them all.
Alan and Ron were told by Joss that if there is another film, they will both be in it. There was much applause to that revelation. I can only assume they’ll be brought back in flashbacks or Joss is thinking of doing a prequel. Alan had an idea that Joss should do a prequel series for each character.
When asked about their acting method, Summer, who trained as a dancer from the age of 4 or 5 until an injury ended her career, said she had only taken one class related to acting. It was a class that helped people overcome their fears of speaking in front of people (at which point she gestured to the audience) and then mentioned it also was a jazzercise class. Alan suddenly froze, turned to Summer, and said “Jazzercise?” He then proceeded to have a conversation with her about this revelation as to her technique and joked about it through the rest of the Q&A.
The mustache Alan wore in ‘Out of Gas’ he had to fight for. He had all these ideas for how to make Wash appear different in the flashbacks and it was the only time he ever called the writers room to offer any suggestions. The mustache was last on his list of ideas, all the others (one was Wash having a huge birthmark on his face) were immediately shot down. When he mentioned the mustache they said they’d consider it. The make up people created several before deciding on the one we saw as being the best. However, David Greenwalt took one look at it, deemed it fake looking, and told them to lose it right before filming. Alan informed the make up guy to grab the glue and put it on him; he was not going to surrender in this fight. Apparently, after the scene was filmed and it received a thumbs up and laughs from the crew, Greenwalt relented and let him keep it. Turns out it was reused while filming ‘Serenity’. Remember the scene where we see the video mug shot of Mal? They did one for each character and they opted to use Wash in the mustache, smiling for the camera. Alan said he was surprised it wasn’t included in the deleted scenes.
Both received questions regarding other projects they have worked on. Summer talked about ‘The 4400’ and enthusiastically stated she hoped to be back because she’s not dead! And she’ll have a reoccurring role as someone’s girlfriend on ‘The Unit’…..and she’s not dead! Alan pointed out this is a big thing with her.
Alan fielded questions about ‘I, Robot’, ‘Dodgeball’, and ‘Spamalot’ which was one of the best experiences of his life. Turns out the role of Lancelot as written required more singing, but Hank Azaria, who originated the role, couldn’t sing so his numbers were cut. He also discussed his work on a recent table reading of ‘Xanadu’ and laughed about that one – it’s not good.
Alan was recently making a film in London with several well known British actors. He was the lone American and one night the cast went to see a play. Afterwards, they were approached by a group of people all of whom wanted to see him and ask about ‘Firefly’ which left the others a bit put out.
Summer recounted one fan experience. Her copier at home broke and she called to get help to fix it. The guy on the phone asked where she lived (“LA”) and what her name was (“Summer”) which led him to ask, surprisingly, if she was River on ‘Firefly’. She said yes, but could he please help her fix her copier. He did.
The dreaded fanfic question was asked. Alan had been pointed in the direction of an Alan Tudyk fan site and he took a look at a fic involving Wash and Simon. He went on to describe reading about Simon’s rippling muscles and oiled skin and then suddenly Wash was reaching for his…and he quit reading.
I mentioned previously the long autograph lines for Alan and Summer. Alan had photos from several different films he had appeared in. He had the idea to sign a film appropriate quote on each photo. By the end of autograph session on Friday he had signed so many autographs and was so tired that he started putting the wrong quote on the wrong photo. Seriously, I was shocked by how long the lines for them were especially with the show and film being over. No other guests had lines. I’d love to know how much money they made.
molly_may and I ended up waiting two hours for Alan’s autograph. danceswithwords joined us after a ‘Stargate’ panel ended. By the time we saw him it was the end of the day and while still friendly and smiling, I could tell he was getting tired. I shook his hand and told him it was nice to meet him, though we had actually met before. He said something like “Really” and asked where and I explained to him I had seen him in ‘Spamalot’ and he was kind enough after the matinee performance to sign autographs. At the time, I had mentioned something to him about how much I was looking forward to ‘Serenity’. And though I had wanted to see Hank Azaria I was thrilled to learn he was subbing for him. He reiterated that it was one of the best experiences of his life, I thanked him, and moved on.