Okay, I'm a geek. We know this. I liked Comic Con. A lot. I squeed when Findlay finally got the Sci-Fi Channel (that was before it became the cheesy horror channel).
So I am just about salivating over the upcoming J.J. Abrams-helmed "Star Trek" reimagining. And now we have photos to whet my appetite even more:
First we have on the bridge of the USS Enterprise (left to right): Anton Yelchin as Chekov, Chris Pine with a nice shiner as James T. Kirk, Simon Pegg as Lt. Montgomery Scott, Karl Urban as Dr. McCoy, John Cho as Sulu and Zoe Saldana as Uhura.
Then Captain Kirk crawling out of what appears to be an ice hole in which his shuttle has crashed:
Producer Damon Lindelof confirmed that the pic is real and said: "It seems to be some sort of icy embankment. I will confirm that it is an ice hole, or an ice crater. ... We're going to remain deviously guarded about the plot of the movie, but I can say that the scene was shot in Los Angeles and it is a very good looking set.
"Basically once he gets out of that crater, he's in an icy place and there are many effects that follow," he continued. "But for that particular image, it is what it is."
The only other thing he would say is that the scene takes place at the heart of the story, both chronologically and conceptually. "This is right around the midpoint of the movie," he said. "One of the things that's at the heart of the Trek universe ... is the idea of the away team. The idea that it's not just about people shooting around in a starship, but they also go down to these planets."
And, of course, the new Vulcan death grip:
I'm going to die during the wait. Paramount Pictures (ever-so-short-sightedly) pushed the release back from Christmas to May 8, 2009. That's seven loooooong months until I can see me some Captain Kirk. Maybe I'll take a page from Cartman's book and try to cryofreeze myself until then...
Jason Dohring is looking for a role with bite. The Toledo-born actor most recently sank his fangs into "Moonlight" last season as a 400-year-old vampire, Josef Kostan.
"I liked (‘Moonlight’) and I think we started to get into it ... We started to come into our own (in the last four episodes) and I started to get what they wanted from my character. ... I was able to do certain episodes with (that in mind) and I felt great about those," Dohring told the Weekend in an exclusive interview during Polaris Convention 22 in Toronto, Canada.
He was greeted at the convention by a coterie of adoring fans in matching "Think Kostan" T-shirts. The group took turns for pictures, asking him to "bite them" (literally) and kept the line busy during the star’s question and answer sessions.
"I think our fans are a bit different maybe because ... the shows that we do are kind of story-oriented, character and emotion driven and people who wind up watching those shows are a bit different... (Fans) come and they get interested in the story, in the character, the emotions of the story and I think it’s cool to come talk about that."
"I’m a big Star Wars fan. ... I loved those ... I remember getting out of the theater and trying to hold the walls up with my will power, very exciting," he joked.
Dohring’s breakthrough role was as bad boy Logan Echolls on the critically-acclaimed but ratings-anemic CW show "Veronica Mars" in 2004.
"We kind of all sort of grew up together because we were all actors that weren’t really working, this was all our first big break," Dohring said. "Everyone was determined about the work and to make it good, so it was just an awesome environment."
He also starred in several television movies, "Black Cadillac", "Ready To Run" and "Someone She Knows." His other television credits include recurring roles in "The Division," "Boston Public" and "Once and Again," as well as numerous guest appearances.
Dohring appeared in the feature films "Wedding Daze," "Deep Impact" and "Broken Record."
"‘Deep Impact’ was like two lines but it was the funniest lines in the movie — remember that, long hair, pimples?" Dohring recalled. "And it was awesome. I went to prom with this one (pointing to his wife and high school sweetheart, Lauren), and I was the coolest guy in school because I was in this huge blockbuster film. Even if it was only two lines."
An avid sports fan, most of Dohring’s athletic adventures have been confined to the golf course lately, including a recent celebrity pro-am tournament in North Carolina. His choice of sport means his pretty face will stay that way, keeping his acting doors open.
"I play golf, so what’s the worst that can happen, I get hit by a ball? Or I get hit by lightning, right? I think Lee Trevino survived like three strikes so I got a couple of times in me," he joked.
"Moonlight" fans aren’t quite ready to let go of his most recent series. A vocal fan campaign is still underway to resurrect the vampire drama, with plans for a Burbank, Calif. billboard, taxi and subway ads in New York City and the perfunctory letter-writing campaign.
Dohring isn’t opposed to returning to a movie or miniseries.
"I think we would do that, but right now we’re auditioning and trying to get other work, so ... let’s do it soon," he said.
The show’s abrupt cancellation in May sent the actor in a new direction and he is ready to move away from the supporting character roles that have characterized his last four years in acting.
"More recently since I’ve been done with ‘Moonlight,’ I’ve sorted some stuff out in my career, just personally about where I want to go. … I think I’m going to wind up doing some leading type stuff and then I might go back to some character type stuff," he explained. "I think that I worked out a couple things for myself, kind of what I want to create in the world with being a celebrity. ... It was like all of a sudden I realized I could do it and I was like excited to try to do that, be a leading man. And I saw the amount of good that you can do, that you can use that platform to effect change in the world and that was exciting to me."
Dohring also expressed an interest in the social issues facing the Northwest Ohio area where he was born, particularly the issues of education.
On a larger scale, he is interested in human rights. His mother recently traveled to Cambodia and was so overwhelmed by the poverty and repression she witnessed abroad that she had to cut her trip off early.
He hopes to use his career to make a difference in the world, but said acting was his true passion.
"Basically (I love) just creating something from nothing, the ideas that you put into things. ... It’s almost like writing in a way because you’re writing your own (character) ... additional things or additional ideas that you’ve seen from your own life that you want to put in this character or these emotions," Dohring explained.
Despite its abrupt ending — Dohring learned of the cancellation through a voice mail from series lead Alex O’Loughlin — he counts the experience as a good one and is looking forward to at least reuniting with O’Loughlin for DVD commentaries.
"I enjoyed it," he said. As for the future, Dohring is looking forward to his new direction.
"I don’t want to work just to work particularly anymore," said Dohring. "I’d rather find something I’m happy with and create something cool for people to see and I’d rather look for something like that."
For one weekend in one city, a lucky group of science fiction and fantasy fans got their chance to reach for the stars — and actually touch them. Well, the touching was discouraged, but plenty of TV stars were handing out handshakes and hugs, as well as inside scoop on their projects, their personalities and their roles in the genre.
Polaris Convention, an annual science fiction and fantasy convention in Toronto, Canada, formerly known as Toronto Trek, invaded the Ontario capital last weekend with hundreds of fans, a handful of genre celebrities and plenty of enthusiasm.
It began in 1986 as a celebration of all things Star Trek, but has expanded its umbrella to include other shows in the genre and has featured media guests from scifi and fantasy movies and television series such as "Stargate," "Doctor Who," "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," "Lost" and "Moonlight." It is one of several activities run by the TCON Promotional Society
This year the convention brought hundreds of fans, most from Canada and the United States, but a few from as far away as Italy, to celebrate their love of scifi. Guests this year included Jason Dohring (Josef, "Moonlight"), Gareth Lloyd-David (Ianto, "Torchwood"), Rachel Luttrell (Teyla Emmagan, "Stargate Atlantis") and Terry Farrell (Jadzia Dax, "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine"), as well as a number of authors.
Things kicked off Friday night with a Blast-Off Party, an event for diehard fans to meet their favorite celebrities in a casual atmosphere.
Dress for the affair was business casual and some in attendance chose to wear costumes. Celebrities set to attend were Dohring, David-Lloyd from Torchwood, Ellen Muth ("Dead Like Me") and Cliff Simon ("Stargate SG-1").
Fans were packed in with few places to sit. At least half of the fans were left standing for the two and a half hour event while appetizers and drinks kept anxious fans with something in their hands. Though drinks were pricey — in typical hotel fashion — fans did not hesitate to partake in the alcohol flowing freely.
Entries of the celebrities were staggered and David-Lloyd made the first appearance. Each had a celebrity handler who took care of them throughout the weekend and fetched drinks when asked.
Pictures were allowed as long as they were not posed.
Conversations veered off of fan questions regularly. David-Lloyd spoke to guests about his trip to Niagara Falls before his arrival in Toronto while Dohring was more focused on social issues facing the Northwest Ohio area where he was born.
Despite the attempt of some fans to horde all the time the celebrities had to offer for the event, convention personnel rescued the celebrities and kept them moving toward the other guests.
Simon was nearly unrecognizable as a clean shaven version of Ba’al, his character on Stargate, but he was not there as an actor, rather as a model for the character of Kyle Raines for The Black Tower comic book series by Kelly J. Compeau.
Muth arrived late and left quickly after making a quick run through the party. She made herself available for her fans throughout the convention, however, during question and answer sessions and conducted an acting workshop as well.
Once Dohring and David-Lloyd left, the room emptied quickly, but a few fans stuck around to continue speaking to the remaining celebrities who were able to devote more one-on-one time to those who had paid to attend.
In addition to the scheduled events, one of the most notable parts of the convention — any convention — were the elaborate costumes donned by many attendees. Klingons karaoked, aliens gave directions, vampires chatted in the hallways and Indiana Jones toted the Ark of the Covenant through the Doubletree Hotel, often happily posing for photos and striking poses with fans in street clothing.
Media relations coordinator Kate Dyck equated science fiction fans with sports fans — a group of people who are passionate about something and some of whom happen to like dressing up and painting their faces.
"Sports is just more socially acceptable," she said. "But here you get someone who may not come out of their basement all year, but here they are social. They find acceptance and something they love."
That love included more than a dozen writing panels, discussions of the music "Supernatural," a "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" musical sing along, costume how to sessions, showings of various popular episodes and filking (folk music, usually with a scifi or fantasy theme).
Even the stars found common ground with fans and connected through the genre.
"It’s an excuse to come and hang out," said Dohring, a fan of science fiction movies like "Bladerunner" and "Star Wars" and who filled his weekend with a variety of photo and autograph sessions as well as question and answer periods. "These guys come and you get to meet like-minded people and that’s one of the better qualities about these is you get to sit around and talk with friends and people who are interested in similar things."
Dohring fielded a number of questions from a contingent of adoring fans hoping to revive the recently-cancelled "Moonlight." The group informed him of a billboard in Burbank, Calif., ads on taxi cabs and subways in New York City as well as a letter-writing campaign coordinated through www.moonlight-united.com in hopes of getting a movie or miniseries continuation of the franchise.
"I think we would do that," Dohring said. "But they haven’t told us anything so right now we’re auditioning and trying to get other work, so ... let’s do it soon."
A number of fans asked David-Lloyd, whose character is in a same-sex relationship on his show, what it was like to kiss his co-star, John Barrowman.
"It was a work up to it, actually," said David-Lloyd. "For the first kiss, I was unconscious. That was probably the most nerve racking. It’s a scene where he kisses me and I was revived after being thrown across the Hub ... I close my eyes and it was a kiss, not a snog. ... At the end of the season, series two episode three and by that stage I was snogging. That was only one take."
"I was terrified, but within a day, you relax because he is such a big character, touching everyone up all the time," said David-Llyod. "In situations where you don’t expect, (Barrowman) will do a prat take or try to throw you, making faces or getting his bollocks out in the way when you’re in a very tight close up and you expect him to make everyone laugh, it makes you a little bit terrified when you have to do scenes where you have to kiss him... (but) those are the scenes where he’s pretty well behaved," said David-Lloyd. "I was nervous (during the first kissing scene). I was very very nervous, but he was very professional. ... I kept waiting for him to do something like grab my ass but he didn’t."
"Torchwood" has taken on the topic of same sex relationships but David-Lloyd feels that it is a non-issue for the series.
"I think the attitude of both the shows is that the mindset is that (sexuality) is no longer an issue," David-Lloyd said. "That’s what the whole thing was trying to project. There should be no controversy."
The departure of two major cast members in the last season, Burn Gorman (Owen Harper) and Naoko Mori (Toshiko Sato) wasn’t revealed to the rest of the cast until near the end.
"It was their decision, by Burn and Naoko to tell us ...We all were shocked, it came out of nowhere. It was just as surprising to us as it was to the fans. The emotions at the end were very real," recalled David-Lloyd.
For more information on Polaris Convention, click here.
Check back later this week for yet more Polaris goodies...