When I found out Eric Stoltz would be involved in the Battlestar Galactica prequel, Caprica, I was over-the-moon excited. I love me some Stoltz. Whether in some deformed kiddie movie, or playing a whiny junkie in Pulp Fiction he is my random character of choice. Stoltz shared with us some secrets about Caprica, and his upcoming project Blank Slate.
We tried to ask Stoltz whether it was true Caprica had already been picked up as a series, and he wouldn't say for sure. Shortly afterwards, a Sci Fi Channel publicist got in touch to tell us that no decision had been made yet. But here's what Stoltz was able to tell us:
How did you get involved in Caprica?
I was sent the script out of the blue, and loved it. To be honest, I wasn't looking to do a pilot — I've spent the last four or five years concentrating on directing, phasing out acting. But this script drew me in — I found it smart and compelling and different.
Were you a fan of Battlestar Galactica? Did you watch the series before to prepare for Caprica?
I'd seen some of it, and thought it quite good. But watching a series that's meant to take place after our story didn't make much sense to me, especially when we had the creators available to us to answer any questions, and point us in the right direction.
So your character, Daniel Graystone, what's he like what can you tell us about him?
He's a lot like Bill Gates... only richer.
Caprica has a great cast, what was it like working with Esai Morales, or as I will forever call him Adama's Dad?
Esai was lovely to work with, although I didn't have that many scenes with him. He's a talented man. He brings a rough and tumble quality to the piece that's just right — like an old time movie star.
I know you guys run into a bit of a conflict when you recreate your past loved ones mechanically, how does your character's reaction differ from Esai's?
I'm not sure I should talk about this, as it involves spoilers.
How is your character responsible for the family war that is happening on Caprica?
I don't know — yet.
What other characters that we're going to meet in Caprica should we be excited for?
Paula Malcomson as Amanda Graystone, a strong brilliant surgeon. Alessandra Toreson as our daughter, Zoe. Polly Walker as Sister Clarice, the woman who heads up the Athena Academy, and DeForest Kelley as "Bones" McCoy.
Are there any surprise future relatives that are linked to your character from the BSG series?
If there are, they haven't told me about them yet. I think it's kind of fun to be in the dark about these things. At least, that's what I'm telling myself.
Do we get to see any future glimpse of the first Cylons? What do they look like, are very heavy on the mechanical side?
I don't know either- it's all created in post production effects. We acted our scenes with lights tied to poles — kind of like trained seals. "Look over here! At the bright shiny light!".
What were you most shocked about in the script?
How smart it was.
How many episodes are you planning on filming, I heard two more
scripts are in the works for future episodes?
I haven't the faintest idea, I know the cast would like to film as many as possible, certainly if the scripts are as good as the pilot and if Jeffrey Reiner, our director, comes back to guide us.
I heard that Caprica has been picked up as a series is that true?
I haven't heard that. I think the fine folks at Sci-fi are waiting to see the pilot before they commit to anything, which makes perfect sense to me.
Have you had a chance to talk to any of the crew about future episodes of Caprica?
I did speak with our director of photography, Joel Ransom. He also shot the pilot for Battlestar, and a show I did a few years ago called Out of Order. He's unbelievably talented. I asked (okay,
begged) him to do the show should we get picked up. He said he'd be interested — maybe... Then he laughed loudly. He may have winked as well. I can never tell if that guy is kidding or not, but I sure like working with him.
How would you describe Caprica to our readers (since they are very anxious to see it)?
It's a show that takes place in the not-so-distant future, on a not-so-distant planet, that deals with a family struggling to stay together, class warfare, religion, and our never ending search for meaning in a world that over-values stimulation, consumerism, and facts.
What can we look forward to in Blank Slate?
Blank Slate is a well-told nasty little story about corruption and a woman's search for her true identity.
Does your character condone the implanting of memories into other people?
I don't think he believes in it much. He's the skeptic, the realist.
I read that Blank Slate will air in 20, 4-minute segments, is this true? How did you prepare for that?
I think it's coming out in many formats- the traditional 85 minute movie, the 4 minute segments, as well as 2 minute 'mash-ups'. There is no way to prepare for however a film is cut or presented, other than to try and make the scenes work- and trust that Dean Devlin and John Harrison and their fine editor will be able to construct it in an interesting way. I think they have- I'm very pleased with it, proud to have been a part of it.