Louis Ferreira and Brian Smith Talk about Stargate Universe

Louis Ferreira and Brian Smith

I recently participated in a conference where Louis Ferreira (“Col. Everett Young”) and Brian J. Smith (“1st Lt. Matthew Scott”) took some time to answer some questions from the media about STARGATE UNIVERSE. This was a fun call as we came to find out that Louis Ferreira is a very energetic and jovial guy who kept the whole hour very entertaining. Here are some of the most interesting parts of the Q&As.

How is it interacting with those fans?

Louis Ferreira: Okay. Well for me it’s been twofold. I think that what we have recognized and noticed that we were always going to – some of the fans were going to be a little discouraged because their version of the old Stargate is no longer the same. We were aware that they wanted to try to do something different with the franchise.

Many fans don’t get to have as much as 15 years of a franchise on air. So to try something different was bold considering you’ve got a built-in audience and success.

To watch it unfold and then to watch these Brad and Robert actually execute their plan has been I think really positive for all of us. And one of the things that we have noticed is that we are keeping those fans and for those we are grateful. But we are also hopefully attracting people that might not have come to a Syfy type show in the past and realize that this is just a good drama set in space.

So it’s kind of nice to feel that we are – as much as we are part of a franchise that we are on our own sort of a unique original show. And I think that Brad and Robert, it says a lot for them for trusting. It was always their plan. People will notice in the final ten episodes the growth of the show and it was always their plan to sort of establish things initially before things would come.

Brian Smith: You hear a lot of people saying that that they were kind of disappointed in the lack of character development in especially Atlantis. I think that’s something that we tried to address with the show this year especially in the first ten episodes. While this is a show that’s going to have action and adventure and Sci Fi elements in it, there is going to be time to really set up the chess board to find out who these people are and what’s at stake for them in the situation.

Are you guys going to Comic Con this year?

Brian Smith: Yeah actually I think we are going to be at Comic Con this year. It’s kind of been built into the schedule. I don’t know if we’ve been announced officially but it’s something that the show loves to do. We all love to go out there. I’m 90% sure we’re all going to be there.

Louis Ferreira: Yeah I think it’s going to be exciting. I didn’t go last year but I’m super excited about going this year not only as part of a show but also as a fan of so many of the other ones that are going to be there. So I’m looking forward to taking my kids out there and having a good time.

(For Louis Ferreira) Rush and Young appear to be mortal enemies. Do you think that in the rest of the season we’re going to see a resolution to the conflict or is it going to be even heightened?

Louis Ferreira: You have two men that ultimately have very two different agendas yet they need each other to survive. And like one of those unhealthy perhaps relationships that people stay in way too long, this is even more trapped because you’re caught on the ship literally. So you don’t have that out. So I think that it will forever be a journey of extremes and at times, you know, balances but I think that particular conflict is absolutely necessary to the heart of the show.

Can you talk about the stones and how it has impacted you as actors and also your characters?

Brian Smith: it’s a really great device. I think it’s an important device because otherwise, you know, I think the whole flashback thing is so tired. I mean, we do flashbacks a little bit in the show but it’s done in a smart way, in a different way I think.

And what I like about the stones is that it serves as a sort of stand-in for the flashback. You get to actually go back and in real time as the story is moving forward meet these people’s pasts. You know, you get to see Scott and you get to see the implication of his past and what’s happening with his son and the girl that he got pregnant. And the same thing with Young and his wife, the same thing with Chloe and her mom. It’s a really smart way of getting to go deeper into the characters.

And for us as actors it’s nice sometimes to get off of a ship. You know, it’s nice to be in a living room, it’s nice to be wearing regular clothes, it’s nice to, you know, be talking about something that’s got to do with a personal human problem and not just, you know, how do I survive this crisis situation that I’m in. It helps keep me invested.

Louis Ferreira: for me the stones have various significances from the idea, the core idea, I believe the idea that it’s you psychologically, you know, inside the person. So there’s something interesting that happens. You play the mask because this is how we’re taught to survive in our society, the pain is hidden. And so it allows for the audience to see sort of how the characters are really feeling.

For us using the stones, it’s a bit of a mind trip. As you’re sort of trying to adjust with the reality of what’s going on as much as it is for the audience going okay, that’s not them but it’s them. For someone actually going okay, I’m in somebody else’s life psychologically and I’m trying to comprehend it myself and the more times you use it the sort of more you get used to it so that becomes an interesting journey on itself.

The flip side of that I think is that the stones some have said perhaps are a little bit too convenient and takes away from the tours away from the idea that these people are really trapped and that it allows them an escape. So I think for example if there were several episodes where the stones weren’t accessible then I think that you would also get the idea and understand just how stranded and alone and, you know, how – basically how alone these people are in their situation.

How will the second half of the season be different from the first half?

Brian Smith: I would say that we’re still sticking with our show and we’re still sticking with these characters and we’re still interested in the relationships. The difference is now that we have established who these people are we can now throw them, you know, in the pool and see how they swim or not.

Louis Ferreira: Imagine an SGU meter, it’s going to be cranked up another 20% in these following 10 episodes and that’s I think the way it’s going to happen over the course of the year. So that’s – in other words the growth comes out.

We started these people with that beautiful metamorphic symbolic birth through that Stargate. They need air, they need water, basic elements, a little bit background from every character.

Now you’re getting into sort of the acceptance of things and you’re actually getting into areas of Sci Fi that people are more familiar with but amidst that still a very character driven show.

The producers and writers online have reached out to fans to ask what they would like to see in the second season Do you know if any of that input is being implemented and how?

Louis Ferreira: The answer is yes and how is for them to watch and find out perhaps rather than saying, you know, we’ve been told not to sort of really give away any plots. We can say things like the aliens are coming.

Brian Smith: As far as to how they’re integrated them, the fans will have to just wait and see. But it’s actually really exciting to see where they’re going. I’m completely shocked with where they went in the second half of Season 1.

Who is the one character from this new half of the first season that you can’t wait for fans to see more about

You’re going to see a lot of P.J. in the second half and there’s going to be some developments with her that are pretty shocking and some things that oh God, I’ve got to stop myself because I get too – start talking about the end of the season but I don’t want to.

Alaina (Huffman) is actually a fantastic actress and she brings so much to the role. And it’s a very interesting role to begin with and I was really happy when we got some scripts about midway through the second half of Season 1 where we really got to see a lot more of her and to see her tested and I mean really, really tested. I think that those are really strong episodes and people are going to really enjoy that glimpse into who she is.

(For Brian Smith) can you talk about the ongoing relationship between Chloe and Scott for the remainder of season 1 and also in Season 2?

Brian Smith: Well I think the remainder of the season it’s going to go to a different level, it’s going to be tested, it’s going to be pulled in a lot of ways. So much of the relationship seems like a mystery so I’m really happy to see that we’re going to be exploring that much more in the second season.

But yeah it’s, you know, Matt is going to be going through changes, Chloe is going to be going through changes, and Eli as well is going to be going through changes and he’s definitely there in that mix. So, you know, it will be interesting to see how people react by the end of the year.

For Season 1, are all the main characters of the show going to survive up until the end?

We can’t give that away, come on. I love that question, it’s a good one. We can tell we all try to be on very good behavior, we know that much.

Louis Ferreira: I personally love it, I think it’s a great relationship to explore. It makes a lot of sense to me. It’s not a relationship based on sex but it’s one based on mutual respect and kind of understanding for where these – for where they’ve been. So I like it, I’m glad we’re still exploring it.

Brian Smith: There will be changes, we can say that. There will be changes.

Louis Ferreira: Don’t give it away. Thank you.