Farscape fans rejoice! Claudia Black just gave us some more info on the show’s upcoming webisodes when we spoke to her on the red carpet for the Spike TV Video Game Awards. Black was nominated for Best Voice for her role as Chloe Frazer in Uncharted 2: Among Thieves. She may have lost out to Megan Fox, but the game took the title Game of the Year. (She’s also the voice of Morrigan in Dragon Age: Origins which was voted Best RPG…and is sitting on my desk, tempting me to blow off work.)
So you are up for an award tonight!
Claudia Black: I am! I’m a little busy tonight. I’m also the voice of the show, so I’ll be sitting in a little booth doing the live announcing.
So between Farscape, Stargate and your multitude of video game voices, you have a ton of sci-fi fans. What are your feelings about how geek culture is taking over the world right now?
Black: I just love that science fiction as a genre and the gaming industry both have become much more legitimized. For me, I could make a joke and make light of it by saying that I have what people consider to be a fancy voice and there’s an expectation that I do fancy, highbrow things. I’m a real sort of adrenaline junkie. I’ve always aspired to playing roles…as soon as I saw Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2 and the first Terminator and Sigourney Weaver, I mean, they were my idols in a way. I thought, oh, I so see myself doing that. I identify with those women and those roles. I really wanted to do that. And I’m just so lucky that I grew into those opportunities and they’ve shown themselves to me as an actor early on. And I’ve always been able to play these very interesting, strong, yet very flawed female characters. And they seem…it’s really interesting, because in the old days of science fiction, women were really objectified, and you’re in a bikini and you don’t advance the plot in any way. Doing shows like Farscape and Uncharted 2, you’re sort of right up there, front and center, moving the story along, very much part of the heartbeat of the story. And I’m really proud of the fact that the gaming industry and sci-fi as a genre have been the forerunners of that. That’s the front line.
You still have a ton of Farscape fans. I happen to be one of them. Is there any talk of continuing the story? Doing any other projects?
Black: Well for Farscape there still is talk. We did a panel at Comic Con…
I couldn’t get in! I was stuck…
Black: Oh no! You should have called me! [laughs]
[laughs] It wasn’t that. I was stuck in Ballroom 20 and couldn’t get out!
Black: Oh, I see, OK. I was going to say, next time, if no one lets you in, you make sure you let me know.
[laughs] Claaaaudia, they won’t let me iiiiin…
Black: [laughs] They’re trying their best to get some webisodes happening, but their difficulty is A, no one has been able to prove that webisodes are sort of a reliable business model. It’s very hard to get that to work. The whole new media thing. It’s such a conundrum right now. But, they believe…their MO is to try and get…I know they’re intending to, I think, five to ten minute webisodes with high production values, but with a slightly smaller world, because they can’t, on that sort of budget, reproduce what we did for the TV series. But we want to have that same, high quality feel to it. Because otherwise it wouldn’t be the same.
Have they looked at The Guild? That’s all webisodes and it’s a really successful one.
Black: Yeah, I mean, I’m developing shows myself right now, and I see it as a very…I think it’s important to sort of create an asset and let the public speak. That’s what I love about the advent of the internet and what it’s done for music industry and the television industry. It’s leveled the playing field and people could…cottage industry. Create their own content, put it out there, establish themselves with an asset, and let the audience vote for what they want to see and what we should throw money at.
What would you like to see for Aeryn Sun in the webisodes?
Black: I like to surprise people. I like to surprise audiences, so whatever they’re expecting, I’d like to sort of flip it on it’s head and deliver a different Aeryn then they’ve seen before. That’s what I loved about Farscape, is that wonderful device that they use in the story of having two Crichtons (Ben Browder).
That was a great storyline.
Black: Yeah, it created this incredible reset button, which is really hard to do in series television. So I think they did a great job with that. Ben and I are such incurable romantics that we were determined, despite all the noise, visual, you know, the extravagant sort of sets and design and everything, that at the heart of it, it was just a little love story. That would be important for Aeryn. That she’s still part of that love story.