Another Paley evening means another tired and slightly bemused morning—but it was worth it. As I mentioned earlier, last evening I attended the last in the drama screening series at the Paley Center. It was a night with the cast and the creators of the CBS drama, “Moonlight”. The panel included Harry Werksman (Executive Producer), Brian White, Gabrielle G. Stanton (Co-Executive Producer), Jason Dohring, Eric Winter, Sophia Myles, Alex O'Loughlin and Joel Silver (yep, that Joel Silver).
To say the Moonlight fans were enthusiastic would be a huge understatement. They are very invested in the success of this show, and had a really interesting give and take with the panel. Kristin (from E!) was the moderator, and even she remarked that she had never seen a crowd so excited before one of the Paley events (LOL! She should have attended the X-Files event, which was probably close).
Disclaimer here: I watch Moonlight, but wasn’t there from the beginning. My friends PT and M were already big fans, and their interest made me go online to watch the first four episodes that I had missed. So, relative to the crowd on hand, I’m a novice. As one fan humorously told the panel (specifically, Alex, I think), “[we] know more about the episodes than [you] do.” This is a good environment for me to observe rather than participate because I knew any question I might have had for the panel would have been stupid, and clearly something discussed already on a message board somewhere. I kept my head down, and tried not to embarrass PT.
PT had two goals: Meet Alex O’Loughlin and not get arrested. Good solid goals for the evening, particularly since I had limited funds to extract her if she got arrested. I assume she would have needed no extraction from Alex, if that had worked out. Alas, she did not get to meet him one on one. Normally, the clips are shown before the panel, and then the fans get a chance to meet with the cast/creators after the event. For this one, they showed a full episode (fans who weren’t there—you’re going to be pretty pleased with Friday’s ep) at the end, and the panel left. PT did go down as the screening was starting in hopes of a glimpse, but sadly, not meant to be. I heard somewhere that some of them were heading back to set, so that must have been a long, long evening for them.
Some of my favorite moments from the evening:
1) Sophia Myles on why she couldn’t give blood at the blood drive that was being held in conjunction with the event (long story—fan driven event): Apologies, I’m not able to give Blood because I’m from England. Apparently, we might still have mad cow disease [much laughter], so I did try, but they said no.
2) The accents! Intellectually, I knew that Alex O’Loughlin was Australian and that Sophia was English, but it did throw me a bit when they began speaking. Joel Silver joked as each of them started “he’s Australian, he’s not doing an accent” and “English, she’s English, another accent”.
3) The crowd reaction to Eric Winter talking about joining the cast was very entertaining. Look, this guy is hot. As an observer, I can see why having a very attractive man add some sexual tension to the story could be a good thing. But I know any time a woman showed up on The X-Files, I got a little tense, too (Diana Fowley, anyone?). Kristin kept mentioning that she missed Eric on Brothers & Sisters. He pretended to use the big scales: “Kevin or Beth, Kevin or Beth” – which actually got him booed (but not in a mean way) because fans are always going to be protective. Kristin explained, “If you are moving in on Beth, I think they want you back on Brothers & Sisters”.
4) The interplay between Alex and Sophia was very entertaining. While discussing their on-screen chemistry (which they both think is hot on camera):
Sophia: “I think because our relationship is so strong and platonic—I often think when people get involved outside of work, chemistry onscreen goes—but because we’re like brother and sister…”
Alex: “Which is why I just say, No, Sophia” [laughter] “They are friends, they can know”
5) Listening to Joel Silver talk about the process with his other producers was enlightening. I’m sure there is a certain level of frustration with not really knowing what the show’s fate is, but they seem to be planning for an engaging and intense second season should they (when they) get that pick up.
It was a really entertaining evening, and if you have been a casual fan (or if you are a new fan because of Eric Winter), now is the time to check out the show.
As a side note, for those of you keeping score at home, I’ve spent time in the company of 4 of my 5 men of distraction in the last two months. Duchovny in February. Nick Lea in March. George Clooney in March. Alex O’Loughlin in April. Sure, there were hundreds of other people there, but I think it still counts. I even had the opportunity to add #5 (Jon Hamm), but I was so exhausted from The X-Files Paley event, I didn’t go to the Mad Men one the next day. Still—not a bad spring, distraction-wise. I have to hope my late spring/early summer is equally enticing!