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Feature: Stargate Continuum

Cam-Do Attitude

Ben Browder We caught up with Colonel Cameron Mitchell, aka Ben Browder, on set to hear about his trip to the Arctic and other perks of the job making Stargate Continuum

The cream of the world’s journalists have been gathered on the Stargate sets in Vancouver for wine and cheese, and entertainment is also available in the form of Ben Browder. Readers of this magazine and its sister title Cult Times will be aware of my multiple encounters with the man who plays Colonel Cameron Mitchell in new DVD movie Stargate Continuum, but this is the first time we’ve met in person, and we’re delighted to see each other, which is heartening. On the downside, when Browder is faced with a roomful of members of the foreign press, it does leave me in the occasional vulnerable position, as you’ll see…

Continuum is the second DVD movie with the SG-1 crew and, unlike its predecessor The Ark of Truth, is more of a standalone tale, as the machinations of long-time baddie Ba’al result in changes to the timeline that Mitchell, Dr Daniel Jackson and Colonel Sam Carter must go back in Time to fix. “The thing you’re trying to avoid with these movies is… what’s the British series with the people who have specialties in some field?” Browder asks me, eventually eliciting the answer ‘Mastermind’ after a couple of tries. “You don’t wanna feel like you have to be Mastermind to watch the movie but at the same time, when you’re making a movie like this, you have existing characters and you can’t ignore the mythology of the series.”

Assured by the assembled throng that everyone could follow the movie, fan or not, Browder is asked which DVD movie was more of a challenge for him. “They’re completely different kinds of challenges. Because the fight sequence in Ark was challenging but in a completely physical manner where I felt like I’d been run over by a truck. The odd thing about Continuum is that you look at it and think, ‘That should be challenging,’ but Brad [Wright, writer and executive producer] gave me such great stuff to do.

“I got to go to the Arctic and wander out in this rare place of immense beauty with a group of wonderful people and shoot a TV movie at the same time and go on a nuclear submarine; that doesn’t feel like work so you can’t say that it’s difficult.

“And then when you come to work and they’ve built this freighter and the freighter actually moves and the soundstage is refrigerated so you don’t have to act cold, that doesn’t feel like work either.” And there’s more...

“And then...” Browder adds, “you get prosthetics which are so beautifully made that you just stand in them, adjust your voice a little bit, adjust your walk a little bit, that doesn’t feel like work either. At the end of the day you just look in the mirror and go, ‘Oh, I’m an old guy. I’m an old sea dog. Look at me, I’m a sea dog, put the cap on, y’know?’ And that isn’t work, that’s play.

by Paul Spragg

Read the full interview in
TV Zone #232

Photo © The sci-Fi Channel
Feature © Visual Imagination 2008. Not for reproduction

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TV Zone #232
September 2008
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