As we enter part 3 of our grand set visit we get to meet the rest of the cast. Peter Shinkoda was a pleasant surprise showing up on the first day, then Connor Jessup surprises us by being our “tour guide” on day 2 for our visit to the skitter unit. I will never stop thanking Turner Broadcasting (TNT) and MAP Marketing & Incentives for creating the most incredible experience I’ve ever had.
This was our second stop on the grand set tour and where the principal actors were filming scenes inside a large building reminiscent of a hockey rink or skating rink. The really cool thing was they weren’t filming indoor scenes even though they were indoors. They had it set up to look as though they were traveling outdoors.
Since filming was going on, we were ushered into a large room in one corner of the auditorium and were met shortly thereafter by Colin Cunningham (Pope), Peter Shinkoda (Dai), Drew Roy (Hal), and Sarah Carter (Maggie). They seemed to be as happy to see us as we were to see them and spent a very long time posing for pictures and answering questions in interviews. They were the ultimate in gracious guests as well as being quite entertaining. It was easy to tell these guys got along off set which is always something fans hope for and in this case it’s true.
We managed to snag Colin for a solo picture and he was patient as we had a bit of camera trouble, but he’s got a great sense of humor and a wonderful outlook. The dude’s great with people and he puts you at ease even though I was standing next to an actor whose work I’ve admired since his days as Major Davis on Stargate: SG1.
Next we were escorted into the main arena area where all the shooting was going on, and by “shooting” I mean filming, not guns. We had a chance to sit in the bleachers behind the production crew and watch the inner workings of Falling Skies as they were creating it. From our vantage point we could watch the playback of filmed scenes on monitors the production crew were using. These people are meticulous and will shoot a scene many times over to insure they’ve got it right. This is quality and care in action.
There was a break in filming and we had a chance to meet with some of the other actors who were all also very happy, friendly people. It’s like they all came from the same “land of kind and decent human beings.” I want to move there and live out my life with people like this because their happiness and kindness were just plain infectious.
Moon Bloodgood (Dr. Glass) had a long conversation with us like we were old friends. She’s a pretty big star in the entertainment industry so I guess I wasn’t expecting her to just walk in and chat with us like it was an ordinary day! By this point I’m pretty numb and having a Level 5 Geekout, but I tried to keep my composure.
The lovely Seychelle Gabriel (Lourdes) was equally as charming and at least twice as cute in person as she is on the screen. She was simply the sweetest young lady you could imagine. You might be able to tell in the picture that we’re standing on steps. Ms. Gabriel was kind enough to bear with us while we tried a stair arrangement that would put us as close together in height as possible so we could get a good picture.
We hardly had time for our eyes to recover from the flash of the camera when in walks Mpho Koaho (Anthony) in full bullet-belt garb! This guy is so happy it should either be illegal or his happiness should be bottled for sale. I’d be his best customer. He didn’t just greet us with a handshake, he gave us full-on hugs! How great is that? This is a man who appreciates his fans and he was at least as friendly as everyone else and quite the character!
Because they were the ones having to do the most at the time we arrived, Noah Wyle (Tom) and Maxim Knight (Matt) met us several minutes later. The two of them were shooting a scene together and business comes before pleasure so we were happy to wait and get to know our new friends who also happen to be stars of our favorite television show.
Once they had a break, we had a chance to go down to the floor of the arena and get some pictures with Noah. He was very charming to everyone and even though he’s a big star his graciousness would give no indication that he was anyone other than a really nice guy. He posed for a couple of pictures with us, even suggesting the young lady stand in the middle, or as he put it, “The rose between the thorns.”
Unfortunately in all the excitement we didn’t manage to get individual pictures with the lovely Sarah Carter (Maggie) or Maxim Knight (Matt). Before we left we got one more surprise. They sat us visitors in the bleachers and had the entire cast present sit amongst us for a big group picture! I was lucky enough to sit next to Maxim Knight and we had about 10 minutes to just chat. Let me tell you, this kid is smart, funny and a great conversationalist. He’s got a bright future ahead of him.
After all this excitement we boarded our luxury bus for the ride back to the hotel and the atmosphere was electric. Here we had a busload of very serious fans of Falling Skies who had all just lived one of their dreams by meeting and getting to know the stars from the show! We were walking with our feet several inches off the ground.
You’d think that would be the end of the day’s activities, but Robert Prentice, owner and editor of Three if by Space, the absolute nexus of Falling Skies information got a phone call. The voice on the other end was none other than Peter Shinkoda himself! What was he calling about, we wondered? Everyone was waiting impatiently to find out just what Peter was speaking to Rob about. The suspense was killing us.
Believe it or not, Peter said some of the actors were finished filming for the day and wanted to know if we’d like to go hang out and play pool. Yeah, this just kept getting better and more surreal. So we made our way to a local pool hall where we got the chance to shoot some pool with Peter, Drew, Connor, Colin and even Greg Beeman came by! We spent a few hours just having the best time with a great bunch of people who know how to make fans feel appreciated. I only hope we managed to convey how much we appreciate their hard work on Falling Skies in return.
So, in conclusion, I leave you with a group picture that’s a mix of the actors and bloggers, sans myself as I was holding the camera. This was such a rare and wonderful treat I’ll be talking about it for years to come.
Keep checking back because in about a week I’ll have some video interviews with the cast. You don’t want to miss what they had to say about the show and each other! You’ll love getting an idea of just how great these guys are when they’re out of character and you’ll definitely get a feel for the friendliness I keep referring to.
If you missed part 1 of our set visit, be sure to read Falling Skies Set Visit – Vancouver Season 2 Filming.
If you missed part 2 of our set visit, then please read Falling Skies Set Visit Part 2 – Meet The People Behind The Skitters.
Click here to visit the Official Falling Skies website.
For the web’s premiere site for news, clips, images and insider information of Falling Skies be sure to visit Three if by Space.
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