The first thing you need to know about CAPRICA is that by design, it is absolutely nothing like BATTLESTAR GALACTICA. “Our challenge with CAPRICA is to try and break the mold of BATTLESTAR,” explained co-creator Ronald D. Moore at Monday’s Paley Festival event honoring both BSG and CAPRICA. “As much as we love BATTLESTAR, we now have to destroy it. The CAPRICA narrative will be nothing like BATTLESTAR’s narrative, the style is going to be different and the characters are going to be different. We’re taking a risk and saying to the audience, ‘We know you loved BATTLESTAR, we know you invested in it and we salute you for it. Okay now, here’s something literally, completely different.’….”
Seriously, really different
Which means don’t hold your breath for the epic space-battles that became standard with some of the most memorable episodes of BSG. “There are no Cylons coming to destroy Galactica and the fate of humanity doesn’t hang in the balance each and every week.” re-iterated Moore. “I’m fascinated by stories about people and you either love these character and you want to follow them every week and see what they do next [or you don't!]”
It’s FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS (in the future!)
And who better to get audiences invested in the denizens of Caprica than Jeffrey Reimer, the critically acclaimed director of FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS who Moore and co-producer David Eick went out of their way to single out (alongside co-write Remi Aubuchon) in their opening remarks at Monday’s Paley event for setting the tone of the series. Added actress Paula Malcomson who plays CAPRICA’s Amanda Graystone, “He [Reimer] had enough cameras sort of positioned so that all the self-consciousness of performance went away. As opposed to doing a master and a close-up, we had all that and it was like creating a play and really working and really doing a scene instead of, you know, we’ve done 13 of those and how was that one and was my close-up good. So it took all the math out of acting. It was really real.”
When in Rome
Further setting CAPRICA apart from its predecessor is that it requires absolute zero knowledge of prior BSG mythology. If you’re one of the many who think a toaster, is well, an actual toaster… don’t worry! Explained Moore, “I never say never, but the intention of CAPRICA is really to make it its own show, a series that stands on its own, that is part of this larger universe but is not predicated on knowledge of, or love of, the original. That was very important to us.” Added Eick, “The connections to BATTLESTAR should be subtle, ‘easter egg’ like, fun but not imperative, to understanding the show.” In other-words, joked showrunner Jane Espenson, fans should not be holding their breath for a surprise appearance by Col. Tigh’s father!
And finally, there’s no rush
Sure, NBC Universal would certainly like you to run out and buy/download CAPRICA right away, but the fact of the matter is that there’s really no rush. Especially since
Sci Fi SyFy does not plan on premiering the actual series until early 2010. Which means moments after you jump fof your couch and shout, “Holy Frak! What happens next?” following an epically cool final act… it will quickly dawn on you that ‘next’ won’t happen for a minimum of nine months.
For a complete recap of the BATTLESTAR GALACTICA/CAPRICA Paley Festival Event, click here.