[06/21/07 - 12:31 PM]
Live at the "Heroes World Tour" Press Conference
By Brian Ford Sullivan (TFC)

Please note: As a courtesy, please do not reproduce these comments to newsgroups, forums or other online places. Links only please.

10:11 a.m.: NBC has quietly assembled "the entire world" (as the gate security guard put it) for today's press conference, which apparently will feature the announcement of the "Heroes World Tour." During the drive over I had it in my fanboy head that this would be where they would unveil the eight new cast members - Nick d'Agosto, Dania Ramirez, Barry Shabaka Henley, Holt McCallany, David Anders, Eriko Tamura, Lyndsy Fonseca and Dianna Agron - in some sort of "meet the new team members" press conference like in the old "Avengers" comics. But, no such luck.

10:30 a.m.: The man of the hour, Tim Kring, appears with the first season cast (more on this in a second) and gives us the lowdown on the aforementioned tour. His comments are literally word-for-word from the press release (read the story), so no sense in reproducing them here. In short, members of the cast and crew will visit Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore, Munich, Paris, London and New York City to help promote the show via press events like this one. Not surprisingly the tour will coincide with the release of "Heroes'" first season on DVD and HD-DVD (the latter was stressed heavily throughout the event). Also of note, Kring says the tour will attempt to be "as green as possible" (again, more on this in a second).

10:36 a.m.: The floor opens up to questions. Someone asks if they plan to film in any of the mentioned cities. "We had discussed that but in reality I think it's just... we wanted to focus really on the release of the [DVD and the show itself in various territories]."

10:37 a.m.: Tim confirms there will be no Blu-ray release of the first season. It's HD-DVD only kids.

10:38 a.m.: Someone finally asks about the big elephant in the room, will all of those present - Santiago Cabrera, Jack Coleman, Greg Grunberg, Ali Larter, Masi Oka, Noah Gray-Cabey, Hayden Panettiere, Adrian Pasdar (sporting a beard a lumberjack would be proud of), (a very tan) Zachary Quinto, Sendhil Ramamurthy and Milo Ventimiglia (with newly cropped locks) - be around for the second season? Kring coyly dodges the question, "This is about the first season. The World Tour is representing the first season of the show."

10:39 a.m.: Tim on how far along they are in breaking stories for season two: "It always evolves. That's just the nature of this kind of storytelling and a writers' room that is as dynamic as it is. But we're well into the middle of the season now, we're breaking the middle of the season."

10:40 a.m.: Someone asks if people can be sure to say who they are before answering. This leads to literally every question thereafter being followed by Masi Oka dryly pointing out who said what.

10:41 a.m.: The always-ready-with-a-quip Greg Grunberg on what's different about this tour versus other shows' attempts to do the same: "Well, 'The Brady Bunch' went to the Grand Canyon, so this is pretty cool for us."

10:42 a.m.: Tim on what plans they have in store for Comic-Con this year: "This year we're going back with a big kind of a thank you. We're trying to bring everybody involved with the show - the entire cast and all of us, the writers and producers. And we're going to be doing apparently a much bigger venue, a bigger room with some behind-the-scenes and some clips and some announcements that we're saving just for that."

10:43 a.m.: A follow-up asks if we'll see any footage from season two then. "We'll see what we can put together between now and then," Tim adds. "It could still be wet by then [i.e. too early as production just started two days ago]."

10:44 a.m.: Someone asks Tim how exactly the tour will be "green" if they're flying to all these different countries. "We are talking about that. Obviously the idea is to counterbalance the carbon footprint with some various actives that we can do here as well."

10:45 a.m.: Tim on that status of spin-off "Heroes: Origins": "We are now in the process of talking about who's going to be writing, who's going to be directing them." He adds that it is indeed supposed to be an anthology series. "That's the idea, that it will not be a continuing cast [or] a continuing storyline." Furthermore, he confirms none of the regular cast is expected to appear. This leads Grunberg to fake a tantrum about missing out on the work. "This cast has 24 episodes to do this year," Tim continues. "[And] that's a giant mountain of work already to do. So the idea is that these are the stories of other people. The show has posited this idea that this is happening all around the world. And so this is an opportunity for us to tell some stories about some of these other people out there."

10:46 a.m.: An attendee asks about the new cast members. "I don't know whether that's something I'm supposed to be talking about," Tim says. "There are a couple of new characters that we're going to fold in and a couple of them have been announced already in the press. Dania Ramirez is one." Dennis Hammer follows up that "I think everybody" has been revealed by the press.

10:47 a.m.: Tim on how exactly the blonde-haired/blue-eyed David Anders can be playing Japanese warlord Takezo Kensei: "Like with everything on 'Heroes' nothing is quite what it seems to be. So there is clearly some subterfuge going on there that has to be unearthed and dealt with. And that becomes a huge part of the story - the reveal of who this character is." He adds that Masi's character will be trapped in the past for "a handful of episodes."

10:48 a.m.: Hayden Panettiere on what it's like to be back at work: "Amazing. I can now work more than 10 and a half hours." (She turns 18 this year.) Jack Coleman adds, "Which is not that great for the rest of us." Tim chimes in that the first two days of production have mostly focused on Hayden's character.

10:49 a.m.: Someone asks Jack if his scripts now list him as Noah instead of H.R.G. It's the latter. "We didn't want to confuse Jack with any new information," Tim jokes.

10:50 a.m.: Another person turns the attention back to the fate of the first season cast members, specifically the now-bearded Adrian Pasdar and the now-cropped Milo Ventimiglia. Adrian, after a slip that he plays/played Nathan Petrelli, only notes that "anything can happen" while neither have filmed any scenes thus far.

10:51 a.m.: When more questions are asked about the fate of Adrian and Milo's character, Greg chimes in - "And I took four to the chest. Thanks for remembering. Hey, hello??? Four bullets. Right here. Zach got stabbed and crawled into the sewer!" He later admits he's filmed some scenes but they could be him "laying in a hospital bed or a coffin."

10:52 a.m.: A few questions about the DVD extras (click here for the full list). Tim adds that commentary is on every episode from around number nine onward.

10:53 a.m.: Adrian notes that on a recent trip to Monte Carlo with Masi, everyone that came up to them had seen the show (via illegal downloading) even though it hadn't premiered there yet.

10:54 a.m.: And finally, Tim reconfirms that "Heroes: Origins" will indeed bow in April and run through May sweeps after the parent show's season ends that same month.

10:55 a.m.: And that's all she wrote! Shortly thereafter, a giant cake shaped like a globe (featuring the names of the tour cities) is brought out which Tim cuts with a replica of Takezo Kensei's sword. Yes, that's a "Heroes" press conference for you.

  [june 2007]  


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