Date of publishing: 22nd
Ben Browder is best known to sci-fi fans for his starring
role as John Chrichton on Farscape, as Commander John
Crichton, a 20th-century American astronaut who was
accidentally shot through a wormhole to the other
side of the universe. He also is familiar to television
audiences for his role as "Sam," Neve Campbell's
boyfriend in the FOX series Party of Five. In addition,
he has appeared in several TV movies. His serial TV
credits include guest-starring roles in Melrose Place,
Grace Under Fire, Murder She Wrote and Boys of Twilight
with Wilford Brimley. Born in Memphis and raised in
Charlotte, N.C., where his family owns and operates
a NASCAR Busch series racecar, Browder is a graduate
of Furman University in Greenville, S.C. He received
his acting training at Central School of Speech and
Drama in London. Ben Browder plays Lt. Col. Cameron
Mitchell in Stargate SG-1 since season 9.
Craddock: Had you
been please with your character’s development
prior to cancellation?
Ben Browder: I liked how Mitchell
eventually settled in to his role as leader of SG1,
it wasn’t an instant “Here’s the
capable I can do anything kind of leader guy thing”.
That to me was a good progression. Sure there was
much more to explore with the guy, but I like where
we leave of heading into the movies.
Linda Craddock: How
different was it to play opposite Claudia Black in
Farscape and Stargate?
Ben Browder: Claudia played such
different characters on shows, that our on camera
interaction is very different. Off camera we have
such an “easy” working relationship that
when we work together its like breathing… its
natural and it feels good.
Linda Craddock: With
2 seasons as member of SG1, what story or mission
would you like to see further exploited on the big
Ben Browder: I leave the missions
to the writers… but I’d love to see the
whole of SG1 engaged in trench warfare… deep
in the mud.
Linda Craddock: Your
talent has brought you 2 Saturn Awards, nominated
for 4 within the Sci-fi genre, what direction would
you like to take at this point of your career? Continue
acting/writing, perhaps directing or producing?
Ben Browder: I just like to keep
working for a while… shake the trees and see
what falls out… you never really know what adventure
is around the bend. Any of the above could be fun.
Linda Craddock: What
would be your ideal role for a television series or
Ben Browder: Don’t have an
ideal role in mind. The fun is in taking what you
get and finding a way to make it work for the story
and the project. What I look for is something which
engages me intellectually, physically, emotionally
or otherwise challenges me. Looking for the ideal
role… Something like the Elephant Man, but funny,
and without the prosthetics which are a real pain
in the backside.
Craddock: Is it
safe to say there was a little more flexibility as
a member of Farscape, from inception to be more creative
versus fitting into a cast and the writing of a series
that has been on for 8 seasons?
Ben Browder: It's safe to “say”
that. The shows seem to be built on very different
working models. But not being around at the inception
of SG1, I can’t fully and accurately comment.
Linda Craddock: You
wrote story for “Bad guys”. What was your
motivation for this episode?
Ben Browder: I came up with a story
idea. Martin Gero and the writing staff fleshed it
out and wrote it. My motivation?... I think I was
just thinking out loud, as I am apt to do on occaision,
who knew they’d actually use the fool idea.
Linda Craddock: It
is not often 2 main cast members from one TV show
get cast into main roles together in another sci-fi
show. How did you feel about that?
Ben Browder: I feel good about it.
Claudia is immensely talented and a good friend…
its win, win.
Linda Craddock: What
unique element do you think Mitchell brought to the
Ben Browder: Mitchell brings fresh
perspective. He has no”been there, done that”
in him. The problem with “experience”
is that it often narrows our perspective and choices.
People who head off in the “wrong” direction
often achieve the most interesting results.
Linda Craddock: I
understand you travel often between work and family
to spend quality time with your children. How difficult
was this on your daily performance?
Ben Browder: I spent a great deal
of time on the road while shooting SG1. 16 hours of
travel for 36 hours at home was not unusual. I spend
as much time as I can with my family… quantity
is quality as far as I can tell. But “difficult”
for me, would be to not have a family to come home
to. Being tired (from travel, work, parenting, or
spousedom) is all part to the job… if that’s
the worst thing that happens to me, I’ll be
Craddock: What do
you do in your spare time? Do you enjoy any hobbies
during your time off?
Ben Browder: Right now… and
my interests do change over time… I’m
into coaching youth football. Next year I hope to
coach the polevaulters at the high school. I suppose
it falls into the I like working with young people
category. Teaching kids, helping them meet and exceed
expectations, watching them grow in the process is
infinitely fascinating. And as a parent, I believe
that we have a duty to whole of the next generation,
not just our own progeny. Sport is a no lose endeavor,
Kids can try without real repercussion. If you fail
at school, you’ve got a real problem…
at work, it’s a problem… fail to file
taxes, big problem. But in sport you can exceed your
reach, fail, pick yourself up and try again. This
kind of learning I like.
Linda Craddock: What
do you feel was your proudest moment as an actor with
Ben Browder: Hmmm… tough one.
Can’t encapsulate a moment. I’m very pleased
that fairly quickly in the process I felt part of
the cast, not an outsider. But that may be more credit
to them than me, hence nullifying the concept of pride
Linda Craddock: In
completing this sentence “My career thus far
has exemplifies ... ”
Ben Browder: … that Forrest
Gump’s Mama was right about life and boxes of
Linda Craddock: Since
the cancellation of SG1 has there been any speculation
about the direction of SG1 in the not to distant future?
Ben Browder: No news here…
we just completed the first 2 SG1 movies.
Craddock: How would
you like SG-1 to be saved? There are several ideas
about saving the show on the web, from mini-series,
TV movies, theatre movie, 11th season to go direct
to DVD, 11th season only for iTunes or AmazonUnbox
downloads … What would be your choice?
Ben Browder: I like the series of
Linda Craddock: The
Stargate fan base is so huge that they may finally
influence a decision to continue an 11 th season.
How would you like to thank them? Can you say something
to all of us?
Ben Browder: Without an audience,
what we do (actors) is meaningless. A story, well
told and well received is our work. On stage, in some
places, it is customary for the actors to applaud
the audience at the end of the bows. I wholeheartedly
support this tradition. We are partners in the endeavor…
Linda Craddock: What
would you like the fans to know about Ben Browder?
Ben Browder: I was often late in
doing my homework… but I’m still working
on the problem.
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