Interview Stargate SG-1

from TV Zone Special #42
sidebar Colonel O'Neill; SG-1's commanding officer

RICHARD DEAN ANDERSON

LUCKY STAR

Life is good for Stargate SG-1's leading man

Also interviewed in this issue: Michael Shanks, Don S Davis, Amanda Tapping, Christopher Judge, Teryl Rothery...

It was in 1976 that a young actor named Richard Dean Anderson made his début as Dr Jeff Webber on the ABC daytime Soap Opera General Hospital. His good looks, charisma and, most of all, talent soon made him a favourite with the show's fans. The actor went on to achieve worldwide fame as MacGyver, a former Special Forces agent who used his brains and not a gun to beat the bad guys. These days, Anderson, who looks as handsome as ever, is still fighting the bad guys but on an intergalactic scale. He currently stars as Colonel Jack O'Neill on the hit sci-fi cable/syndicated tv series Stargate SG-1 and could not be happier.

O'Neill taking aim"This [job] is kind of a piece of cake for me because I like this guy so much," smiles Anderson. "There are similarities between us in personality and attitude that I'm actually allowed to bring out in O'Neill. If I did that in real life I'd probably be slapped in the face and accused of having an attitude problem.

"So O'Neill is a blast to play, he really is. There is a sense of humour and an underlying degree of sarcasm as well as relative cynicism involved in my performance, and that, to me, is fun. He can also be irreverent at times, which I enjoy, too. I get to laugh at some of the things I do in character because they're genuinely amusing to me. Ultimately, I guess the sound-bite is that if this ever stops being fun then it's time to pack it in, and so far it's still fun.

"As for the development of my character, it continues on an even track. I mean, he hasn't had a sex change yet, but then we haven't used the Stargate to visit Denmark. Who knows, maybe that'll be in Season Six", he laughs. "No, I'm kidding! Seriously, I'm very comfortable with where O'Neill is at the moment. I don't think there has been any great wave of revelation in terms of his story arc. Instead, we've seen a sort of gentle embellishment of what's already been revealed about O'Neill over the past four seasons.

"Year Six, if there is one, would be the time to really start taking some chances and futzing around with story arcs and character swings. After that, we'd be looking at either a transition from tv into feature films or the end of the SG-1 saga. It depends on what MGM [the show's production company] decides to do. So for now it's status quo for Jack..."

According to Anderson, there is one particular aspect of O'Neill's life that he would like the show's writers to explore further if the opportunity arises. "There was an episode in our third season [A Hundred Days] in which we gave every indication that O'Neill had fathered a child," says the actor. "Earlier this year, I asked Brad Wright [series co-creator and executive producer] if he'd ever consider doing a story in which O'Neill goes back to that planet and discovers he's got a child. If we did, I'd like it to be a daughter, only because he's already had a son. I'd love to see a relationship like that unfold in front of the cameras."...

Steven Eramo

sidebar Human subject: O'Neill
Human designation: Colonel (Military)
Human familiar name: Jack

The Asgard first became aware of Jack O'Neill when his SG-1 team deactivated our protective device on [P3x974/Cimmeria]. The ability of O'Neill to absorb even a small amount of the archive of the [Ancients] caused us to reassess Humans. We now believe that O'Neill may be a [unknown].

O'Neill has had a troubled past, with the death of his male child after misusing one of O'Neill's military weapons. This caused deep psychological problems which were only begun to be dealt with when O'Neill was involved in the first mission to [Abydos]. Since then, the Stargate Command personnel have become his new family unit and he has mentally relaxed more. He has a mate/wife, but after the death of their child they now live separate lives.

We have noted that O'Neill has a very casual attitude towards his superiors and dangerous situations. Fortunately, those around him are prepared to accept this behaviour, so far. We are slightly concerned that the militaristic side of O'Neill can sometimes become too dominant - a worrying trait of the species - and we must keep a watch on that.

Asgard seal When Thor's spaceship, the Biliskner, was infested with Replicators, he turned to O'Neill for help, and the Human was ready to sacrifice his life to save the planet Earth from the creatures. It is [interesting] that the simple and primitive weapons of the humans proved more effective than our own in dealing with the Replicators. Once again, the humans have surprised us with their ability to solve problems.

Get TV Zone Special #42 for the full interview,
plus others with many of the cast and crew of Stargate SG-1

Stargate SG-1 images ©MGM / Showtime
Feature © Visual Imagination Ltd 2001. Not for reproduction

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