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(C) 2006 The CW
Tom Welling and Erica Durance in SMALLVILLE - SEASON 6
Exclusive TV Interview:
Exclusive TV Interview: ALFRED GOUGH TALKS SMALLVILLE, IRON MAN AND THE MUMMY 3 - PART 3
Throw in some talk about JUNGLE CRUISE and this guy is one busy writer
SMALLVILLE may be as popular in its sixth year than it’s ever been, and part of that credit goes to creators Alfred Gough and Miles Millar.
At the Winter TCA’s, Gough sat down with iF Magazine for an exclusive one-on-one and in the final installment of our three-part interview, the creator discusses other projects on the horizon, what happened with their version of IRON MAN and whether or not SMALLVILLE will ever catch up to the regular Superman mythology.
iF: Are you developing any other shows?
GOUGH: Not at the moment. We’re focusing on movies. We have THE MUMMY 3 at Universal and JUNGLE CRUISE at Disney.
iF: Is JUNGLE CRUISE based on the ride?
GOUGH: It’san action-adventure movie, that we just started writing for Disney, which is a lot of fun. It’s in the vein of RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK. It’s taking the ride and making it like PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN.
iF: So it won’t be anything like THE COUNTRY BEARS movie? [laughs]
GOUGH: It won’t be COUNTRY BEARS. God willing, no COUNTRY BEARS.
iF: What about the MUMMY? How will you approach that?
GOUGH: I can’t say a lot, we just met with Rob Cohen today, he’s going to direct the movie. I will say, it’s not set in Egypt and there is a different mummy. It’s not Im-Ho-Tep. The plan is to bring Brendan Fraser and Rachel Weisz back.
iF: Are you bringing the kid back?
GOUGH: Yes, he’s back. He’s a young adult now.
iF: You’re always brought in to tackle this tough franchises -- what do you think you bring to the table that the studios love about you?
GOUGH: Certainly with THE MUMMY 3, they came to us three times we said “no.” They had an idea for third MUMMY movie that we always wanted to do as a movie. We said, “if we don’t do it, they’ll do it and it will be gone” and we came up with a good family story. With a sequel, it’s always about “what is it’s reason to be?” With this one, there is still a story tell about the family, about Alex the son, Rachel and Brendan. Once we had that and this cool new idea, we felt “yeah, we can do it.” But we said, “let us develop the story with you [creator] Steve [Sommers], then we’ll go pitch it to the studio. We didn’t want to sign up, come up with something and then have to sit there for six months and have them shoot it down.
iF: What happened with your version of IRON MAN when it was at New Line.
GOUGH: We worked on that movie for a year. Mandarin was the villain, we had Pepper Potts, we had Tony Stark. I’m really curious to see the movie when it comes to. We worked on it for years and ultimately New Line dragged their feet. As movies tend to go, you get a head of steam behind them, but if some of the other elements don’t click in, it goes away. That was really disheartening. When we’re doing the show, we only work on one movie a year, except for this year. But we really love the guys at Marvel. It was very cool. We worked with Michael Crichton’s researchers to find a grounded realistic way to deal with the suit. The idea was he needed the suit to stay alive. He’s the same guy we used with SPIDER-MAN 2 to come up with Dock Ock’s inhibitor chips and what the arms are made of and how they work. The thing about Michael Crichton is, it’s real, real, real and then fantasy. So he tries to keep the bridge between reality and fantasy, you only get one buy. I think with IRON MAN, we had a really good way to do the suit and a very modern way to tell the story. Madarin was an Indonesian terrorist who masqueraded as a rich playboy who Tony knew. I think we had a really good contemporary take on the material.
iF: Let’s say the CW decided to cancel you after next year, would you be able to essay into that last episode pretty quickly?
GOUGH: We feel really good about next season and I think we have eight seasons worth of stories to tell, but in the middle of next season, November, when we’re in episode 10 or 11. We have to know. Is there going to be eight, or are we done? Because if we’re done, we have to know, we have to start the launch sequence to end it.
iF: Hopefully the great ratings this year will keep you on for those eight seasons.
GOUGH: The ratings have been strong. Creatively for us, it’s been really strong. We don’t feel like we’re running out of gas and worse, treading water.
iF: You brought Lois Lane into this, but it goes against what we know about Lois Lane in the existing mythology. Are you saying this is “your” versions of SUPERMAN or eventually, will all this morph into what we know to be from SUPERMAN: THE MOVIE?
GOUGH: I think it will eventually morph into what you know, it’s whether or not you buy the explanations for how they morph in. Some people will and some people won’t. The comics over the years have certainly taken liberties with the characters and we certainly have with this story. The plan is that it will all synch up with the mythology we all know.
iF: So Lois might not know who Clark is at some point?
GOUGH: He leaves and when she meets him again, he’s this dopey guy with glasses, and oh, there might be something else. There’s a lot of ways to bring it back in line, but I think it’s been great having Erica [Durance] on the show, and see her evolution as a reporter. You look at Erica and go “that character can become Margot Kidder.”
iF: Are you committed to SMALLVILLE’s end run?