Google+ Cinema Viewfinder: Interview: Battlestar Galactica's Ronald D. Moore on Virtuality - Part 2

Friday, June 26, 2009

Interview: Battlestar Galactica's Ronald D. Moore on Virtuality - Part 2

In Part 1 of this interview, Ronald D. Moore described how Virtuality (an unsold pilot airing at 8-10 p.m. ET/PT on FOX) differs from the show that was his claim to fame, Battlestar Galactica. Today he goes further, expanding on some of the details that set Virtuality apart from other well-known science fiction series. In terms of how Virtuality's virtual reality and reality show aspects comes into play, Moore wondered, "What would NASA or the space confederation do at that point to keep them from going crazy? They’d probably have a really advanced virtual reality program to help them while away the hours, and there’s interaction between those two worlds. "Somewhere in those discussions we started talking about when they would be broadcasting pieces back to earth, obviously, like astronauts do today, and hey, what if they made a reality show out of that? Then it all kind of started to come together. You had these three layers of storytelling going on in the show where you had what was happening in the real world on the ship, what was happening in the virtual space, and then what was the reality show that was seen back on earth. Were the needs of the reality show starting to impact what was happening on the spacecraft? Were people being manipulated in order to make better drama for the reality show? The astronauts themselves would start to wonder about, 'Are they telling us the truth about what’s happening back on earth, or is that something to just get us to be upset for the cameras?' It did sort of become this really interesting sort of psychological crucible that they would all be put in." Concerning the similarities to Caprica's virtual reality subplot, Moore says, "They do have different purposes and different sorts of constructs to them. They both involve putting a set of goggles on your face, so they’re similar in sort of that perspective. In Caprica it’s really much more akin to the Internet where you go out and the virtual spaces are practically infinite and they intersect with one another. On Caprica you can go from the V-Club where we establish in the pilot is sort of a hacked world and then, presumably, there are Worlds of Warcraft type of worlds, etc., etc. It’s all sort of interconnected into their version of the Internet. "In Virtuality we’re looking at something much more discrete, much smaller, much more of a gaming type of environment where an astronaut has a specific virtual reality module that they go into and play whatever game or have whatever experience they want, but there is no expectation that you can cross from one module to another." Moore also gave an intriguing taste of what one could expect in Battlestar Galactica: The Plan, a movie that reframes the events of the defunct series through the Cylons' perspective. "I think there are definitely surprises. It’s really a piece for people who love the show. If you love the show you’re probably going to be really intrigued by The Plan, because it’s going to have all of these little bread crumbs and throw away lines and indicators and suggestions from other episodes. You’ve seen the show. You’ve watched the finale. You know how the story ends. Okay, here’s like an additional slant on some things that you didn’t know about." But Moore really hopes his fans tune into FOX tonight to try Virtuality. "It certainly does not resolve itself in two hours. I mean it sets up for a [series], so it’s got some pretty heavy things that go down in it and kind of leaves you going, 'Whoa! Where is that going?' by the end of it." Virtuality airs tonight at 8-10 p.m. ET/PT on FOX.

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