Monday, August 2, 2010

Comic-Con 2010 Exclusive Story: The 'Chuck' Press Room

Chuck stars Zachary Levi and Josha Gomez posing for photographs during the press room in the TV interview line

A few days ago, I spoke of the Being Human press room and the intimate feeling I got from it, and that it took place in a location a bit away from the craziness of the convention center.

My second press room - NBC's Chuck press junket - however took place in a room close to Ballroom 20 where all these shows (Chuck, Supernatural, The Big Bang Theory, Vampire Diaries, Fringe etc.) held their panels.

And this is where the experience got a bit different for me, and the press rooms became a true crazy press machine.

So Friday morning, I hurriedly went to the Chuck press room. I was a bit nervous that morning because first I had to find the room in that massive place that is the San Diego convention center (which turned out to be easier to find than I first thought), plus I had no idea what was going to wait for me there.

There were definitely quite a few more journalists for Chuck than there had been at the Being Human press junket.

In a medium sized, rectangular room, you would have your television crews all lined up near a Comic-Con "wall" and there would be about ten round tables in the room. Half of them are used by the TV crews to put their things on (electronics, bags, personal belongings and what not), while the other five are used by the written press.

When the cast walked into the room, half of the actors were ushered to the TV crews (i.e. the main stars) while some of the others were ushered to various tables.

The way it works is that ''handlers'' generally take care of ushering the actors from place to place, press line to tables, and vice-versa. The interviewees usually (emphasis on that word) stay about 5 -10 minutes tops at a table, depending on how many they are, and then move on to the next one.

A very busy affair, I unfortunately didn't get to meet up with all the actors. Yvonne Strahovski, who plays super spy Sarah Walker and Chuck's spy handler and girlfriend, didn't even make it to any of the written press tables.

Chuck star Zachary Levi and Joshua Gomez - who plays Chuck's best friend Morgan Grimes - only popped up at the very end for about two minutes during our interview time with Adam Baldwin (John Casey) and Mark Christopher Lawrence (Big Mike), because they were simply running out of time and wanted to acknowledge our table (very sweet of them still).

I'm just simply bummed out that the only question we had time to ask them was asked by someone who wanted to know about Zachary Levi's t-shirt. I went (in my head of course, though my eyes may have conveyed it as well): Seriously?!?!?!?! Only question we have time for and you ask that?!?!

The t-shirt will be available from the actor's upcoming clothing company. You can make of that what you will.

However, our table got to talk with Scott Krinsky (Jeff) and Vic Sahay (Lester), Ryan McPartlin (Devon Woodcomb a.k.a. ''Captain Awesome'') and Sarah Lancaster (Ellie Bartowski), and as I just mentioned earlier, with Adam Baldwin and Mark Christopher Lawrence.

Ryan McPartlin and Sarah Lancaster were very sweet and absolutely beautiful. These guys look exactly the same in person as on TV. Everyone does! That is the strange thing. You would guess these people would look better on TV because of makeup and lighting but they don't; I mean they look AS good in person as they do on our small screen - even better in some cases (I'm talking about you, Zachary Quinto!)

Adam Baldwin and Mark Lawrence were also very cool and nice people. Very communicative and interesting. It's funny to think that Adam Baldwin is nothing like his counterpart John Casey, or even (thank God), like his Jayne Cobb character on Firefly. Of course, that's what actors do.

Since I absolutely adore Zachary Levi and Joshua Gomez, not having them at our press tables for serious questions was obviously my biggest disappointment of that press room. And the fact that I didn't get to "meet" them. But I'm hoping for another time.

However I was really happy to meet the famous Jeff and Lester, and to get to ask them about that very famous Blaze of Glory video they did. Vic Sahay "thanked" me personally for that question ha ha!! I, of course,  answered that he was welcome. These guys were absolutely funny and great, with Vic Sahay doing most of the talking while Scott Krinsky was pretty much laughing at what Sahay was saying.

Basically all of the actors we met with in the Chuck press room were gracious and nice. And all in all I can say that it certainly was a very interesting experience.

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