Stargate Atlantis actor David Hewlett recently conducted an interview with cinemaspy, during the interview he discusses the challanges he has faced during his 5 years on the hit Sci Fi show, and much more.
Here is an excerpt of the interview:
David Hewlett is the de facto veteran of the Stargate Atlantis team. He’s not only got more credits than his ensemble castmates, but his character of Rodney McKay appeared regularly on Stargate SG-1.
On Atlantis the character of McKay has expanded beyond being a comic foil or trickster-obstacle. He has become less annoying and more sympathetic, less pathetic and more flawed, an understandable transition if audiences were expected to sympathize with him as a main character. The fact that Hewlett, also a veteran of the Canadian film and television scene, gets to play McKay as a Canadian brainiac is something he derives a winking pleasure from.
At Vancouver’s Bridge Studios in May, Hewlett sat down with a group of journalists to talk about the pleasures and pitfalls of being a costar on Stargate Atlantis and what it’s like to work with his sister, Kate Hewlett, who plays Rodney McKay’s sister, Jeanie Miller.
CinemaSpy: What does it mean to play McKay as a Canadian?
David Hewlett: It’s fun, for a change, to do some damage to people’s opinions of Canadians. Every time you see Canadians on television they’re always the sweetest, nicest, not terribly bright people. They are often mounties who, by accident, rescue people. It’s nice to play the genius astrophysicist who’s actually a complete asshole as well. I think I’m doing some permanent damage to the image of Canadians, and I think it’s always fun to mix it up a bit. Especially now that I’m actually living in the States.
Question: Even though a lot of genre shows are shot here and the actors may all be Canadians, very seldom do they actually play them as Canadians.
David Hewlett: It is pretty rare. I think the Canadian film and television scene, a large part is about pretending not to be Canada. I remember them coming in to Toronto and trying to mess it up so it looked more like New York and they’d go away and come back and someone had cleaned up overnight. It is all about pretending to be somewhere else. Changing the road signs, and I had my Canadian accent sort of knocked out of me from the beginning because, god forbid you say “aboutâ€ the wrong way. ‘Cause the Americans are on you. I can’t even say it wrong, now. But it’s kind of funny, especially in a sci-fi show, to actually get to be Canadian. But what’s nice about Atlantis, though, is that it’s an international team, so you get a little. . . . And that is so Canadian. Canada is, what do they say, American is the melting pot, Canada is the cultural mosaic. That’s very much what Atlantis has become.
You can read the full interview here