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Allen, Tim: Reminiscences on Galaxy Quest PDF Print E-mail
Written by By Mitch Persons   
May 09, 2004 at 02:00 AM
Tim Allen is one of those people you just can’t help liking. The star of TV’s HOME IMPROVEMENT, the films THE SANTA CLAUSE, JUNGLE 2 JUNGLE, FOR RICHER OR POORER, and DreamWorks Pictures’ sci-fi comedy GALAXY QUEST, is always smiling, always ready with one of his mildly self-parodying quips.
\\\"I’ve always loved sci-fi,” grins Allen, “and when I heard that there was an s/f comedy script floating called GALAXY QUEST, and there was a part that I would be ideal for, I was dying to see it. Unfortunately, the producers felt I wasn’t the right type to play a buxom blonde, so the part went to Sigourney Weaver.\\\"
\\\"Seriously -- as we say when we’re in trouble -- I got to play the part of Jason Nesmith, an actor on a defunct TV series, GALAXY QUEST, who was making the rounds of the science fiction conventions, and got roped, along with his fellow actors, into helping out these real-life friendly aliens who thought that the reruns were news documentaries. The aliens were being attacked by an evil force and needed the ‘Questarian’s’ assistance.\\\"
\\\"The aliens came into our lives at a very crucial time. These guys, the ones on the TV series, had been playing these conventions for almost twenty years, and they were getting a little tired of their lives being made up almost exclusively of that, so we projected our anger and frustration on the people near us, the conventioneers. At the same time, the conventioneers began to realize what a bunch of losers we really were.\\\"
\\\"Our director, Dean Parisot, and the writers, Robert Gordon and David Howard, could have gone the SPACEBALLS route -- complete farce, but they chose not to. GALAXY QUEST was funny, but it also had a serious, realistic side. There was a sequence where the Questarians faced having their spaceship sucked into a black hole. As I said, I’m a sci-fi buff, and had done some research on black holes, and I got into an argument with someone about the possibility of traveling through worm holes rather than black holes, and things got pretty involved, and I didn’t realize that I was taking up valuable shooting time, so everybody just told me to shut up, and get back to making the picture.\\\"
\\\"I can go off like that. I can get really involved, have to know everything about a subject. Like, we had these ray guns, phasers, that we were using, and I had to know, ‘What is the range on it? Is it a particle beam, or is it some kind of anti-gravity thing?’ I usually reduce people to tears when I get that way.\\\"
\\\"The role of Jason was something a little bit different for me. Usually I’m typecast as some kind of goofball, but this time I got a real challenge. I played Jason, but I also played his TV alter ego, Commander Peter Quincy Taggart. So you might say I was an actor playing an actor playing an actor. It was a formidable task, but a fun one. It was almost schizophrenic.\\\"
\\\"I really liked the whole concept of these supposedly superior-thinking aliens who believed that these actors were for real. The aliens were so enamored of the Questarians that they went so far as to build a replica of the GALAXY QUEST space cruiser, the NSEA Protector, which was nothing more than a mock-up on the show. The ship looked okay on the surface, but the aliens didn’t know how to fill in the blanks, because they had never seen the whole ship. However, they filled it in as best they could, being very scientific, but a little gullible, and they made it look as ornate as the one we had. Their whole philosophy was, ‘If this is what the ship looks like to you, then we’ll make it look the same way.’ There was a lot of clever stuff going on there, because behind panels on the ship there was gelatin and stuff, this neuro-cellular matter -- I told you I was a sci-fi buff -- kind of a symbiotic type of thing.\\\"

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