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Stargate SG-1 Cast Interviews: Colin Cunningham

Colin Cunningham Q&A
Solutions Exclusive, 03 February 2003

Biographical Information

Birthday: August 20, 1967
Birth Place: California, USA
Birth Name: Colin Alexander Cunningham

On Stargate SG-1, Colin plays Major Paul Davis, a liason from the Pentagon to the SGC. He has developed a close relationship with SG1 and General Hammond, despite him being an "outsider". Throughout the episodes he appears in, he becomes much more "part of the team", working alongside Major Carter in "Tangent" to rescue O'Neill and Teal'c. He may sometimes play devil's advocate", but you can always be assured that he has the best interests of SG1 at heart every time.

A California native, 34 year old Colin was raised in Los Angeles and took to the stage on a dare. As an accomplished theatre actor, he gained critical praise in 1993 in Eugene Ionesco's Exit The King, and in 1994 pulled off his first hat trick by producing, directing and acting in the stage play Before Eva.

After leaving Los Angeles in 1993, Colin crossed the border into Canada and never looked back. He graduated from the Vancouver Film School, and started off working on no-budget projects solely for the "experience and strong coffee".

Colin's production credits include the short films Just a Number, A Question of Conscience, and Ryan. Producing three stage plays and two music videos, plus his years of experience as an actor, have provided a strong base for his feature debut as both writer and producer, which came with Zacharia Farted.

Having produced 'Zacharia' on a shoestring ("Our budget was what Blair Witch paid for catering,"), the film went on to take a total of 3 'Audience Favourite' awards (Palm Springs International Film Festival, Sedona International Film Festival and Victoria Independent Film Festival) in the 7 festivals it has played throughout Canada, the U.S. and Europe . The film also received a total of 5 Leo award nominations (B.C. Film Awards) last year, including 'Best Picture'.

Colin is currently starring as the conniving, but lovable, Nick Keester, in the television series Big Sound (along with David Steinberg and Greg Evigan), and can also be seen as power agent Herb Kolodny in Showtime's Beggars and Choosers. These he fits in with his recurring guest role as Major Davis on Stargate SG1.

Colin recently co-starred alongside Arnold Schwarzenegger in The Sixth Day and also with Christopher Guest in Castle Rock Pictures' 'mockumentary' release of Best in Show. Colin is currently in development of his latest feature project, of which he will once again serve as writer, producer and actor. Colin is also an accomplished musician, having played saxophone professionally, and guitar.

Hope all is well. My best to everyone. Okie Dokie, here we go..... on to the QUESTIONS.

The Interview

1) You've done both stage and film. Which one do you prefer and why?

~ Tough question for many reasons, but all said and done, I'd have to say film. Ultimately, I'm just a huge film buff. I simply adore the medium.  Though I will say that I respect the 'stage actor' a thousand times more than any film actor that has ever lived. (Unless of course they've done stage.) I met Jonathon Hardy at BOBW this year and although I never mentioned it to anyone, I was in awe of the man. The man is an actors' actor, really knows the stage and he has my utmost respect. In fact, all of the actors there were from the stage and you could tell. Although I took a good share of 'focus' at the Convention, I was personally honored to be an 'actor among actors' and not a guy in the middle of just a bunch of pretty faces. The stage actor is the real actor.

2) How did you get the role of Major Davis on Stargate?

~ A simple audition, as is quite the norm. Had at least a dozen auditions for the show (including 'Daniel'), but it was long after the show was already up and running that I got a break.

3) Were you aware of Stargate before you came to work on it? Had you watched it?

~ Hadn't seen the show, but was certainly familiar with it. Saw the film, etc.

4) What are you working on now?

~ My tan.

5) Had you worked with any of the Stargate regulars on other shows previously?

~ Gary Jones is a good buddy of mine. We've worked on many shows together.

6) What's your most memorable role?

~ Hmmm. I remember a character I played called, 'Speedy' on a tv show called, "THE MARSHALL" starring Jeff Fahey. I really liked that character. Wish I could find a tape of it somewhere.

7) What role would you most like to do?

~ I would love to play 'Sammy Hogarth' in Rod Serlings Teleplay, 'The Comedian'.

8) If you could write an episode focused on Major Davis, what would you write?

~ Davis gets blackmailed by the CIA bad guys and has to lie to the SG team putting them in potential danger. The battle between one's conscience and the protection of someone's life.

9) What would you tell another actor who had never been to one about conventions? About the fans?

~ I'd say to go forth, keep an open mind and to stay away from anyone strapped with dynamite.

10) The first time we met Major Davis, he made things a bit difficult for George Hammond but after that first moment, he has always been on their side. When do you think he decided to help the SGC and why?

~ I think he had orders to follow at first, but after getting to know the SG team he began to see the consequences his 'orders' had on the people themselves, and so I think he began to question, if not have sympathy, for their situation. Ultimately, I think he decided to help them because of duty to his country, loyalty and respect for the team and a secret longing to be a part of the team.

11) Do you have any other conventions scheduled for the upcoming year?

~ Working on a few right now, but can't say anything until confirmed.

11a) How about Dragoncon in Atlanta? We'd love to see you in the USA! [Can you tell the person who asked goes there every year? :} ]

~ Would LOVE to attend Atlanta. But, unfortunately no one has contacted me. Perhaps you could put in a good word for me? All my Convention invitations have been created by amazing people who have written to the promoters of these conventions and asked for me. And for that, I'm grateful.

12) We know very little about Major Davis' background. What kind of family life or upbringing do you imagine his character as having?

~ Davis is alone. Divorced probably. He is a man who's entire life has been about the study of the Stargate and his commitment to the Air Force. I believe that that's why his marriage failed. There is simply something about the Gate that haunts him. And unfortunately, has left him lonely and with a host of failed relationships. He was raised on a farm or out somewhere where the stars can be seen in all their glory. He has spent many, many a night gazing up into the heavens.

13) Many of us have heard that the Stargate set is a lively one. Are there any bloopers or fun out takes from the episodes of Stargate that you participated in which you could share with us?

~ Peter DeLuise is most certainly the court jester of the bunch. And I'd be here for an hour just trying to get past 'morning coffee'.

14) What have you learned that you didn't know before in your role as a military officer? Has anything come up from the military advisors of what you can and can't do?

~ Tons. And everything. Though most of it comes from the Wardrobe department. Those guys know everything with regards to the uniform, and consequently - how to act. Certain uniforms determine behavior, ie. when to salute, how to salute etc. They are extremely knowledgeable. As an aside, I was fortunate enough to have met two of the advisors to the show and these guys actually work inside the Pentagon. Which was really strange, because when 9-11 happened, my first thought was with those guys.

15) If you could expand Major Davis' role on the show, in what direction do you think do you think it would be fun to see him go in?

~ I'd like to see a good scene with him and Teal'c. I don't think Davis has ever really spent any one on one time with a Jaffa, or whatever Teal'cs race is. Sorry, I forgot.

16) Which Maj. Davis episode is your favourite?

~ I'd have to say Prometheus. Only because it was Davis' largest part to date.

17) If you could play any character on Stargate other than Major Davis who would you like to play and why?

~ Daniel. But then again, how could you top Shanks in that role. But, if we can go back in time and Michael was climbing K-2 and wasn't available for the audition, then that's the one I'd have gone for. And the reasons are obvious. Just watch what Michael does with it and you're hooked.

Thanks for the questions everyone!

All the best.

03 FEB 03

Our sincere and grateful thanks to Colin for agreeing to participate in the interview :))

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