Wednesday, December 20

Espenson Back On Battlestar

Source: SciFi Wire

Writer Jane Espenson, who is known to genre fans for Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Tru Calling, told SCI FI Wire that she welcomed a chance to write scripts for the third season of SCI FI Channel's original series Battlestar Galactica. In addition to the Dec. 8 episode, "The Passage," Espenson has co-written the upcoming episode "Dirty Hands" with Anne Cofell Saunders (24).

Espenson, who is currently a staff writer for the upcoming midseason NBC sitcom Andy Barker P.I., said that she was asked back after writing the freelance episode "The Passage." "The writing team, they were so bright, helpful and invested," she said. "I love them! There was a real sense that they cared about every beat of every story they were telling. Any time I needed help or advice, they were all there, acting as if it was their own name going on it, that level of attention. Wonderful."

Espenson has been well-known among fans of genre television for her scripts for Buffy and other series, including The CW's Gilmore Girls. She's also attracted a following of fans interested in the art and business of TV writing on her blog, Jane in Progress.

Despite her other gigs, Espenson said she was able to spend some time getting caught up with the Battlestar writers in order to prep for "Dirty Hands." "I was in the room for the breaking of the story this time, although the general parameters of it had already been decided: the theme and rough shape of it," she explained. "I was very excited to jump back in and tackle some main characters who didn't happen to appear in 'The Passage.'"

Espenson admitted that writing for the acclaimed series was initially "daunting," but added that the second script was easier. "I felt more relaxed about improvising," she said. "This story was less fully broken, and so it was even more obvious that I could move some stuff around and make some decisions on my own. I guess I felt like I'd learned to swim."

Teasing the tone and content of the episode, Espenson said: "It wasn't a story that lent itself to enormous comedy, but it's got its moments, and lots of great emotion. It's one of those stories—always my faves—that looks at the underpinnings of the series, at the supporting players in the fleet. The way my Buffy episodes 'Storyteller' and 'Superstar' both moved a tertiary character to center stage, this episode does that with a whole slice of the surviving human population. I'm very pleased about that."

"Dirty Hands" will air in February 2007. Battlestar Galactica will begin airing on SCI FI on Sundays at 10 p.m. ET/PT, starting Jan. 21. —Tara DiLullo

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