Thanks to Flyer for the heads up.
New rules. New twists. New time shifts. Stephen Williams, the Canadian producer-director of "Lost," says the new paradigm for this season is time travel.
Williams, who directed Wednesday's season premiere, says that first episode sets up the concept. "We also connect the dots from where we left off in season four and set up the context for what will happen next."
Last year, season four saw the rescue of the "Oceanic Six" and followed them into their lives after leaving the island. But life isn't peaceful for them -- especially for Jack Shepherd (Matthew Fox), who descended into a world of drug abuse and suicidal thoughts.
Discovering an obituary in the paper for a "Jeremy Bentham," Jack was distraught and visited the funeral home where his body is located. Standing at Bentham's casket, the camera revealed that Bentham is actually John Locke (Terry O'Quinn), who is now appears to be dead. Then Benjamin Linus (Michael Emerson) shows up, and tells Jack he must return to the island.
Season five begins with Jack and Ben preparing for their journey, while the castaways back on the island try to understand why the sky continues to pulse with purple light. According to one of the freighter crew, the island is skipping through time.
In an interview with CTV.ca, Williams talks about shooting the season premiere, how and why he first joined the crew of "Lost," and which character he identifies with most on the show.
You've directed several episodes of "Lost," but this is your first season premiere. In that regard, was there anything different that you had to accomplish in shooting this episode?
Not really. I've been on the show from the beginning, and to be honest, this episode didn't feel particularly different from any other episode. You just want to make sure you're being as clear and compelling as possible so that the audience feels like they are in good hands, and feels a certain comfort level so that they'll want to stay with the rest of the episodes. From a production point of view though, it wasn't that different.
Most of the time you and Jack Bender alternate directing duties on the series. Do you see much of a difference between your episodes?
We try to be as seamless as possible. However, each episode of our show has its own aesthetic. You try to be true to those elements in each episode, but beyond that we endeavor to maintain a consistency of tone throughout the whole season.
You built a working relationship with creator Damon Lindelof on "Crossing Jordan." Could you tell me a little about how you first became involved with "Lost"?
It was really kind of odd. After working on "Crossing Jordan," Damon and I went our separate ways. I was with New Line pictures, working on a remake of the Jamaican film, "The Harder They Come." I was deep in prep, casting that movie when Damon sent me the pilot for "Lost." I was so busy with the movie that I didn't watch it for ages! Finally my agent called and said, "You should really look at this thing -- at least respond to these people." I watched the pilot twice in one sitting, because I was so captivated. At the end of that I decided I would go to Hawaii for at least one episode, while I was trying to cast the movie, and five years have elapsed since then!
Would you come back to work in Canada once your finished with Lost?
The truth is, I'll go where the work is, so if it's in Canada or L.A., it depends. I'm interested in captivating material with strong characters and cool stories. So wherever the venue is on that enterprise, it doesn't matter to me. Although I did do a film about the David Milgaard story in Canada, and that was a great experience for me and I would love to do more Canadian stories like that. Should those opportunities present themselves, I would be totally thrilled to do that.
For my last question, I'm curious if there's a character you identify the most with, and why?
There are pieces of me in everybody, but if I had to pick one, it would be Jack Shepherd. His character is kind of a relentless seeker of truth in a way, and even though he comes into the series as a repository of science and reason, he's susceptible to the entreaties of faith and belief and increasingly so as the series goes on. The journey of his character is to find a place for both those sides of the temperamental coin, if you will. That journey just makes intrinsic sense for myself.
Thanks to Flyer for the heads up.