Tuesday, April 5, 2011

WonderCon 2011: 'Breaking In'

Alphonso McAuley, Odette Annabele, Christian Slater and Bret Harrison 
of the new Sony Television/FOX comedy 'Breaking In'.
Credit: POParitaville
This past weekend at WonderCon we had the opportunity to sit down with one of the Executive Producers and the cast of the new Sony Television/FOX comedy Breaking In.  The ensemble is lead by Christian Slater (Oz) and includes Bret Harrison (Cameron), Odette Annable (Melanie), and Alphonso McAuley (Cash).  'Breaking In' centers on Contra Security.  They are a firm that shows how vulnerable a companies security is by violating it.  The official description of the show calls them "Corporate America's answer to The A-Team."

While talking about the show, Christian let us know what it's like to lead this ensemble.  "It's been great.  It's a fun character.  I love getting the opportunity to be the guy who comes in and set up the missions, then lets these guys go out and try to achieve what ever the master plan is that I have set up.  I feel very fortunate.  To have an ensemble like this is great.  It's nice to not have it all on my shoulders."

He then went on to tell us how well he gets along with his co-star Bret, and how's been beating him at poker.

Christian went on to say how it's been nice to see how many friends he really does have since he's been working on this.  One of the things he really wanted for his character was to have the original Captain's chair from Star Trek.  Through a network of people, and friends, he was able to get it and they do use it in the show.  When asked, he said it wasn't his appearance in Star Trek 6 that made it possible.  "That didn't give me a lot of leverage.  I was just an Ensign."  But he didn't want the chair to be a replica.  He wanted the real deal, and it is.

In describing his character of Oz, Christian stated, "He's kinda like J.D. in Heathers... This is the kind of job he would have had if he had lived."  

With the show being a comedy, he feels that the atmosphere is lighter.  But no matter if it's drama or comedy, he always has fun at work.  
Presenting the show at WonderCon was fun for Bret Harrison, who plays computer hacker Cameron, as he told us about their Comic-Con themed episode coming up.  "Contra Security is hired by Comic-Con to make sure we hand deliver the Goonies sequel, Goonies 2: The Legend of Sloth to the right hands and not have another Wolverine moment.  Only a hundred lucky fans will get to see it, but Contra is outed by fanboys and every one knows that we have the DVD so everybody is after us."  

In bringing a TV show to WonderCon to show fans, he said, "It's great to get the word out to this many people like this and let people see what we've done before the premiere date... The tone of the show is so different.  What some people do in a one hour, we're doing it in a half hour as an action comedy.  And it's just fun.  It's an excuse for me.  It's like a little vacation."     

With any show looking to be a hit, especially with a comedy, the cast has to be just right.  Executive Producer Doug Robison told us, "We got really lucky.  And it came down to fate with finding all of the right people for the right parts..."    

Odette, who plays the resident lock picker/safe cracker, says that, "I think that this show is going to relate to every single audience.  It's a work place comedy. It's very exciting for me to play this role because it's unlike anything I've ever done."  

Being the only female on the cast, Odette joked about how much time she spends on set with only males and how it's making her crazy.  "I'm really lucky working with these guys because they really make me up my game."  This translates to a fun time both on and off set.  They talked about how they spent their time one day having a Nerf gun war.  

Odette didn't say if this took any time away from watching videos on YouTube learning how to break in to people's homes and pick locks.  Doug told us that by now, all of the YouTube videos are probably her breaking in to homes and cracking locks showing off the skills she's learned.  While that may not truly be the case, she did tell us that as a kid she was a nerd with her own "Spy Club".  

Being a nerd seemed to have been a good pre-requisite for being cast.  We learned this with Alphonso McAuley, who was wearing a Fred Sanford t-shirt and immediately started asking me about my audio recorder (and knew what brand it was before he saw the name).  His character Cash is a fanboy and is described as a mad genius.   

Alphonso told us that this is the type of show that even if he was not on it, it's exactly what he would be watching.  "The comedy is so intelligent but it moves very fast.  The missions are great and the people are funny."

I asked him, as a fanboy, what it was like to actually be at WonderCon showing his project.  He admitted it was his first time there.  "People always have pre-conceived notions of how something is going to be, but I always thought it was going to be just like this.  People dressing up, people having their hidden passions coming out from their imaginations.  People are making up their own superheros.  It's great."

Alphonso then told us about his own superhero, Black Zues.  "I slay villains and MC's."  

That, dear readers, is hilarious.

He did want to solidify his nerd cred by saying that his number one sci-fi show is The Twilight Zone.  "My dad would show me that, and I was like What!  This stuff is crazy. I was so scared.  There was this one episode where these people had big heads and the dude came to the door.  I went Ahhhhhhhh!  Can it get any better than that?"

Talking with everyone really showed what a great time this cast is having together.  With that Doug told us, "At it's core, our show is a comedy.  It's an office comedy.  But our team gets to go out and do these really cool things."

You can experience these cool things when Breaking In premieres this Wednesday on FOX at 9:30 PM ET/PT.

Visit Breaking In online:

Thank you to everyone at Breaking In for their time this weekend.            

What say you?

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