ATX Television Festival: Day Three: Roswell’s 15-year Reunion
Photos by Kelly E. Lindner
For me, day three of the ATX Television Festival was all about Roswell, a show I watched when it aired and have continued to marathon about twice a year since then.
As a huge fan, I was ecstatic to attend a Roswell press conference with most of the cast, including writer/creator Jason Katims and Jason Behr (Max Evans), who was introduced last minute as a special guest.
First it was revealed by Shiri Appleby (Liz Parker) that they hadn’t all been together since a dinner after their last night of filming. “And I missed you!” Brendan Fehr (Michael Guerin) said firmly with a pointed, accusing finger at Behr.
There had also been “a lot of babies” according to Behr and Majandra Delfino (Maria DeLuca). “Roswell babies,” Delfino added. “We should have a Roswell play date.”
But the question on the forefront of my mind, and many others, was the likelihood of a Roswell movie.
“I would love to speak any words that Jason (Katims) would write,” Delfino said. “He would never put something out there that isn’t worthy of the fans’ love. It would be up to him. No pressure. I think it’s one of those very tricky things where everybody, of course, has a lot of love for Roswell but nobody wants to do it in a way that leaves sort of a sour taste in people’s mouths.”
“It’s like some shitty reunion of like a band that you used to love. And then they shit all over the memory of what you loved by writing some new piece of shit album,” said Nick Wechsler (Kyle Valenti), who’s always had a unique way with words.
In fact, one thing Chickster got to discuss with Wechsler (randomly in the press room) was the evolution of the Kyle character, who went from jock to funny-Buda-guy.
“I think the more they got to know me, and the more strange things I said, the more they realized the original Kyle character didn’t really fit me,” Wechsler said with a laugh. “So they started writing me a different character.”
He also told Chickster how it feels to move from playing a secondary role (Roswell) to the leading man (Revenge).
“It doesn’t feel much different to me except people respond differently,” Wechsler says. “I’ve never been called a ‘dream boat’ before. But I look the same as I did when I was on Roswell. I mean, I might be scruffier. But it’s not that I’m a hot guy. I’m playing a hot guy. But it’s nice that it’s opened up more possibilities.”
Another Roswellian phenomenon Chickster got to discuss were the similarities between Roswell and the Twilight movies/books. (In fact, there are a slew of websites devoted to this topic.) We most wanted to know if Fehr thought Edward’s gravity-defiant do in the first Twilight movie was inspired by Michael’s hair in season one. (We do, as do many others. Roswell came out six years before the first Twilight book, probably while Stephenie Meyer was enjoying the weeknight Buffy/Roswell WB line-up just like we were.)
“I ultimately don’t think so,” Fehr told Chickster in the press room, before admitting to never seeing the movies. “But if she were to come out and say that, I would be honored and flattered.”
In fact, not seeing the Twilight movies was a common theme among the cast. After Chickster asked Jason Katims if he had noticed similarities between Roswell and Twilight, he admitted to not having seen the film and the majority of the cast hadn’t either. Only Nick had seen “the second to last one” at the premiere, where he was seated by Meyer, he believes, because, “she was a fan. I think because of Roswell.”
And only one cast member had read any of the books (the first one only), but she noticed a parallel: “I was shocked by the similarity of how they’re bonded together…because he saves her from dying,” Delfino said. “That’s how Roswell started.”
When it comes to where Roswell would be today if it were still going, Delfino said (during a cast panel after the Alamo screening of the pilot) that she’d probably have two alien babies, though she wasn’t sure if the Maria and Michael characters would still be together.
“But I do think that Roswell fans, in general, are like none other,” Delfino said. “I think they still sustain the show to this day in such an incredible way. It’s nuts. I truly believe that if they put us back into our Roswell gear and set and all that…everybody would tune in.”
“Can you do that?” this Chickster asked, which elicited laughter, but this quickly ceased as every member of the press waited, holding a collective breath, for the answer.