Thursday, October 8, 2009

Ming-Na Explores the Universe in SGU

Stargate Universe, the third incarnation of the successful Stargate series, premiered to high ratings and rave reviews this past Friday. The talented cast includes Robert Carlyle (The Full Monty), Ming-Na (ER), David Blue (Ugly Betty) and Lou Diamond Phillips (La Bamba).

For those unfamiliar with Stargate, this particular series focuses on a group of soldiers, scientists and civilians who, while fleeing an attack, travel through a stargate and find themselves stranded far from Earth on a mammoth spaceship known as the Destiny.

I caught up with SGU star Ming-Na recently to discuss her latest role, Twitter and finding true happiness in life.

On the SGU concept: “It’s just a wonderful fantasy to get the chance to see if there is life on other planets, which has been a big question mark for all of us. It seems unlikely that we are alone in the universe.”

On her character, Camile Wray: “She is a very complex character, which was a big reason I wanted to play her. She starts off being someone you think is very by the book. As you get to know her, you feel like there is such a vulnerable side to her. She masks it with her ambition and her drive to prove something.”

On what about SGU will appeal to women: “There are stories that move you and make you feel for these characters. At the same time, there is a lot of great action. Also, there are plenty of hot guys!”

On shooting SGU: “The fun part about shooting a sci-fi show is the green screen that we get to stare at and pretend it’s a million different things. It’s pretty astounding. Another part is the ability that we have as actors to play other elements, as well as different characters, because our bodies get transferred. There are these things called the Ancient stones where we get to swap consciousness. Then you get to play these other situations, enter other people’s bodies — or even an alien’s. I will say that some of the mumbo-gumbo jargon we get to say makes me laugh. Some is just so fantastical that you really have to invest in and believe in these dire situations.”

On her Twitter obsession: “I am a Twitter-holic! David Blue (who plays Eli Wallace in the series) introduced me to it, and I absolutely love it. It is like Internet theater for me. You get instant responses to situations going on around the world. You get such insight and funny, funny links that you otherwise would never find. (Her verified ID is MsMingNa.)”

On finding happiness: “My friends always ask me why I am always so happy, and I tell them the reason is simple: I’ve learned to accept that we all travel down one road — and that road is that we are all going to die. It’s inevitable. You might as well enjoy what you have right now. People think that’s depressing, but it’s not. Everyone goes down that road and you never know when it’s going to come, so just enjoy the day, man.”

Be sure to watch Ming-Na on Stargate Universe on Friday nights at 9/8c on the SyFy channel.

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