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Interview with David Hewlett, Yancy Butler and David Chokachi of "Rage
of the Yeti" on Syfy 11/8/11
This was a really fun call. The actors were having such
a great time, and joking around, and laughing...it was hard for us to
even get our questions in! It was such a fun call. Read below and
Syfy Conference Call
Rage of the Yet
David Hewlett, Yancy Butler and David Chokachi
November 8, 2011
1:00 pm CT
Operator: Thank you for standing by. And welcome to the SyFy Rage of the
Yeti conference call.
During the presentation, all participants will be in a listen-only mode.
Afterwards, we will conduct the question-and-answer session. At that
time, if you have a question, please press the 1 followed by the 4 on
your telephone. If at any time during the conference you need to reach
an operator, please press star 0.
As a reminder, this conference is being recorded, Tuesday, November 8,
I would now like to turn the conference over to Gary Morgenstein.
Please go ahead, sir.
Gary Morgenstein: Welcome to the Rage of the Yeti conference call. Iím
delighted to introduce Director David Hewlett and stars, Yancy Butler
and David Chokachi to answer your calls.
Now neither of the Davids were willing to change their first names for
Gary Morgenstein: So just, if anyone asks, just specify which David you
David Hewlett: When you say nerd, Iím moving in.
Gary Morgenstein: Yes. Guys, this is going to be fun.
Operator, would you put the first call through?
Operator: Certainly. Thank you.
Ladies and gentlemen, as a reminder, to register for question, it is a 1
followed by the 4 on your telephone.
And our first question comes from the line of Kyle Nolan with
Please go ahead with your question.
Kyle Nolan: Hi, guys. Thanks for taking time to talk to us.
Man: Of course.
Other Man: Hi, Kyle.
Kyle Nolan: My question is for the nerd.
David Hewlett: Oh great.
Kyle Nolan: So you were on both sides of the camera, both as a director
and it looks like from IMDB that youíre also starring in the film. Can
you talk about what thatís like?
David Hewlett: Insane. I mean everything in Bulgaria is insane
basically, as Yancy can tell you. But itís fairly (great). Iíd have to
say the dates that I had to act and direct were my least favorite days
because all of a sudden I remember that I had to learn why and actually
be in a scene and remember to sort of yell ďActionĒ and then start
So it - yes, I wouldnít advise it. I generally try to avoid that. But
for some reason, every single time Iíve directed so far, it seems I end
up, you know - I knew what the problem is. The problem is Iím cheap and
Iím one less lunch to buy. So I ended up...
Yancy Butler: And now heís saying that he memorizes his lines.
Yancy Butler: Now heís a nerd and a liar. Iím kidding, Dave.
David Hewlett: The (victor always rewrites it) to Yancy.
Yancy Butler: Thatís right.
David Hewlett: And weíll talk about Yancy. Yancy, they love Yancy so
much that they kill her in movies and then bring her back.
Kyle Nolan: Yes. Is that a full resurrection, Butler? What happened
Yancy Butler: Thatís - yes, Iíll never tell.
Kyle Nolan: Yes.
Yancy Butler: Actually I think Iím really - Iím dead now is whatís
Kyle Nolan: Oh youíre a zombie?
Yancy Butler: They just killed me at the end of the film in real life.
Yancy Butler is dead.
Yes, thatís pretty much what happened. Itís a resurrection. I take a
deep breath and apparently I didnít die. Or my character never dies.
David Hewlett: That gives us all hope, Yancy.
Yancy Butler: Thatís...
David Hewlett: Even when weíre shot and dead in a movie, I can suddenly
wake up and come back.
Yancy Butler: I love it.
Yancy Butler: Itís a chance to play cops and robbers again. Are you
David Hewlett: Why donít you do like chasing alligators and shooting
them and stuff?
David Chokachi: Weíre talking about the wrong movie, arenít we, Yancy?
Yancy Butler: Yes, we are. We are. I think so.
Yancy Butler: I have yet to see it. Did they draw alligators in this one
or whatís happening?
Kyle Nolan: That actually brings me...
David Hewlett: Oh yes. Sorry, Kyle.
Kyle Nolan: ...of a follow-up question. So one of the things with these
sci-fi movies is theyíre always - tend to be a bit campy. Do you ever
like start cracking up when you get some of these directions or have to
give some of these directions of like, ďOh the Yeti is going to come
over and rip your arm off; now I want you to be scaredĒ? And does any of
David Hewlett: Yes. The question is when do you stop laughing? You never
stop laughing because youíre laughing all the time, especially when
Yancy, you laugh, like that just gets everybody going.
Yancy Butler: Thatís right. And David giving direction, I mean you just
have to laugh. No, itís really difficult to do that. I think Chokachi
can attest to that. You read the script and it reads like this kind of
sci-fi novel. And then itís like, okay, this creature is over here that
you donít know what it looks like, and now itís under you. And now itís
David Chokachi: Yes. And...
Yancy Butler: ...silly.
David Chokachi: Thereís a scene in the thing where weíre on this Snowcat
and weíre evading the monster Yeti. And Hewlett is outside and the
camera is on a big crane. And heís running around, like I wish we had a
camera of him because heís running around pretending to be the snow
Yeti. And heís like, ďThe Yeti is over here.Ē And Iím bashing in this
side of the snowcat. And now the Yeti is over here. And heís like, roar.
David Hewlett: ...Yeti (cold).
Yancy Butler: Yes, right.
David Chokachi: Yes.
Yancy Butler: Theyíre going to think weíre crazy.
David Hewlett: The footage of me running around might be scarier than
the Yetis weíve got on this. But letís see.
Yancy Butler: Right.
David Chokachi: Oh, thatís bad.
Yancy Butler: Oh God.
Kyle Nolan: Awesome. Thanks guys.
David Hewlett: Weíd never laugh. We just laugh here.
Yancy Butler: Yes, right. Thatís right.
Kyle, I hope we didnít scare you. But itís a great film. And make sure
to watch it, man.
Kyle Nolan: It sounds like a lot of fun. I canít wait to see it.
David Hewlett: You will definitely...
Yancy Butler: Me neither.
Kyle Thanks: Thanks.
David Hewlett: Thanks, Kyle.
Yancy Butler: Thank you.
Gary Morgenstein: Chok.
David Hewlett: Poor, Kyle. He didnít know what hit him.
Gary Morgenstein: Butler.
Hewlett, David, are you not - David, what did you think about the
creatures? Is that your take?
Yancy Butler: Hewlett, David.
David Hewlett: Not my take. I shot the thing and then I was in for three
days for editing. That was it. Thatís all I got. And then I...
David Hewlett: And the first time I saw the movie was like yesterday.
Yancy Butler: I havenít seen anything. They donít show me anything.
David Hewlett: You know what, letís...
Yancy Butler: I donít think they have a television in Bulgaria.
David Hewlett: Well weíre sending ours over, the old one. All the old
Yancy Butler: Thatís right. Right.
David Hewlett: Itís as I like to call it, I call it Awfully Good.
Gary Morgenstein: Oh no.
Yancy Butler: Oh God, David.
Gary Morgenstein: Thatís hard to beat. Well, I donít know. Can these
guys hear us? I better be quiet.
Man: Yes, right.
David Hewlett: They can hear every...
Gary Morgenstein: ...next question please.
Operator: Our next question comes from the - I apologize.
Our next question comes from the line of Jaime Ruby with Scifivision.com.
Please go ahead.
Jamie Ruby: Hi, guys. Thanks for taking the call.
David Hewlett: Hey, Jaime.
Yancy Butler: Great.
Jamie Ruby: Hey. Can you seriously talk about kind of how you got
involved in working on the movie and how it came about?
Gary Morgenstein: Who wants to start on that one?
David Chokachi: We have a nerd.
David Chokachi: Probably the nerd because he directed and acted. Letís
let him start.
Yancy Butler: Yes, itís a good call.
David Hewlett: I didnít - thank you so much, Chokachi.
David Hewlett: Yes, today, Iíve been dying to do some more directing.
And I really felt that if youíre going to do it, trial by fire,
directorís boot camp, there is no place on earth and no types of movie
Yancy Butler: Yes.
David Hewlett: ...harder to make than these sci-fi movies because
theyíre like tiny budgets and you do everything in them. And theyíre
shot in such a quick way in a country that nobody understands what
youíre talking about, which is normal not to understand what Iím talking
about, but Bulgaria specifically.
So itís just - I thought that was a really good sort of like a good way
to sort of polish up on the directing side of stuff. And so I did a
movie with these guys called Morlocks. And I said great, Iíll do
Morlocks. And Iíll do Morlocks if you let me do the Yetis as a director
So, it really worked out well. And then I got to work with these guys. I
mean, it was incredibly difficult; Iím not going to lie. But it was also
just an amazing experience, like there are still - the stories, the
Bulgarian stories of Yetis that I tell are still my favorite tales,
David Chokachi: Oh man.
David Hewlett: Now how did you guys? Did you guys get the call or what -
like how - because casting was tough on this, like it wasdragging people
out to Bulgaria.
David Chokachi: Yes. I mean...
Yancy Butler: Itís always a rough one. Itís always a - Chok, go for it.
David Chokachi: I think - well for me, Iíve done a few of them over
there so I know what it entails, like obviously David and Yancy have
done them over there. So you kind of know what youíre getting into when
you go to Bulgaria to shoot one of these. But if you can kind of like
put your ego aside to understand that youíre going to go a certain kind
of studio and youíre going to be in a certain quasi trailer making this
kind of action-...
David Chokachi: ...adventure movie, and you just canít be going over
there with attitude that youíre making some Shakespeare in the park.
Youíre going over there to do this certain film. And itís long hours and
you got a very limited amount of time to bang it out.
And I donít know, like I read the script and I was like, oh my - my
character is just kind of like this dude with his brother who goes
through this thing like going to blow (unintelligible) up with these
massive guns. I was like, oh my God, this is me to a tee.
So I got - luckily, I got...
Yancy Butler: Sorry.
David Hewlett: Thatís good to know, Chok. Good stuff.
Yancy Butler: Yes...
David Chokachi: ...luckily I got the offer. I think Hewlett probably had
to approve me. And probably, he regretted to this day. But...
David Hewlett: I approved nothing.
David Chokachi: Okay, there you go. So for me, it was I think Iíve
worked for these guys in the past and it was - my last film, I was
shooting at bats. And this one I was shooting at Artic snow monsters
with a gun called the T-Rex, which when you guys get to see, is pretty
David Hewlett: Oh my God. Yes, the introduction to that gun, itís
Yancy Butler: That was hysterical.
David Chokachi: That commercial with the T-Rex...
David Chokachi: ...was hilarious, David.
David Hewlett: Yes. Yes. I call it gun-form basically.
David Chokachi: Yes, great gun-form...
Yancy Butler: Mine, with a big gun. Yes.
David Hewlett: Exactly.
David Chokachi: How about, Yancy? How did you sign up for Rage of the
Yancy Butler: Good one, Chok. Pitch it.
Basically I got a call - Iím actually in Bulgaria now, Jamie, doing my
fourth film for these guys. And so I got the call and I read the script.
And then when I heard that Chok was involved which we worked together
ten years ago, that I was just in. I was like sign me up.
And it is difficult. I mean, both Davids - (David Squared) will attest
to the fact that the great thing about Bulgaria, right - you heard it
Yancy Butler: The great thing about Bulgaria is that the crews are very
eager to please. But itís always very difficult conditions and starting
with weíre doing a snow film in the middle of summer. So that in itself
would always lend to some difficulties. But basically I got the call and
I was on board. And David did an amazing job. That would be flash nerd.
David Hewlett did an amazing job directing. And I donít know how any of
the directors, honestly, pull off getting a day; let alone, getting a
film in a can here.
Itís just, you know, Iím...
David Hewlett: Because we have Yancy Butler.
Yancy Butler: Thatís right. They got one (take) Butler with the one
(take) Yeren. Because itís difficult, the script had a lot of action in
it and youíre kind of editing as you go along for sake of time. And so
you do know what youíre getting into as Chokachi said. But it turned
out, apparently, to be a really great film. Iím looking forward to
David Hewlett: Itís - really...
Jamie Ruby: Great.
David Hewlett: ...itís fun. I mean it is what - these are sci-fi (set)
movies. They are what they are. But theyíre fun. I mean I grew up with
this stuff. I love this stuff. And working with Yancy and Chok, itís
just - I mean itís a certain type of actor - it requires a certain type
of actor who can put up with all of the crap that goes with making these
Yancy Butler: Yes.
David Hewlett: ... and still laugh and still make it enjoyable. And
certainly from a director standpoint, I understand how important it is
to have an actor with a sense of honor and whoís talented enough to be
able to jump in there and do stuff.
Yancy Butler: And vice versa.
David Chokachi: Yes, no...
Yancy Butler: ...I think that it takes a certain kind of director,
truly, to be able to not completely go postal and because of the way
that the schedule lends itself. And if they donít have a sense of honor,
I think if everybody doesnít have a sense of honor involved, weíre kind
of screwed on all fronts.
David Chokachi: We're up the creek.
Yancy Butler: So yes, this is a really...
David Chokachi: This is quite of testament...
David Hewlett: Ömissing from the shoot.
David Chokachi: This is a testament...
David Chokachi: ...to Hewlett because on the first day of shooting, not
only do we almost not make - weíre shooting on the top of Mount Vitosha
and itís a full-arm blizzard. Literally, our transport van almost went
off a cliff on the way up. I swear to God.
Yancy Butler: Thatís right.
David Chokachi: And so we...
David Chokachi: ...we have to take snow machines to the set. We get up
to the set and poor David. First of all, most of the crew - thereís a
heavy language barrier. Itís blowing sideways, snowing sideways. No one
can hear. And Hewlett is trying to call out like where are these props.
And cameras are freezing up. And itís literally like 20 below and
everybody is just kind of standing around with this look in their face
like, ďWhat the (unintelligible)?Ē
Yancy Butler: Yes, and we just get into it. And, yes, and thatís not
even part of the film. So we were...
Yancy Butler: ...getting to work.
David Chokachi: So, exactly. But...
David Hewlett: ...we couldnít make it to the parking lot. I think the...
David Hewlett: ...up the hill because he shot all of the scenes.
Everybody thought I was crazy. I said, ďWell weíll just have to shoot it
here. And theyíre like, weíre in a parking lot.
Yancy Butler: Thatís right.
David Hewlett: I think we had fun. The snow is up there.
David Chokachi: Thatís right, man.
David Chokachi: Thank you, Jamie.
Jamie Ruby: I just want to add...
Jamie Ruby: ...I just wanted to ask, you did say you filmed this in
Jamie Ruby: Is this...
Gary Morgenstein: Jamie, wait. Weíll have the followups after please.
Jamie Ruby: Okay. Sorry.
Gary Morgenstein: ...please. Thanks.
David Chokachi: We talk a lot.
Yancy Butler: Yes, we do.
Gary Morgenstein: Thatís okay.
Yancy Butler: Yes. Because we miss each other.
David Chokachi: I know.
Yancy Butler: We have to...
Yancy Butler: Hewlett, where are you?
Gary Morgenstein: Operator, can you put the next call through?
Operator: Our next question comes from Suzanne Lanoue from the TV
Please go ahead.
David Hewlett: Hello, Suzanne.
Suzanne Lanoue: Hi everyone. Hi.
Yancy Butler: Hi.
Suzanne Lanoue: I was wondering - I couldnít find...
David Hewlett: Hello?
Yancy Butler: Hello?
I think we lost Suzanne.
David Chokachi: No, Iím teasing, Jamie.
Operator: Ms. Lanoue - it appears weíve lost connection with Ms. Lanoue.
I will put the next caller through.
Yancy Butler: Poor Suzanne. She didnít even have a chance.
Operator: Our next question comes from Allison Ebner from
Allison Ebner: Hi guys. How are you today?
Man: Good. How are you?
Man: It sounds like - did you knock Susan up? Was it you who did that?
Allison Ebner: So in sci-fi movies alone, you know, thereís been
zombies, banshees, hybrids like the sharktopus and so many others. And
none of you are really strangers...
Yancy Butler: Sharktopus.
Allison Ebner: ...to the world of science fiction and the supernatural.
So how would you rate the Yeti in terms of these other monsters?
David Hewlett: Top of it.
Yancy Butler: Well, I didnít know there was a sharktopus. So I would
have no idea. Thatís new to me.
David Hewlett: ...sharktopusÖ
Yancy Butler: Thatís a cameo that David played.
David Hewlett: Well I like the Yeti because thereís a nice sort of a
legend quality to them. Do you know what I mean? And also, just, Iím a
huge fan of snow movies, like I just think snow looks so fantastic on
film. So Iíd have to rate our Yetis high. Big teeth, big claws and a
snowstorm works for me.
Yancy Butler: And you know what they say about big teeth, big claws,
David Chokachi: Thatís right, Yancy.
Yancy Butler: Thatís right. Big snow.
Gary Morgenstein: ...thereís a transcript of this.
Yancy Butler: Yes.
David Hewlett: Oh yes.
Now remember, Yancy, theyíre recording this.
Yancy Butler: Yes, I know. I know. I know. Itís late for me here.
David Hewlett: Yes, I like the Yeti thing. I like the fact that they
really played with the history of it, the idea that thereís a ship that
was transporting new things. And, I am a big fan of Corman stuff and all
of the Ed Wood type movies. Hey because weíre basically making Ed Wood
movies here. I mean we try to do a ton with a little.
So Iím a big fan of (blood), horror and monsters basically. So if Iím
not making them, Iím watching them. So...
David Chokachi: And the cool thing about the Yeti I mean - which is good
and bad is the thing is camouflaged. So it has this predator ability to
kind of go invisible and stalk its prey. So, Iíd add at any one point
during our shooting, Hewlett would be like, ďNo, itís invisible right
now,Ē and then ďNo, itís visible. Look out.Ē
Yancy Butler: Right. Yes.
David Hewlett: Of course, when you actually see the movie, youíll see
how visible it is while itís invisible. But itís not very good at being
invisible Iíd say.
Yancy Butler: Yes.
David Hewlett: Maybe it thinks itís invisible.
David Chokachi: But it was cool because one thing I think about for us
as actors, the Yeti allowed, especially my character kind of whoís not
afraid to crack a joke during any kind of stress situation in the film,
theyíre kind of almost endless one-liners of - basically they have to
call the Yeti. And, you know, Yeti Burgers and Yeti this and that, and
it goes back and forth about this kind of invisible snow monster. And it
allows for a bit of levity to kind of come amongst - they called it a
group whoís literally in this really difficult situation where weíre cut
off from the world and weíre trying to make our escape.
So I think the Yeti is scary. But it does allow for quite a bit of great
horror amongst the survivors and see if we try and make it out.
David Hewlett: Yes, the (monkey references) and the (ape references).
David Chokachi: Yes. And none of us can say Yeti. And they kept coming
up to me saying, ďYou look like youíre saying (urine), Chokachi. Would
you say Yeti?Ē Iím like, ďIím saying Yeren. What?Ē
Yancy Butler: I do like the fact that itís like this legendary, I like
what Hewlett said and David. When youíre dealing with these creatures
that are kind of made up, a (sharktopussy), if you will, at least the
Yeti is somewhat established in Folklore. Yes, I said it. I said it.
David Chokachi: (Sharktopussy). Yes, Butler.
Yancy Butler: ...you know, and thereís something thatís - right. And
thatís something thatís sort of real about that.
David Chokachi: ...(sharktopussy) tonight.
Yancy Butler: Thatís right. Whatís your name?
And, so I think that you need some levity in these kinds of films
because it could go south any second. But I think we have a really good
film here. And the situation with these creatures, inevitably in these
sci-fi films, always lends itself too. Thereís some tension and some
drama on how do these people get out of this. And so if there arenít
some one-liner jokes in there, you can kind of sink with all of these.
And I think itís really imperative that we have those. And Chok really
delivered those with aplomb and grace, if you will.
David Chokachi: Yes, I actually had...
Yancy Butler: ...which I never thought I would use that with...
David Chokachi: ...a keyword, Butler.
David Hewlett: I donít think I can discuss...
Yancy Butler: Thatís all right.
David Hewlett: Ö(unintelligible) if I was in Bulgaria now.
David Chokachi: Oh (unintelligible).
Yancy Butler: Did we lose you? Are you scared? Did - Suzanne came back and
kicked the (unintelligible) out of - is she still with us?
Suzanne Lanoue: Yes. Great. Thanks.
Yancy Butler: Okay. Thank God.
David Chokachi: ...next question, please.
Yancy Butler: Thank God. We thought they got you, too.
David Chokachi: Weíre just going off on these...
Operator: Our next question, we have Susan Lanoue back on the line from
the TV MegaSite.
David Chokachi: Sheís back.
Sheís back. How are you my dear?
Suzanne Lanoue: Hi.
Yancy Butler: Hi, Susan.
Suzanne Lanoue: Can you hear me this time?
Yancy Butler: Yes. We were worried about you, honey. How have you been?
Suzanne Lanoue: Oh. Thank you. All right. I just have a bad phone.
Yancy Butler: Yes.
Suzanne Lanoue: Donít ever buy Citrus - Motorola Citrus, please.
Yancy Butler: Yes. Donít ever come to Bulgaria. There was a crank on the
back of mine. So youíre good.
Suzanne Lanoue: Yes.
Yancy Butler: Iím talking about sheepís tail.
Hit me, Suzanne. Whatís happening?
Suzanne Lanoue: I was wondering, I couldnít find much information online
about the, you know, actual description of the movie. Can you tell me,
if itís not too much of a spoiler, how many people actually go up the
mountain? Is it just the two of you or is there a bunch of them?
David Hewlett: No, thereís a whole team. Thereís a whole team...
Suzanne Lanoue: Okay.
David Hewlett: ...- well thereís two separate teams. And basically one
goes in and gets in trouble, and then the new team comes in to help them
out and of course then gets in trouble themselves.
So itís kind of fun. Youíre following sort of two little teams and then
they - but then they meet up and basically - well they meet up and then
start arguing and then, all sorts of (unintelligible) as well.
Yancy Butler: And then...
David Hewlett: And nobody gets along.
Suzanne Lanoue: And then - right. And then I guess you have to have a lot
of people because some people have to die before you get down to the
bottom of the...
David Chokachi: You got it.
Yancy Butler: Weíll never tell, Susan.
David Hewlett: Yes.
David Chokachi: Thereís a very strong culling aspect to the group.
David Hewlett: Sci-fi movies always do, donít they? They always - you
always have a certain setup. I mean what was nice about this one - and I
think, we were very lucky and that we got along with David and Yancy, we
got a number of great actors from - well...
Yancy Butler: Yes, for sure.
David Hewlett: ...Matt playing Davidís brother, whoís fantastic, and
also fantastically tall.
David Hewlett: All these fantastic British actors as well, like Jonas
David Chokachi: Jonas.
David Hewlett: You know, James Patric Moran whoís not actually British,
but another really great - a great guy to have around.
Yancy Butler: But he could be. He plays a lot on TV.
David Hewlett: He totally could have been British if he needed to. Laura
Haddock - you know, great actors. The idea was to bring in actors that
you didnít immediately think, oh theyíre dead. So...
Yancy Butler: You know, thatís true, David. Thatís very true.
Yancy Butler: Because usually, at the opening scene of some actors, - in
any movies, really, youíll go like, oh that poor guy, heís out pretty
Yancy Butler: ...you really canít tell whoís going to survive...
Yancy Butler: ...nor could we at the beginning of each day, but yes.
David Hewlett: But these movies still usually start with a couple of
sort of Slavic actors who are difficult to understand andÖ
David Chokachi: Right.
David Hewlett: Öso we were trying to avoid that. And we did more than
that, right? We got - Rosalind Halstead, thereís another one. Iím
looking at the IMDB andÖ
Yancy Butler: Thatís because youíre good. I was like, damn...
David Chokachi: Heís really attached to the film.
David Hewlett: And we really - we had such a great...
Suzanne Lanoue: All right. Thank you.
David Chokachi: Yes. Thank you.
Yancy Butler: No problem. Thank you.
David Hewlett: Well remember Mark?
David Chokachi: Yes.
Yancy Butler: Sure.
David Hewlett: Yancy was like amazing. She was - I thought they were
going to get married, those two.
David Chokachi: Mark? Do you mean Mike? Mike Straub?
David Hewlett: Mark. No, no, Mark, the guy who played Bud. They had so
much - Yancy and him had so much fun on that set. I was like, oh come
on. Itís like a party.
Yancy Butler: I know. We had a blast. We had a great cast, man.
Yancy Butler: That was so cool.
David Hewlett: Yes. Yes, we were very lucky.
Yancy Butler: Thank God, all of us got along famously and everything.
David Hewlett: Yes, itís true. It would have been - it could have been
difficult or more than.
Yancy Butler: Yes. Except Chok and I clearly hate each other. But other
David Chokachi: Yes.
Yancy Butler: Yes.
David Hewlett: Yes. And...
Yancy Butler: We never got along.
Gary Morgenstein: Operator, can we have the next call please?
Man: Oh well...
Yancy Butler: Thatís (caller) Number 6.
Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Chris Boyd from
Please proceed with your question.
David Hewlett: Hey, Chris.
Chris Boyd: Hi everyone. How are you doing?
David Chokachi: Great. How are you?
Yancy Butler: Good. How are you?
David Hewlett: Weíre having too much fun.
Chris Boyd: Good. Good.
Yancy Butler: Yes. Weíre like...
Chris Boyd: Right on.
So there have been a lot of good questions this morning. I donít have
many left to ask. So Iím going to ask you guys a little bit of a geeky
one. But Iíd - you know, if everyone wants to answer, thatís cool. Itís
necessarily just for David.
Chris Boyd: So this is...
Yancy Butler: Weíll be the judge of that, Chris.
Chris Boyd: ...- right on. So this is a great legend to work off of,
like a whole Yeti, abominable snowman, Big Foot kind of animal is a
favorite subject, a crypto zoologist. I was wondering what research did
you guys do to kind of prepare yourself to deal with a Yeti?
David Hewlett: Wikipedia.
Chris Boyd: Wikipedia?
Yancy Butler: Oh good answer.
David Hewlett: Itís always the first place to go, right.
Chris Boyd: Of course.
David Hewlett: But also we had the right - Craig Engler was - and Brooks
were the writers on this. And they just did a really good job I think of
integrating some history in with the with the usual monster stuff.
I always like when the monsters are based on sort of historical things
rather than just science fiction stuff. I find it much easier to get
into when youíre grounded in some time of the history. And I think they
did a great job with that.
But the reality is in films, there isnít a lot of time to go into the
true geeky stuff that I love. Weíre getting the other stuff that I love
which is all action and effects and thereís running and shooting and
being attacked by giant orangutan (unintelligible).
Chris Boyd: Wow. Thatís great.
Yancy Butler: It's easier for somebody like that because as a matter of
fact during this film a lot of the characters are learning as the
audience is learning really what the capabilities of these creature are
And we do mention some of the lore in the script and through our lines
but I think more as an actor for me I was concentrating more on what a
team leader would do in that situation or how that actually goes down.
We don't have many search and rescue New York City although we should
but that's not something I grew up with.
Yancy Butler: That was more what right yes, Central Park search and
rescue. That's more what I was kind of researching but which was good
because I didn't know much about these creatures at all.
And my character and David's character is kind of finding out, what
hybrid, if you will, to use, saying and what their capabilities are as
the audience is.
So we didn't have to know much. David was the one that had to know much.
Man: Excellent, yes David - go ahead.
David Hewlett: I was going to say David and Yancy are playing like the
coolest top hunter types. They playÖ
David Hewlett: Öyou know, of course naturally.
Yancy Butler: Right, right.
David Hewlett: I think they weren't so worried about the creatures and
the nature of the creatures. I mean the character that really played on
that was my character, the (Ted) character.
There was a great scene where he sits down and he opens up this hook and
he reads about these (yeti) and all of the cast sort of gathers around
and listens to him, you know talk about how these things took out like
an army of soldiers back in the day and stuff.
So it's kind of a - that's one of my favorite scenes and it was shot
because we ran out of time and I only had time to do one shot.
Yancy Butler: I remember it is all coming back to me.
David Hewlett: Yes remember that? It worked out fantastic, it's great
because it such like a bedtime - let me tell you about a bedtime story
about a horrific snow monkey monster of some type.
Man: Yes that's great David. I've noticed, after Planet of the Apes
movie and the Morlock movie and now the Rage of the Yeti. The whole
mutant monkey thing really seems to be working out for you. Is this
going to be a...
Woman: You should see his cameo on the side of him - kidding.
Man: Well actually I saw that - they tweeted that picture of you when
you just got filming and you had all icicles all over your face.
David Hewlett: Oh my GodÖ
Man: It looked like it was a pretty difficult shoot.
David Hewlett: That's the beginning of the shot. That's what I looked
like at the beginning of the shot.
Man: Oh that was the first day?
Yancy Butler: That's what I asked about but he told me was married.
Man: They didn't need any (CG) because you were just the Abominable
David Hewlett: Yes but he was always pretty.
Yancy Butler: Don't go on.
David Hewlett: We were covered in ice.
Yancy Butler: I'm sorry I didn't hear that. (Chris) did you? What was
David Hewlett: Look Chokachi and I wereÖ
Yancy Butler: No David's pretty. Chok's pretty.
Man: With the frozen icicles hanging off the little mini beard.
David Hewlett: You know I'm in (unintelligible) but glowing and warm in
those lovely white snowsuits.
Yancy Butler: Glowing yes.
Man: Everything is just melting around you all the fake snow.
David Hewlett: Exactly. Yeti was ourÖ
Yancy Butler: Well it wasn't all fake. It wasn't all fake, trust me. I
was just talking about that day because as I said I'm presently in
Bulgaria and it is very, very cold and I'm doing a summer film.
So there are people in bikinis and I had to go in the water and think I
could just feel my big right toe and that was 15 days ago. So I'm
hanging in there but we were on top of this mountain as - what's that?
Man: What water did you go in?
Yancy Butler: (Lake Eastgar).
Yancy Butler: I went in the lake. I got my hand on my heart. You know I
did, you know I did. I mean repeatedly.
And they were looking at me like what a difficult actress, what's your
problem? Right exactly. So I'm, you know, because I'd like to live.
But in any case but we're up on top of this mountain and I remembered
poor David Hewlett, we were trying to get the day and the film wasn't
brought up to the mountain but hot toddies were or something.
And he said well let me turn the camera around and I said why turn the
camera around? Turn us around because you can't see 10 feet in front of
your face. And it was - so it was cold. It was windy and cold.
And then yes it was I think it was about I don't know 82 Fahrenheit when
we had the fake snow machines going so yes it was good time, good times
was had by all.
Man: I'm not sure which is worse. The fake snow machine or the real snow
because in the fake snow machine stuff was literally shooting like these
salt crystals like in your mouth, your eyes and you show up to set the
next day and your eyes are swollen shut from the salt intake. You'd be
like what the hell.
Man: Yes it would be in your clothes like for days you are finding it -
it's sort of your body sort of spits it out as the day (unintelligible).
Yancy Butler: That is so hot.
Man: You need a good cleansing I guess.
Yancy Butler: Is that what that was?
Man: Well hey guys I don't want to take up too much time from everyone
else but it looks great and we look forward to seeing it. And you guys
are awesome. Thanks so much.
Man: Okay thank you very much.
Man: Thank you.
Operator: Our next question comes from the line of Diane Morasco with
Morasco Media. Please proceed.
Gary Morgenstein: Hello Diane.
Yancy Butler: Diane are you with us? Do you copy? Over.
Diane Morasco: Yes hi I wanted to say that if you are going to do
(Sharktopussy) I want to be in it.
Yancy Butler: That's my kind of girl. What are you doing later? I'm
nowhere near you but there we have it.
Diane Morasco: Okay I have to ask you...
Man: You guys want to be alone?
Diane Morasco: When in New York.
My question is that when you are playing these characters and you are
taking on these roles do they ever revisit you when filming is done? Or
do you discard them and that's it.
Yancy Butler: I'm sorry for me?
Diane Morasco: Actually for one take Butler.
Yancy Butler: That would be me. I'm sorry can you repeat all of that. I
just wrapped - that's right and - Chok the person that wants to blow
things up. Unibomber Chok. There we go, that's easy.
David Chokachi: Took the T. Rex home with me and I've actually been
under house arrest for a while because I had this huge house and was out
trying to blow (unintelligible) stuff up.
I can't shed the Jonas character.
Yancy Butler: That's right he is blowing up stuff in his house. I'm
sorry I wrapped a film at 4 o'clock this morning and then I am operating
on about three hours of sleep.
So I'm wondering if I've been revisited today just as Yancy Butler. So
can you repeat that question please? So I can give you a good answer.
Diane Morasco: Of course, of course. I was just wondering that the
character that you play and this for of course David as well as you. Do
they come back and revisit ever? Or can you discard them?
Yancy Butler: Well you - I'm playing a character right now that clearly
can't be destroyed. I thought she was destroyed and I pretty much
contractually made sure that she was going to die at the end of the last
film. But it's all in the editing and so yes you just find out that she
was a bit horribly maimed and knocked unconscious.
So I'm back and better than ever but anything is possible in the sci-fi
realm and thank God for that because we might never work again as a
And there's a joke there too but I'm really tired. But yes, I mean you
can do anything. We're talking about snowmen and at the moment
(Croctopussies) and anything is possible. The day is still young.
David Chokachi: When you play these characters I mean obviously you
bring a sense of yourself I mean I think all of us do as actors. That's
kind of your thing. There's no matter what the character is there's a
part of it thatís you and who you are as a person.
So in essence and whatever the script is and for this, this happens to
tap into an exaggerated version of me which is to a tee like this guy
who loves to be in these stupid situations and have a smile on his face.
It's kind of like what I like to do anyway.
So you kind of...
Yancy Butler: Sounds like several nights in Toronto huh David?
David Chokachi: Exactly. There's Chokachi.
So, that part obviously you don't shed but maybe you shed, obviously,
the part where you are running around with five guns strapped to you and
some of that.
But I think each one of us brings our own personality to our character
and insert a fair amount of that.
So I think that stays with you obviously when you go home and you go
into your next project and your wife or significant other is like, "Dude
you are not on set anymore. Cut the crap, stop talking like that."
David Hewlett: No my wife gives me 15 minutes. So I would come home and
she'd give me 15 minutes to stop acting like whatever character I was
supposed to be doing that day. And then it was like you want to save the
marriage? You've got 15 minutes in character then I want my husband
David Chokachi: Is that what she does with you?
David Hewlett: Yes I've got 15 minutes that's it. Iím allowed to get
away with basically anything for 15 minutes and then it's like okay, all
right you are back.
With Chok if you get him out of character you just have to take his guns
David Chokachi: Exactly.
Yancy Butler: Like a little boy. It's hard I think because you have to
bring some of yourself to a character and especially with something like
this where you are having fun on the set and bringing your own
personality to it, that's the part that's fun.
And I think it's, you don't have any time to be a method actor on any
sci-fi film. You don't have that kind of time.
So, you are bringing yourself to the playground and is it hard to let go
of it sometimes? Yes, sure, I think I'm 10 feet tall and bulletproof for
20 years now but it has worked for me. So there you have it.
And I don't have a significant other or a wife or a boyfriend. So hence
I don't know if I can let go of it that easy. Put that in the press.
David Chokachi: You can come over my house Butler anytime. We can
snuggle and we complain.
Yancy Butler: That's right.
Man: Yes likewise, it will be a crowded bed.
David Chokachi: Yes that's all right.
Although Hewlett's character I'm not sure like in this film which I got
to screen because I wanted to - yesterday.
There's all these - he plays this billionaire mogul and I love it. He
surrounds himself and almost all of his scenes are surrounded by pretty
much like the hottest Bulgarian women he could find.
And I was just laughing my ass off. I was like oh wow, Hewlett's loving
this. How many takes did he do of this scene?
Yancy Butler: Yes right.
David Hewlett: I should have been doingÖ
Yancy Butler: I can't wait to see this.
David Hewlett: I definitely should have enjoyed it more. I think you
guys hit it. I think in these films it's such sort of flying by the seat
of your pants on a lot of the stuff anyway. You have to use your
reactions to stuff.
And I think that I always prefer that because I think it makes it more
real. I mean silly as these films are there has to be a sense of peril.
I think what's great about David and Yancy and I like to think myself as
well is that while we laugh at this stuff and we'll make all sorts of
jokes and kill each other cracking up on this stuff.
We still know that you got to take it seriously because if you are
mugging the camera and if you are pretending that you are better than
the material then you just lose the audience.
This is about enjoying, it's about getting lost in something that's more
than just the special effects and the limitations of the movie. It's
about just allowing yourself these sort of like comicful-like
Yancy Butler: I think yes to - very well said. I think to elaborate on
that what David said is that if we don't believe them especially because
we are not seeing them yet nor do they sometimes have an idea of what
they are going to actually (CGI) in there that if we don't believe them
as the characters in the story, nobody is going to believe them.
David Hewlett: Exactly.
Yancy Butler: So you have to play that peril very seriously. Otherwise
there has to be conflict and there has to be a sense of danger. For as
much as we do laugh and kid around because we enjoy each other's company
and working together because it is like boot camp.
If you don't sell that during the moment, nobody is going to believe it
once they are seeing it as a whole. So I think it really tests the
skills as both - I know it does actually as both acting and I'm sure for
the director to sell this.
Something that is not even there for us and to sell it as dangerous as
possible is a testament to everybody's skill because sometimes the
director hasn't even seen a storyboard truly or even a drawing of what
things are actually going to look like.
So it is quite difficult.
David Hewlett: Yes it's definitely an arcane art.
Yancy Butler: Yes if you will.
Diane Morasco: Thank you. I do have another question I'm not sure if
they are taking follow up.
Gary Morgenstein: I'm sorry but we're running low on time. I'm sorry.
Diane Morasco: That's okay thank you.
Yancy Butler: Gary has to be the bad guy. He doesn't mean it.
Gary Morgenstein: I'm very nice.
Yancy Butler: I know we can tell. No I said he has to be. That's his
role. I know sorry hon.
Gary Morgenstein: Thank you so much Diane.
Operator: And our next question is a follow up question from Jamie Ruby
with Scifivision.com. Please proceed.
Jamie Ruby: Hello again. Well if I could go off topic for one second. I
have a fan on Twitter begging me to ask about this. Yancy and David
could you talk about what it was like to get to work together again
Yancy Butler: Oh my God it was like a dream come true - I mean it has
been, what eight years, Chok since we worked together?
David Chokachi: Yes, yes.
Yancy Butler: When they said - I said is anybody attached and they said
well we are talking to David Chokachi and I was like the minute he says
yes you have to tell me. And during Witchblade we were a family.
I mean we were really a family and that was a very tough schedule and
16-18 hour days. And here was a movie that did so well that they turned
it into a series which was unexpected for all of us.
And I mean clearly we, David and I and all of the guys on that but we
have a special relationship and are quite close and it's a dream come
I mean for such a difficult shoot especially I don't know if there were
some days I could haven't gotten through it without David's hor.
David Chokachi: Yes you needed like...
Yancy Butler: David.
David Chokachi: Like Hewlett would say, when you go and sign up for
these movies, you are not going to Vancouver or Toronto to be on some
You are going to Bulgaria which is in itself a very - I mean it is a
beautiful country it has its own environment of this kind of harsh
ex-Soviet Union kind of feel to it which is kind of scary in a sense.
And you want to be surrounded by people who not only are professionals
because you can't be there (unintelligible) around and like not getting
You want to be surrounded by people who have been there and done it and
also are not going to be just complaining that they are out in the
middle of snowstorm which we were for like a week.
We were shooting on the top of the mountain and Hewlett looked like he
was literally one heartbeat away from being like an ice mass. He never
Yancy Butler: I think he looks like that most days he was just using
that as an excuse.
David Chokachi: Yes and with Yancy, her and I obviously had worked
together for three years solid and would have been through every, like
she said it becomes a family when you are on a series.
And you know everything about the other person and there is that
closeness lends itself to also the great work you produce because you
are intimate in a sense.
Once you get in front of that camera you have this bond. So yes as soon
as that - I had the same response like when they were like Butler will
be playing that character.
Unfortunately the bummer is, I mean I don't want to be a spoiler but her
character runs - we run kind of parallel story lines for a little while
Yancy Butler: I know that stinks.
David Chokachi: Yes we kept saying like when the hell are we shooting
together? We kept looking at the call sheet and it was like...
Yancy Butler: I know.
David Chokachi: But...
Yancy Butler: We were two ships passing in the night.
David Chokachi: But, as actors and David has obviously been on a series,
anytime you get to work with a fellow castmate again is like a true
blessing, so this was just like an absolute bonus.
And yes you know you are going in - it's like going into battle with
someone you've done battle with before basically.
Yancy Butler: Yes that's very well said.
David Chokachi: And it gives you a sense of like no matter what they
throw at us we're going to have a good time and we're going to do good
Yancy Butler: And have each other's backs and absolutely. It's a
camaraderie that is necessary on these things and to have already
established that and to be as close as we were was icing on the cake or
icing on David's face.
David Chokachi: Butler and I have this whole superstition before every
take on Witchblade like if we were shooting an exterior scene somewhere,
I'm sure you are going to love this but her and I would both spit. Would
like get a loogy and it was kind of like a good luck charm.
Yancy Butler: And there it is ladies and gentlemen.
David Chokachi: Unfortunately when we spat outside on this one it turned
to ice before it hit the ground. So itÖ
Yancy Butler: And people wonder why I am single. And David just told
David Chokachi: It's a good like Inside the Actor's Studio, wouldn't
they love that one? How do you guys get in the moment? We spit.
Yancy Butler: Yes that's right we spat. We spat. We had a spitting
contest. Yes that's when I fell in love with David really.
Man: That's your favorite sound?
Yancy Butler: So Twitter that.
David Chokachi: So Twit on that.
Jamie Ruby: I did.
Yancy Butler: Of course you did. Twit on that. Nice David, nice.
Jamie Ruby: All right well thank you so much.
Yancy Butler: No, no thank you for walking us down that fond lane. Thank
you very much.
David Hewlett: I am trying to get images of spitting out of my head.
Operator: And we have another follow up question from the line of Diane
Morasco from Morasco Media. Please proceed.
Yancy Butler: And better than ever. Diane's not back.
Diane Morasco: Yes hello. Can you hear me now?
Yancy Butler: Yes.
Diane Morasco: Thank you, thank you. I want to know what part in the
movie or what memorable part that you were doing, a scene that it became
comfortable that this role was yours. Instead of stepping in and let me
get used to it. When did it define?
Yancy Butler: David?
David Chokachi: Chokachi or the nerd?
Yancy Butler: Blow (unintelligible) up.
David Chokachi: Well for me I kind of think like almost in every scene I
mean I hope it doesn't get annoying because I got to see the film and I
think it actually lends itself to - it's going to allow - I'm the kind
of comic relief in a sense.
And I think it's good because if all us were dead serious in these
moments that we saw the invisible monsters, people are going to be like
come on, really. I mean like David said there is a fine line about - you
can't be mugging the camera. There has to be a sense of reality that
we're all playing which my character does.
But my character also happens to be like a major thrill seeker so he
loves the fact that he is surrounded by a bunch of invisible monsters.
And so these one-liners when I first read them, I'm like these are kind
of hard. They are hard to pull off as an actor because you got to be
truthful in the moment.
And first they were hard but more and more as we got into it, it found
its own rhythm for me and I was like oh my God, these things, these
little one-liners, you know are great.
And then when I actually saw the film I was actually extremely thrilled
because they allow everybody else a little bit to go either, shut up you
idiot with some sort of a look or it breaks the tension of the moment.
And it allows us all to be human beings I think.
So I think once I got a few of those one-liners in I kind of felt like
this character is kind of - this character is me and I can really run
with this and have a lot of fun and also be truthful to the piece.
So that was it for me and Jonas.
David Hewlett: You and Matt had a great dynamic together too.
David Chokachi: Yes and obviously he would say my brother which is
perfect played by Matthew Anderson.
Yancy Butler: Oh it was great.
David Chokachi: He's - like David said, he's this tall, lanky, good
looking kid and he plays this character Jace, my brother and we're both
kind of adventure kind of guns for hire almost like Indiana Jones kind
And he takes everything so seriously and so literally that we have this
banter that goes back and forth about whose like turn it is to go do
what and it's a - I thought it came off fantastic.
And David Hewlett was instrumental in like getting us into that rhythm
of finding that banter, making it quick and not because you can beat it
to death where the audience is like please shut up.
And not once when I watched it did I have that reaction. I thought it
was really well done. And Hewlett kept that kind of a close eye on
whether or not keeping that banter real and fun at the same time and I
think it was done beautifully.
David Hewlett: It's a really nice dynamic. I mean you guys are really
fun together. It was a nice - I entirely bought you were brothers, you
David Chokachi: Did you - but when you saw it, yes that's fantastic. I
mean I did too I was like Jesus this is like me and my younger brother.
David Hewlett: Yes and it's neat. It's really neat.
David Chokachi: Especially we have so limited time, read through there
is really no rehearsal and luckily like - to the previous question,
luckily Yancy and I worked together before so that allows us to be like
very comfortable on camera right away.
But for the rest of us it's like shaking hands in the read through and
then waking up at 5:30 the next morning and going to work and pretending
we have either known each other forever.
But Matthew who played my brother was awesome and everybody was a pro in
the sense that you don't have the luxury of time on like some other
movies where you get to know the other actor. You've got to jump in,
just jump in full on in the deep end and go for it.
And we all did, all of us including Hewlett and obviously Yancy. Because
that is the key to getting things to work is there are no buffer days,
there are no days to kind of warm up. You've got to like be swinging for
the fence on, pitch 1 in inning 1. So and I think we all did that.
David Hewlett: Well put.
Yancy Butler: Very well put.
Gary Morgenstein: Are we done? I think we are done. I think we are out
David Chokachi: No.
Gary Morgenstein: No I know it's hard to believe. We're having so much
David Hewlett: But then you have to go back to Bulgaria and David goes
back to his life.
David Chokachi: Yes and I have a new baby...
Yancy Butler: I know.
David Chokachi: I got to go change a diaper.
Yancy Butler: Oh my God David are you kidding me?
David Chokachi: No Butler did you hear?
Yancy Butler: No.
David Chokachi: Yes I told Hewlett.
Yancy Butler: Oh my God honey, I'm going to cry. Congratulations. I know
- well we'll talk - congratulations.
David Chokachi: Thank you so much. She's amazing. She's five weeks old
Yancy Butler: Oh my God.
David Chokachi: It's a girl. Her name is Brit. B-R-I-T.
Yancy Butler: Oh honey congratulations.
David Chokachi: I was about to buy David's dad's book and blah, blah,
blah this long story about, because we were - it took us a while to get
to this moment. But honestly it is like the best thing that has ever
happened in my life. It...
Yancy Butler: Oh David this is - what a blessing. Congratulations honey
that is wonderful.
David Chokachi: No and if we're - I think Hewlett are you in LA?
David Hewlett: I'm in LA.
Yancy Butler: You are and for how long?
David Chokachi: And where are you (unintelligible) Bulgaria?
Yancy Butler: Well I'm coming back like the day after tomorrow. Let's
get together all next weekend.
Where are you Gary?
Gary Morgenstein: In New York. That's why I talk like this.
Yancy Butler: I love it. I love it. I'm from New York.
David Chokachi: Do you want to come meet Brit?
Yancy Butler: I would love to.
David Chokachi: Hewlett why don't...
Yancy Butler: That would be fabulous.
David Hewlett: You and Butler and I together and get some coffee and
I'll bring the little one by to say hello and we can meet your little
David Hewlett: Perfect. Let's do it.
Yancy Butler: I would love it.
David Chokachi: I would love to see you guys.
Yancy Butler: I would too. David you have my email - talk to - I have
both your emails. Please I will email you when I get back into town
which is like in three days.
David Chokachi: Awesome Yancy.
David Hewlett: We will orchestrate something from there. Fantastic. I
look forward to seeing both of you.
Yancy Butler: Please and let's make it happen.
Man: All right for sure.
Yancy Bulter: Let's really make it happen. I would love that.
Man: Öthis Saturday, this Saturday. Rage of the Yeti, we are tipping it
hard on the Twitter accounts.
Yancy Butler: That's right.
Man: I already got it out there.
Gary Morgenstein: David and David. Thank you everyone.
Man: Thank you Gary.
Yancy Butler: Thank you.
Gary Morgenstein: Happy holiday everyone.
Yancy Butler: You too.
Gary Morgenstein: Bye bye.
Yancy Butler: Bye Gary, bye David squared. I love you guys.
Man: Love you too. Bye Yanc, bye David.
Yancy Butler: Bye.
Man: See you brother, bye.
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