I interviewed Ben in summer of 2009 after the Farscape panel at Comic Con :
25 July, 2009
Me : When I first read interviews in 2000 I was impressed that you seemed proud of Farscape. It has been ten years has this sentiment changed or mellowed at all?
Ben : No. In some ways I am more impressed by Farscape as time goes on. The Show is still beautiful and unique (unique still being always valuable, to quote Scorpius). I can still see the warts, but nostalgia aside I am amazed that such a show as Farscape was ever made. No doubt I am biased. I still love Farscape.
Me : What stage character could you see yourself playing now that you wouldn’t have considered ten years ago?
Ben : One that’s 10 ten years older. When I was leaving drama school, on most resumes the actor would list their playing range… usually 18-30 years old or some such nonsense. So I guess I should be looking for a part that’s 35 to 50 years old? I’m not ready to play Leer yet, I never had designs on Hamlet, I’d have to pack on 50 pounds to play Falstaff… hmmm, maybe Iago, that’d be fun.
Me : Any news you can share on “Going Homer”?
Ben : It’s still moving in the right direction. Farscape took five years from pitch to production. Hopefully it won’t take that long, but the story keeps getting better and there has been no drop in enthusiasm for the project. I had a college professor would always said “things always take longer than they do.” I’m still not sure I understand what he meant, but if something is worth doing, sometime it takes longer than you would think to get there.
Me : What is your take on why shows like Farscape and Friday Night Lights which are critical successes and have strong fan bases struggle for airtime?
Ben : Fashion? Timing? Luck? Anyone who can answer that question could probably be the King of show business… providing their timing was right and they were exceptionally lucky and had really deep pockets. Honestly? TV and movies are an oddly human endeavor, as such they succeed artistically or financially according to the murky gyrations of human dynamics. Measures of success are all relative. We define the success of one show versus another by a number different and sometimes conflicting criteria. When and where a show can air can be entailed by contracts and commitments that an audience is unaware of, in other words legally, maybe NBC can’t air Friday Night Lights in another time, or the producers can’t take the show to CBS. If all this sounds like confusing drivel, I will merely quote Shakespeare in Love to say: “It’s a mystery!”
Me : Are you writing?
Ben : Yes.