Back in March, a few cast members and some of the main crew of the new CBS summer mini-series Under the Dome paid a visit to WonderCon 2013 to talk about the much-anticipated adaptation of the Stephen King novel of the same name.
Included in the panel were cast members Rachelle LeFevre (the Twilight franchise) and Dean Norris (Breaking Bad) and Executive Producers Neal Baer and Jack Bender as well as Producer/Writer Brian K. Vaughan.
Given that the book is over 1000 pages long, the task to be handled by writer Brian was to take what took place in a few days within the pages of that tome, stretching it out into 13-episodes. In fact, author Stephen King “has been very generous” telling Brian to “use the book as a starting point” and with that directive, Brian “pulled the book apart pound by pound”.
Let’s take a quick look at what the series itself is about. Under the Dome will tell the story of the residents of the small town of Chester’s Mill, Maine, who suddenly find themselves cut off from the rest of the world by a mysterious, impenetrable barrier that surrounds the town. As the town begins to tear itself apart through panic, a small group of people attempt to maintain peace and order while also trying to uncover the truth behind the barrier and how to escape from it.
Now, with that explanation the conversation then moved over to the cast, speaking about how they, personally, would handle this kind of scary predicament. Rachelle shared that she asked herself a number of questions, including “Who would I really be?” “What would I do?” and “How would I handle things?” She continued that her role of Julia Shumway, an investigative reporter, is “the living embodiment of all those questions (and more)”.
Dean, on the other hand, joked that “one thing you need under a dome is a bad guy” and his character – James “Big Jim” Rennie, local politician and owner of the local used car lot, is just that bad guy who will “become a bit of a dictator”. That being said, though, Dean briefly talked about the transition from playing a good guy in Breaking Bad to being the bad guy in Under the Dome, sharing that he “doesn’t think (of Jim as being) bad, he just makes bad decisions”.
Brian, Neal and Jack then talked about how the summer episodes will be divided into “the 3 F’s”: Faith, Fascism and Fear; and it will definitely be interesting to see how those three F’s play out over the hottest months of the year. One this is for sure, the crew “knows how it will all end” but they also have “the freedom to change things as they go along”. But fans of the novel should know that the ending in the book will not be the ending in the series.
To find out for yourself about Under the Dome, make sure to tune into CBS on Monday, June 24 at 10 PM to see how this “environmental parable” will play out.