CCI XTRA: Joel Silver Previews Vampire Drama "Moonlight"

Producer Joel Silver previewed "Moonlight" --premiering September 28 on CBS-in introducing the Comic-Con audience in San Diego to Mick St. John, a cool, confident, and smart-alecky vampire detective.

Silver was joined at the panelist table by series star Alex O'Loughlin, and by co-stars Sophia Myles, Jason Dohring, Shannyn Sossamon, and Brian White.

A teaser trailer kicked off the session with an interview of the Mick St. John character. The interview revealed some of the rules governing the vampires of "Moonlight's" world. Wooden stakes cannot kill "Moonlight's" vampires, but beheading or fire can. Vampires cannot fly, but have a high vertical leap, can "move real fast," and have super-human abilities like enhanced strength, hearing, and smell. Notably, sunlight makes these vampires uncomfortable, but it does not kill them.

The audience endorsed the trailer with cheers and applause.

As for Mick St. John, he was turned into a vampire by his wife on their wedding night, 58 years before the setting of the show. He and his wife have had a "falling out" since then. St. John sleeps in a freezer and gets his blood from a dealer. "Most vampires don't have boundaries with humans," but he lives by a code of "don't hunt women, children, or innocents." Much as a vampire friend of Joss Whedon's did, he uses his powers to "help others" and has the ability (and desire) to love.

Comparisons to previous television vampire heroes were addressed right away. The first topic in the question-and-answer session addressed similarities of "Moonlight" to "Forever Knight." In response, Silver said, "It's a very different route. The character of Mick is a very different character." He continued, "Joss [Whedon] does more conventional vampire fare. In this world, there are no demons."

O'Laughlin, also contrasting "Moonlight" against "Buffy" and "Angel," said, "It only deals with vampires in 2007, who walk among us." The show is "based on realism, not otherworldly creatures."

Continuing his endorsement of the show, O'Laughlin described it as "well-balanced" with "romance" and "action." He finished with, "The whole show is full of heart."

The front seats of the room were dominated by female fans of Jason Dohring, and they squealed, cheered, and laughed at his appearance on stage and during his introduction to his character. He was the youngest cast member present, but portrays a powerful and evil vampire hundreds of years old. When an audience member asked Silver what inspired him to cast Dohring, Silver said, "I love Logan [Dohring's character from 'Veronica Mars'] and wanted to keep Logan in my life."

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