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Con-Man

For any proud Browncoat Alan Tudyk needs no introduction. Most known for his portrayal of Hoban Washburne (“Wash”) on Firefly, Tudyk is also known for playing Steve, the Pirate in Dodgeball, as well as voice acting in Frozen, Big Hero 6, American Dad, Robot Chicken, Wreck-It Ralph, and others. His new project – a hilarious web series, Con Man, is currently in the making. Here’s the trailer

In an exclusive interview with the Legion of Leia, Tudyk shared how Con Man was first created. The idea first came to him shortly after Firefly was cancelled while he was at a “very poorly run convention.” Tudyk was sitting at a bar after having lost a gig he was hoping to get, and was feeling hopeless about ever getting work again. Another actor from a horror movie, who was also present at the convention, was running around yelling at people, “Guess who I am!” It was at that moment that Tudyk’s Con Man character of Wray Nerely was born from his fear of being known for one thing and never getting work again.

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The conversation about the show first happened in Nathan Fillion’s kitchen and then continued over a bunch of hikes that the pair went on. The initial idea was actually to make Con Man into a movie, which was different from the current web series. Tudyk did not wish to reveal the details about the movie idea because he hopes to still one day make the film (and I hope he does). Approximately 3 years ago his manager suggested that he turn the movie idea into a TV show and Tudyk agreed. Tudyk has certainly had plenty of data that he gathered over the years from different cons (the doll convention actually happened). He stated that at every convention “there are a lot of stories that begin to tell themselves.”

At one of the conventions there was a knock on his door early in the morning. When he opened the door, there was a girl there about 21 years old, dressed in what looked to be nightclothes and smelling strongly of booze. She walked right past him, mumbling drunkenly that her key doesn’t work and went to lie down on the couch. Tudyk was still confused at the door. Only after Tudyk specifically asked who she was, did the young woman realize her mistake. Tudyk alluded that silly stories like that, which occur at various cons make for great material for the web series.

Tudyk laughed heartily when asked if the bathroom scene from the trailer actually occurred in real life. He stated that he cannot wait for the audiences to see the rest of that scene as it’s actually “a part of something else that’s going on… That’s the episode where we get to meet the rest of the cast [from the original show].” In fact, many of the original Firefly cast members will be making appearances on Con Man, including Nathan Fillion, who will actually have a pretty large part in the series, as well as Summer Glau, Jewel Staite, Gina Torres, and others.

Tudyk expressed extreme gratitude to all his fans throughout the years and the many conventions he attended, especially Dragon Con, and his ability to travel internationally, including Australia and Dubai. He reported that at a recent con at Dallas there were over 9,000 people at his Q&A, stating that the previous week the Rolling Stones performed at the same stadium.

I actually first saw Alan Tudyk on Broadway playing the role of Sir Lancelot in Monty Python’s Spamalot. When asked if he has any plans to return to Broadway, Tudyk stated that he would really like to, as he is a “theatre geek” and that theatre acting allows him to “really sharpen [his] acting skills.”

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As a psychologist, I work with patients with PTSD, many of whom strongly relate to science fiction, such as Firefly. Tudyk stated that Firefly and other science fiction characters can be extremely relatable while also not very intimidating through story and humor. When asked about what Con Man can bring, Tudyk stated he is hoping that the show can bring humor to its audience, which can be extremely powerful for the viewers.

When asked what Tudyk would recommend to the viewers who are being bullied for their geeky interests, Tudyk stated, “there’s light at the end of the tunnel… Geeks have inherited the Earth, definitely in the Entertainment industry. Hollywood comes to San Diego every year to court the audience of geeks… They want that audience, [Geeks] are valued.” Tudyk stated that he was bullied as well as a child and that when he was bullied he made it a point to use humor as a defense. To the survivors of bullying, Tudyk stated, “Band together, believe in yourself, and remember that the bullies that are on top when you’re in school, most of the time their lives don’t always turn out as well. There isn’t that value, unlike the people that embrace their interests. Making friends has a value, helping others has a value…” What a powerful reminder to stay true to ourselves and embrace our inner geek J

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Con Man is slated to be released on Vimeo on September 30, 2015, we at the Legion of Leia hope that you will join us in watching the series.

 

Dr. Janina Scarlet is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist, a scientist, and a full time geek. She uses Superhero Therapy to help patients with anxiety, depression, chronic pain, and PTSD at the Center for Stress and Anxiety Management and Sharp Memorial Hospital. Dr. Scarlet also teaches at Alliant International University, San Diego. Her book, Superhero Therapy, is expected to be released in July 2016 with Little, Brown Book Group. If you would like to learn more about Superhero Therapy, please feel free to contact Dr. Janina Scarlet via Twitter @shadowquill, Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Shadow.Scarletl, or via her website at www.superhero-therapy.com

 

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Dr. Janina Scarlet

Dr. Janina Scarlet is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist, a scientist, and a full time geek. She uses Superhero Therapy to help patients with anxiety, depression, chronic pain, and PTSD at the Center for Stress and Anxiety Management and Sharp Memorial Hospital. Dr. Scarlet also teaches at Alliant International University, San Diego. Her book, Superhero Therapy, is expected to be released in 2016 with Little, Brown Book Group.If you would like to learn more about Superhero Therapy, please feel free to contact Dr. Janina Scarlet via Twitter@shadowquill, Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Shadow.Scarletl, or via her website at www.superhero-therapy.com

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