I can honestly admit that Rob Thomas is hands down one of the best directors/show producers in town. He truly CARES for his fans by emailing fans with show "updates"! (Hint: Amy Sherman-Palladino, pay attention!)
I was, at first, considering posting Rob's whole email but I've already given you guys the lowdown on Joss Whedon and Kevin Smith's love for the show. So instead, I will just post insight that is not privy to the public. Have fun reading!
About Joss Whedon...
And then – you heard it here first – Joss has agreed to guest star on the show. We’re firming up plans to have him play a testy, rental car manager in episode six.
At what point in Season 1 did the writing staff decide to put Logan and Veronica together?
We were probably a third of the way into the season, when we started moving in this direction. We just loved the two of them on screen together. Honestly, the death of Lynn Echolls was motivated by our desire to find a way that we could get Veronica and Logan together long enough and to get Logan vulnerable enough, that we could imagine a romance coming out of it. Lisa Rinna knew when she was hired that she would have a short lifespan on the show.
Did we ever seriously consider having Duncan/Veronica be related?
Yes, but not when it became a UPN show. The original pilot script was a degree darker, pushing it further into Twin Peaks territory, and I thought that if I sold the show, it would be to a cable network like HBO, Showtime or FX. Had it been on those networks, I would’ve entertained that notion further.
How do I feel about spoilers?
Good question. There are certainly people on our team and at the studio and network who get angrier with them than I do. I know that if the answer to the “who killed Lilly Kane” storyline had been all over the internet, I would’ve been upset. When the spoilers are put in a clearly defined link that allows users to avoid seeing them, they don’t bother me that much. I can’t say I understand the people who are spoiler junkies, however. I’m a huge fan of certain shows, and the last thing I would want would be to know what’s going to happen next.
That said, we are working a little harder at spreading disinformation this year. I believe a lot of our spoilers come out of our audition scenes. This year, we’re creating fake audition scenes that don’t really exist in the show or we’re changing names around, so that the wrong information will filter into the spoilers. It’s a mystery show. I still want to be able to surprise people.
Someone who worked as an extra last year – who has since been fired – started posting behind-the-scenes info and details from scenes last year. This year, if I feel like people are getting too much correct information, I will consider having the VM interns start logging into the various sites in order to dilute the actual info with fake info.
I suppose another thing that bothers me, a bit, is that spoilers only give the plot. It doesn’t deliver the execution. I will read people up in arms about something that they haven’t seen on the show yet. Maybe these posters will still hate it, but I’d like to get a fair shake at pulling it off. Sometimes I think the spoilers poison the well, and people decide they hate a plot point without giving us a chance to make it work.
This kind of segues into another topic…
I’ve received dozens of e-mails about how our “love triangle” is going to destroy the show and turn VM into soap opera crap. Perhaps. Or, maybe we’ll pull it off in interesting ways that make it delicious. All the phrase “love triangle” indicates to me is that we’ve got three people who have/had romantic interest in each other. Two of them are best friends. It’s bound to have complications.
Am I willing to put the shooting scripts on my website?
I’ll try to look into this, though I don’t think Warner Brothers, who, technically, owns the material, will go for it. They might want to publish the scripts some day -- like they did with Freaks & Geeks – and they won’t want people to be able to pull them down for free. Also, I wouldn’t feel comfortable posting writers’ scripts other than my own.
Is there a soundtrack coming out? If so, when?
Yep. There is a soundtrack coming out the last week of September. The soundtrack will include two of the most highly-sought, difficult-to-find music queues from Season 1. “Momentary Thing” by Something Happens, which played over Logan and Veronica’s first kiss. And, “Lily Dreams On” by Cotton Mather which played over Veronica’s dream of Lilly in the swimming pool.
Will you please Podcast a commentary track from Season 1.
I think I’ve received in the neighborhood of 20 e-mails telling me that the EP of Battlestar Gallactica did this suggesting that I do the same. I’m going to try. I imagine that I would do a commentary track for the pilot and post it here on this site. I am so, so busy right now that I’m unsure when I’d get to it, but I’ll make it a goal to have this posted before the DVDs come out.
One hesitation? Like most people in America, I’m not a big fan of my own voice.
Are you really seeking submissions from unsigned bands?
Yes. E-mail MP3s to me at email@example.com. Also send along band contact information. Please don’t send me links to bands’ websites. Send two or three songs. Don’t send me an album’s worth. I’ve already received around 40 songs, and there are a few that I feel confident that I’ll use in the show. We’ll pay the band $1000 if we use their song in the show. I’m promising to use at least five of these songs this year.
How did we end up on CBS?
Viacom owns both UPN and CBS. All thanks go to Joel Silver for convincing Les Moonves to air VM on the bigger network. Actually, thanks also to Les Moonves for agreeing to do it.
What is the title song?
The main titles song is The Dandy Warhols, “We Used to Be Friends” from their album, Welcome to the Monkey House.
Tiny, mini-spoiler alert… Don’t read the next sentence if you want to be completely virginal going into season 2.
Dandy Warhols lead singer Courtney Taylor Taylor will be singing karaoke in episode #3.
What day is our season premiere?
We saw the proposed cover art for the DVD at Comicon, and we hate it. What’s up with that?
Relax. I listened to the outpouring. We switched DVD and Soundtrack covers to the shot of Veronica and the boys at the pier from the “Get A Clue” campaign.
How can I become a Veronica Mars intern?
First – live in L.A. Then fax our offices with a letter and/or resume to the attention of Alex Mercer. Our office fax is 818-754-8848. We tend to hire people who are in some sort of college program who actually get credit for this. Be advised that it is a job that entails answering phones, running to Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, washing dishes and changing out paper towels in the rest rooms. Still interested? I would really only recommend it to people who would get some kind of credit for it.
... If ANY of my readers ever gets to do it, send me a photo! I will definitely post it here and I will be your BFF!
I know I’m not your intended demographic, but…
Every third e-mail I receive includes some version of this phrase. Honestly, I just turned 40. I’m trying to write a show that I would watch. The writers don’t sit around the offices trying to think of what teenagers would be interested in. We try to find some universal themes that teenagers are experiencing but the rest of us have experienced. By not pandering to teenagers, the hope is that teen viewers feel respected and older viewers feel welcome. There’s just a ton of teen-based stuff I respect too much to feel goofy or guilty about liking. Say Anything. Freaks & Geeks. Buffy. Heathers. My So Called Life, etc.
Will the DVDs include the original music?
I’m happy to report that they will.
What grades are the characters in…?
This year, all of our series regulars are seniors, except for Beaver who is a junior. (Lilly Kane was a year older than Duncan. They are not twins.)
Why did Logan have Dick and Beaver lie for him if he didn’t kill Lilly?
Logan knew how it would make him look. The jilted boyfriend drives back in the middle of the night to confront his ex. She’s murdered on that day. Logan would’ve had a hard time convincing anyone he was innocent.
When will the cast be making an appearance in my town?
Again, sorry. I don’t know. My head is so cluttered already that if I tried to keep track of all the marketing, promotions, press and appearances, it would simply explode. I do know that when our cast does hit a town, the network and studio P.R. machines do a terrific job of promoting it.
Can you tell us all of the character’s birthdays?
No. But I’ll tell you Veronica’s is in August.
Can you tell me how to break into writing for television?
Yes. Live in L.A. Attempt to get any kind of job you can get on a TV show as an intern, a P.A., an assistant. Write spec scripts for the type of show you want to write for. If you want to write a hard-core procedural cop show, write a CSI or a Law & Order. If you want to write for a character-based drama, write a Deadwood or a Desperate Housewives. Keep showing these to people up the food chain until someone recommends you to an agent. Write new specs every year.
Will you ever update Veronica’s online diary on the UPN website?
This was a job of an employee who is no longer with us. UPN really runs the website. The writers do provide occasional content – I usually assign the website stuff to the junior writers. They do run it by me, but when push comes to shove, the scripts for the show take precedence, and the website has tended to get the short end of the stick.
Would you recommend writing a spec script of Veronica Mars?
No. I hope next year I’ll be able to give a different answer, but right now there aren’t enough showrunners familiar with the show to make it a worthwhile exercise. Buffy specs, however, did become pretty standard in year three of that show.
While I’d be very curious to read a VM spec, I would probably shy away from it. There’s always the possibility that someone sends in a spec with a very similar plot line to something we’re working on, and if I’ve read that spec, it could appear as though I’m plagiarizing. That’s why it’s better to not even look at the spec.
... AGAIN: Take a hint, ASP! There's a very willing K, Ames and me willing to fill this slot... For free... Goods to be exchanged is a by-line, a better, more solid plot, the return of Tristin and a double wedding between Tanc and K, Ames and Matt... Okay, so it's a fantasy. We'll settle for a photo shot with the cast. Is that so hard and expensive? We'll pay our way...
Will you release a collector’s DVD later?
No plans are in the works, and, unfortunately, this is not my call. Warner Home Video will look at the sales of the first DVD release and base any future decisions on those figures.
Will we see Amanda Seyfried in year 2.
There are no plans, though we love Amanda, and if there’s a story line in which either a flashback of Lilly or a dream sequence of Lilly would be appropriate, we would probably ask her to do it. I’ll admit there’s a large part of me that so loved her final scene in Season 1 that anything new we do might take away from that last image.