The Press Tours allow the major television networks, cable networks, online streaming services and the Public Broadcasting Service to present their slate of upcoming programs through panels and interviews.
On August 10 in 2016, the main cast plus Executive Producers Peter Lenkov and James Wan attended the TCA Summer Press Tour Event for CBS.
Before the panel, the main cast took part in a photoshoot for the so-called Summer Studio Portraits.
I have to say that I REALLY like them – more than the official portrait photos by CBS, actually. Each cast member did some portrait pictures plus additional photos alone or in pairs.
Despite the lack of sleep they must have had after a month of filming, they all look refreshed and happy. Also, the portraits don’t look overly photoshopped.
It looks like “Team Phoenix” did some color-coordination – mainly wearing blue, black and white – but it’s not that obvious that it feels staged. In fact, the clothes seem all very complimentary to everyone, so I’m not sure if they had a stylist’s help for that. (In fact, most other attendees have been wearing blue, grey, white and black as well.)
It’s unclear if they also did some group pictures – it would have been nice to see them all together. (Maybe we’ll get to see some outtakes one day because there must be many more pictures.)
Lucas Till, Tristin Mays and Sandrine Holt changed their attire before attending the party after the panel. The women changed into dresses, but stayed color-coordinated in black and white. Lucas chose a brown suit for his blue shirt.
It’s sad that the photos haven’t been used that much. I know that one of Lucas Till and one of Justin Hires were used for articles that appeared in CBS Watch! Magazine, and one of Lucas was used for the image series of “New Faces of Fall TV” by the Hollywood Reporter.
Because I’m not in the US and don’t have access to American Magazines, I can’t say for sure, though. And I dare to say it here because I thought about it many times since I started blogging about the MacGvyer Reboot: Lucas Till seriously lacks fan sites. (Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong.)
Maybe I’m just spoilt after being in the Twilight Fandom for more than five years. Because as a Twilight Fan, you were sure to find any printed article ever published anywhere in the world being scanned (in good quality), translated into English (if necessary) and made accessible on several fansites – usually on the same day an article was published.
Many Twilight-related fansites aren’t active anymore – but the ones that still are continue to update their galleries if new outtakes or pictures in better quality are available – sometimes even from photoshoots done years ago. I guess we’ll see if people looking for pictures related to the MacGyver Reboot have the same luxury one day.
If you’re interested, you can see a BtS video with Tristin Mays of the photoshoot here.
On September 15 in 2016, CBS had released the first promo pictures and stills for the Pilot Episode. Some of these pictures were used as character portrait pictures to introduce the characters of “Team MacGyver” (that would become “Team Phoenix” by the end of the episode).
As far as I know, the character portraits were mainly used on the official Facebook and Instagram pages.
The team members were marketed like this:
Angus MacGyver (Lucas Till) = The Brains
Jack Dalton (George Eads) = The Muscle
Riley Davis (Tristin Mays) = The Hacker
Patricia Thornton (Sandrine Holt) = The Boss
Wilt Bozer (Justin Hires) = The Best Friend
To put it mildly, the character portraits weren’t received very well by fans of the Original Show, especially by fans that hadn’t heard yet that there would be a team involved. The most vocal comments were about Jack Dalton being “The Muscle”.
Personally, I wasn’t very happy with Bozer being portrayed as “The Best Friend”, especially after the BtS video from set were Justin joked about playing the black guy flipping burgers on the show. (CBS was critized heavily after last year’s upfronts due to the fact that all main heroes for their new 2016 Fall Shows were white males. Justin being marketed like this just added a little more fuel to the fire.)
I liked those portraits, although Tristin’s was different (probably taken on set). On the CBS website, they later replaced her background with the same “studio grey” to match the other pictures.
As the main character, Lucas Till had some additional pictures that were mostly used by TV magazines and for articles online.
CBS later replaced Sandrine Holt’s portrait on their website with a new one by Meredith Eaton. It’s interesting to note that “The Boss” character portrait of Sandrine as Patricia Thornton has been removed from the Facebook Page (although Meredith never got her own). It’s still up on Instagram, though.
They had done more portraits of Lucas in the photoshoot that was done at the same time as the parachute scene for the Billboard Poster Art. (You can read more about this in my other blog post from earlier this week.)
It’s possible they decided not to officially release them because MacGyver is wearing a bomb vest while being tied to a chair. Many countries (at least in Europe) have strict rules about such pictures; meaning they might not have been able to use them for international promo anyway. In fact, European countries used their own poster art that goes along with the teaser clips. (I will cover this topic in another blog post soon.)
For their website, CBS still uses a header of only “Mac and Jack”; presenting them as the main leads and implying that the Reboot is mainly a two-man-show.
I’d love to see more high-quality pictures of these one day. Since George is wearing the same haircut again now that they started filming the new season, it’s actually possible they might be used for the Season 2 promo as well.
If you’ve read some of my Updates, you probably already know: I’m not a big fan of the Official Poster Promo.
I like the colors. The combination of the colors looks good at night, too. The BtS videos look like they had a lot of fun shooting it. I like that it features only a single character – the character the show was actually named for. It seems they had quite the decent advertizing budget. The poster art looks very modern, I guess. And it looked pretty great being painted onto Hotel Figueroa in LA.
But I just don’t like the poster itself.
For one, I think it’s a bit misleading.
The Reboot is clearly more “Team Phoenix” than “MacGyver”. Back when the writers (e.g. Brian Durkin) were still writing scripts and filming hadn’t started yet, there was a lots of talk about Jack Dalton and the Hashtag #MacAndJack was used frequently. Although both Lucas Till and George Eads did the promo tour shortly before the premiere in September, it was only Lucas who was featured in the poster art and the mini clips.
Additionally, they had stated at Comic Con San Diego that MacGyver would still be afraid of heights. Here, he looks like he jumps out of helicopters before breakfast every day.
Two, I don’t think the poster fits the character.
Back when the poster art was seen on billboards and on busses, many people uploaded photos of it on social media. Most reactions were negative. People who didn’t know the original show were kinda confused what this should be. They deemed it too cheesy and assumed it was promo for a B-Movie with lots of CGI explosions. Others made fun of it, stating it was a rip-off of other movie posters and game covers.
Many fans of the original show took offense by stating that Lucas Till’s version of MacGyver was too cocky and “smirky” and that the sujet itself was too “patriotic”. I have to agree that it wasn’t necessary to put an American flag on the parachute. This might be a controversial topic, depending where you readers are from.
I’m not American and to me, MacGyver has always been an international show. In some countries, the original show has been airing for years on free TV stations without any hiatus. I don’t remember a single episode where MacGyver put emphasis on his heritage (growing up in Minnesota, yes, but not being American per se).
Third, I think it’s overly photoshopped.
When the poster art was released in August 2016, I still didn’t know much about Lucas or his work. By now, I’ve seen many pictures of him and several of his movies, and I have to say he has a nice and natural smile. The poster diminishes that and makes him look a bit like a cocky jerk.
I’m aware that this might be exactly what the studio had in mind. Rebooted MacGyver is younger than OT MacGyver, and even in the original show, MacGyver stated that he was a bit cocky and sometimes too self-assured in his younger years.
I can’t even imagine what Lucas must have felt like; seeing your own face on huge billboards all around the city you live in. That’s quite an accomplishment if you’re still so young. But I just don’t know why they chose this one as the end result.
I actually like the screenshots of the BtS video and BtS pictures of the photoshoot much better.
Looking back, it feels a bit strange that they had all this promo with the “Parachute Scene”, yet cut the scene so short in the Pilot Episode. It’s probably the most interesting MacGyverism in the episode; especially for viewers that don’t know the original show.
Yes, time is essential for the scene. I guess it played out better in the Unaired Pilot, where MacGyver probably “sailed” for a much longer time once he escaped the burning truck that fell down a cliff.
Interestingly, there was a second billboard version out there in LA, but we never got to see it anywhere else in any other form.
Disclaimer: My original guest-post was first published on The MacGyver Project on February 3, 2017. I made some minor changes (e.g. grammar or source corrections, link corrections, additional pictures) before re-posting it on my own blog for safe-keeping.
Cast and Crew were freezing on set while filming the residual episodes for Season 1. Maybe that’s why they liked playing with fire so much last week?
(Spoiler Alert: You will get spoilered by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided!)
Where there’s filming, there’s homework
While the fans had to endure another premiere break of 3 weeks, cast and crew stayed busy filming more episodes and doing their homework.
Justin and Tristin post a lot of Instagram Live Stories videos at the moment, but every now and then we also get a non-temporary look at the cast in disguise (read: wearing coveralls and Bozer’s prosthetic noses).
On January 28, several outlets (e.g. Atlanta Filming) posted about the show “blowing up sh*”. It didn’t take long for Peter Lenkov to post a video of a blue van exploding. Pretty impressive! While Lenkov’s video is seen via camera screen, Instagram-User bryttani showed the explosion from a wider angle.
I’m not sure if all that “fire-play” for Episode 17 (Ruler) was as controlled as it was planned, though. Just the day before, Tristin Mays had posted a short video of Stunt Coordinator Jeff Wolfe instructing Lucas Till how to handle the self-made flame-thrower. It looks like Jeff burned himself (not to mention that Tristin had stamped a not so happy emoticon on it). Additionally, both Tristin and Justin Hires had posted videos that indicated production needing additional help from the fire departement. Interestingly, George Eads didn’t seem too much concerned about the seemingly out-of-control-fire; continuing to eat his sandwich.
Filming in “Amsterdam”
Judging by the clothes, the extras and the press release, Episode 17 might actually turn out to be a two-parter. We’ll see. Production continued filming in Marietta Square this week; featureing a stunt motorcycle, a truckload of bicycles and a set-redressing to stand in for Amsterdam. Many bypassers, extras and shops took the opportunity to post pictures; inadvertently also revealing some storylines (and possibly even spoilers; especially since some of these posts were deleted shortly after posting it).
Rerun of Episode 9
During the premiere break, there was a rerun of Episode 9 (Chisel) on Friday, January 27. The episode made some good ratings (5.17 million viewers).
CBS sure likes to keep the fans waiting. Although the preview for Episode 14 (Fish Scaler) had aired after last weeks rerun of Episode 9, the video wasn’t available on the official YT-Account until February 1st. Additionally, we had to wait until two days before the premiere to finally get stills and sneak peeks.
CBS Watch! Magazine and other Promo
On January 24, CBS Watch! Magazine released the interview and the photo gallery for the shoot they had done back in October in the midst of a heat wave. Lucas Till revealed that some of the gadgets can be really challenging, but that this is what makes so much fun while filming. George Eads stated that Lucas’ enthusiasm and passion about doing the show kinda “rebooted” him after spending so many years on the same set (for CSI: Las Vegas). They also revealed that they practically spend all day together because they’re roommates.
On the same day, Technical Consultant Rhett Allain shared another blog post – this time about Leyden Jars like the one used in Episode 13 (Large Blade).
The premieres in Namibia and New Zealand brought on another wave of promo pictures, interviews and articles. In an interview with stuff, George Eads declared rebooted Jack Dalton as “halfway nuts”. He revealed that due to the aggressive nature of his character, he’s already paying the price for avoiding using stunt doubles wherever possible: “It’s killing me, let me tell you. I’ve been head butted about four or five times, punched in the face, cut at least five or six times, I’ve had at least 40 or 50 bruises.”
Cast and Character News Central Casting Georgia had difficulties finding their pool shark and also took several tries to find European Bicycles. Additionally, they put out casting calls for Dutch Citizens and Students, an African-American Female in her 20ies and small cars. The most recent casting call is especially interesting, since they’re looking for Asian Extras (e.g. EMTs, nurses, doctors, paramedics, tactical and other military guys), in particular Hawaiian-looking Extras. We all remember Peter Lenkov talking about the possibility of doing a crossover with Hawaii Five-0 and that he still wants to do it. In fact, he had already laid the ground-work for it in the pilot episode, but the scene got cut.
Since the return of the Coltons was revealed, fans of the original show have been asking about Frog Dog. While no dogs have been spotted on set for Episode 16, Zoom Groom Zoom revealed they have been grooming an adorable looking dog (called “Chewy”) for filming scenes recently. I have to admit to being a bit shocked for a few seconds after Justin Hires posting a short video from set, referring to his co-star as “Deborah” and praising her for “killing” her scenes. Good to know that “Deborah” is the actresses name, not the name of her character (Deborah + Upscale Set + adorable little dog + killing it… Fans of the original show will know what whacky conclusion I had made in that instant!)
A look onto the IMDb cast-list reveals: Penny Parker (Bianca Malinowski) will be back in Episode 1×18! Hopefully, she will play a bigger part this time. If you throw characters of the original show into the reboot, you might as well start using them!
Disclaimer: My original guest-post was first published on The MacGyver Project on January 20, 2017. I made some minor changes (e.g. grammar or source corrections, link corrections, additional pictures) before re-posting it on my own blog for safe-keeping.
Although the next Episode won’t air until February 3, Cast and Crew are busy filming the residual episodes for Season 1. Also, there’s a certain Family of Bounty Hunters on set!
(Spoiler Alert: You will get spoilered by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided!)
Working on Episodes 14, 15 and 16
After a premiere break of 3 weeks, cast and crew took their time to join in the promo of Episodes 12 (Screwdriver) and 13 (Large Blade). On January 6, Justin Hires posted some interesting pictures of Bozer and Riley in undercover costumes while Tristin Mays shared a rather disturbing video of herself walking around the set. Seems like she got herself a new face for the day!
Despite the high ratings of Episode 12 on January 6, Executive Producer Peter Lenkov didn’t have much time to celebrate. He spent the weekend editing and sharing teasers on Instagram Stories. One of these teasers was a short video of MacGyver being handcuffed in an out-of-control car going backwards. Looks like an exciting Opening Gambit! The other videos consisted of a fight in a parking garage and of MacGyver mentally gearing up to work with his new boss.
Bounty Hunters on Set
On Monday, production moved to “Louisiana” (aka Dolly’s Farmhouse Restaurant in Austell, Georgia) to start shooting for another episode. Several bypassers got a look at the filming process in front of the restaurant. Dolly’s also shared some pictures on Facebook; stating that well over hundred people were swarming the location.
Episode 16 might be a special one for fans of the original show, because a well-known family of Bounty Hunters is back in town! Jermaine Rivers revealed on January 16 that he has been cast as Frank Colton. After asking if he might be one of the Colton’s, Lance Gross confirmed to me on Twitter that he has been cast as Billy Colton. It didn’t take long for Mama Colton (Sheryl Lee Ralph) and Jesse Colton (Javicia Leslie) to reveal themselves.
Premieres of Episodes 12 and 13
During the premiere of Episode 12 (Screwdriver) on January 6, Extras and cast members shared some more BtS pictures of the filming process back in November. Briana Lamb had been able to stand in (or sit in) for Amy Acker (she was usually Sandrine Holt’s Stand-In) – which meant she got to wear a wedding dress and the crew to “play-fight” about who would be walking her down the aisle for practice. Preston Hillier posted a picture of the happy couple.
The premiere of Episode 12 not only brought recurring characters and surprising plot-twists, but also the third-highest ratings (8.42 millions) so far. The ratings for Episode 13 (Large Blade) weren’t as high (7.64 millions), but these two episodes are also the best user rated episodes on IMDb. Also, the Hashtag #MacGyver keeps trending on Twitter, even long after the show has aired.
Andrew Karlsruher, writer of Episode 13, tweeted along with the other MacGyver Writers; sharing some of the science behind this episode, but also a warning not to try THIS at home.
Overall, the ratings and the 18-49 demographic numbers are relatively solid (for now, the mean is 8.1 millions viewers / 1.14 per episode). If the numbers stay that way, chances are good for the show being renewed for another season.
Stills, Sneak Peeks and Press Releases
Only 3 days before its premiere, we got the first stills for Episode 13 (Large Blade). Just hours before the premiere, we got two additional sneak peeks.
Production Assistant Kait C. shared the information that Episode 15 will be directed by Stephen Herek again (who had directed Episode 11 and the unaired “Young MacGyver” pilot back in 2003) while SpoilerTV revealed the title for Episode 17 (Ruler).
On January 19, CBS Express delivered the press release for Episode 14 (Fish Scaler). It will air on February 3 and was directed by Eagle Egilsson (CSI: Miami). I still don’t know why they felt the need to rush production so they can premiere the show in September – only to take so many breaks in between anyway. I think it’s quite annoying to wait so long; especially after a new regular cast member has joined the team.
SAK Huntsman ad and other Promo Blue Barn Creative recently had the opportunity to create a promo for CBS and Victorinox for the Huntsman Boy Scout Swiss Army Knife. They used the tagline “Always Be Prepared” and footage from the Pilot Episode.
On January 13 – right before the premiere of Episode 13 – ET Online aired a promo video including a greeting from new regular cast member Meredith Eaton.
The video granted another glimpse at the Photoshoot for CBS Watch! Magazine. The Magazine will feature Lucas Till (Dresscode: Suit and Parachute) on the cover and will be available on January 23. Understandably, Lucas is very grateful to be on a major magazine cover for the first time. Justin Hires also gets a full photo-page in this issue.
Cast, Crew and Character News
As noted above, the Coltons are coming back! Jermaine Rivers had revealed that his role as Frank Colton is a recurring one; so we should be prepared to see them again. You might have noticed that Jesse Colton is played by Javicia Leslie, which means Jesse is a girl in the Reboot. So far, we haven’t seen a dog on set, though. I really hope they bring back Frog, too!
Central Casting Georgia is still looking for a professional pool shark. Other casting calls were made for Armenian men to portray bad guys, for upscale Dutch citizens and for adults with Beachcomber Bicycles (whatever that is).
On January 11, Meredith Eaton (NCIS, Boston Legal) had announced that she’s joining the show. Two days later, it was confirmed that she will be the new head of the Phoenix Foundation.
Many fans were unhappy or even outraged about Sandrine Holt leaving the show and how her storyline was handled. How can the reinvented character of Pete Thornton be declared as a baddie without further explanation? It is worth to note that new boss “Matty Webber” is a clear notion to the original episode “Early Retirement” (Episode 3×12) and that Peter Lenkov has planned to bring Sandrine back soon. Do I smell a Season Finale Plot Twist coming? I sure hope so.
Disclaimer: My original guest-post was first published on The MacGyver Project on November 11, 2016. I made some minor changes (e.g. grammar or source corrections, link corrections, additional pictures) before re-posting it on my own blog for safe-keeping.
Cast and crew are busy working on more episodes until they get to enjoy a break over Christmas. Also, our favorite villain will come back in today’s episode!
(Spoiler Alert: To avoid spoilers, I won’t post any pictures that are too revealing, but you will get spoilered by reading this post or by clicking on the links provided!)
We also got a throwback to Episode 2 (Metal Saw): SkyDroneCinema just posted a video today of Jack and MacGyver chasing “Julio”.
It looks like they’re filming a Christmas Episode at the moment. First, Executive Producer Peter Lenkov posted paperclip art snow flakes on November 8. The next day, he shared a picture of Christmas Stockings. Looks like Jack has been a naughty boy!
Lucas Till was also seen on set wearing a pretty warm coat. So far no skis, (fake) snow or hockey sticks, though. I tend to forget that MacGyver is not filming in Vancouver anymore. (It’s also Original MacGyver’s fault that I used to think it snows regularly in California *ahem*.)
Stand-In Mikey Leo granted us a look at the “second team” while Extra Aimee Carrero assures us she’s acting “totally normally” in her scene.
Brian Durkin (who wrote Episode 6) shared visualizations and early drawings of an old school bomb defusal technique called “tape and line”. According to his statements on Twitter, he had many conversations with real bomb defusal technicians while doing research for the script.
Premieres of Episodes 6 and 7
I assumed ratings would rise some more for the Halloween Episode, but I’m not up to date with sport events (especially not sporty events abroad) and didn’t take into account that the world series would have an effect. So, it’s no surprise that ratings for Episode 6 (Wrench, 7.27 million) have been lower than expected (which is a shame because I actually think this episode was the best so far). Nonetheless: The Hashtag #MacGyver has been trending again – as it has for every episode premiere this season.
Episode 7 (Can Opener, 7.59 million) got better ratings and the numbers might rise again for Episode 8: I assume that many people will tune in for the return of Murdoc – maybe even people that have abandoned the show after the pilot or the first few episodes.
Entertainment Weeklybrought an exclusive clip of Episode 8, where Bozer meets Murdoc. It fits the short video clip that Peter Lenkov posted a few days earlier with Team MacGyver all dressed up for a mission in an Art Gallery.
Interviews and Articles CBS Watch! Magazine revealed on October 28 that there will be a feature article including a photoshoot with Lucas Till and George Eads in January.
On November 2, Peter Lenkov shared an article by TVGuidefor Episode 7. TVLine did an interview with David Dastmalchian about his take on Murdoc.
TVInsider spoke with Lucas Till and George Eads. Lucas revealed that he hasn’t reached out to Richard Dean Anderson yet and that he’s a little afraid of what RDA would have to say about the show and his take on the iconic character.
The NY Post did interviews with Lucas and Peter Lenkov. Lenkov revealed that the show will see “a major change” early next year at the Phoenix Foundation: “Fans will probably figure it out because a lot of Easter eggs have been planted.”
Cast, Crew and Character News Central Casting Georgia has made several casting calls; e.g. for middle school students, for motorized scooters or for Asian men and women with military and gun training experience.
It seems like Arnold Hernandez met the guy who is responsible for the paper clip art. Hernandez put Lee Folds to the test and got a paperclip guitar in return. That’s pretty awesome and I really hope we will get some BtS-material or an article about these little props some day.
We already know that both Murdoc and Nikki (Tracy Spiridakos) will show up on Episode 8. On November 4, Justin Hires confirmed our suspicions that he will join Team MacGyver. According to a tweet by Vinnie Jones, he also might come back to “kick some asses”. Looks like someone still holds a grudge.