Looking Back at Season 1 (XI) – The Opening Title Sequence

I’ve been planning to write this post for ages, but somehow I kept procrastinating this specific topic. Maybe because I’ve written already so much about it way back when in the MacGyver Online Forums?

Alas, I’ll give it another try.

Back in February 2016, when news outlets like Deadline announced CBS had ordered a pilot for a MacGyver Reboot, the social media buzz was intense. The questions most often asked were probably these: Who will be the new MacGyver? What will he look like? What will his hair look like? Will he still have his SAK?

Besides MacGyver’s hair (about which I’ve also written a blog post recently), the Opening Title Sequence has always been something “holy” that isn’t to be touched upon; especially the Opening Title Theme.

Even people who have never watched a single episode of Original MacGyver recognize the theme. Together with the Opening Title sequences, TV shows can form a memory in people’s minds that they will always associate with that specific show, even if they don’t watch it regularly. Think about Baywatch. It’s basically just people in red swim suits running along the beach and smiling at the camera. Not that exciting, isn’t it? You get used to it after seeing it for more than one season. But still – think about what would have happened if they had changed the music or the opening sequence too much…

So it wasn’t a surprise that after the first hubbubb about Lucas Till’s casting as the main hero had ebbed down, the next questions being discussed were: Will they keep the iconic title music of the Original Show? What will the Opening Credits look like?

Back in April 2016, I wrote following statement in one of the MacGyver Online threads: I wouldn’t mind the old theme back or a variation of it. But I don’t think this will happen; I think they will go with something new… 

I’ve changed my mind a few days later; especially after comparing the original and the rebooted version of the Opening Title Sequence for Hawaii Five-0, Executive Producer Peter Lenkov’s other show.

 

I was convinced the opening theme would be a recognizable reincarnation of the original – in the same way it’s been done for Remakes and Reboots in the past.

Of course, there was the risk of not having an opening sequence at all – because most modern TV shows don’t. The newer CBS shows (e.g. Limitless, Pure Genius, Code Black, Bull) don’t have one, either. But we all agreed that they surely wouldn’t dare to do this with a Reboot of a TV show like MacGyver that had such an iconic Opening Title Theme.

I didn’t think about the scenes themselves that much, to be honest. I just assumed it would be the actors in some action scenes. Probably not MacGyver eating ice cream like in the original, but maybe jumping over things and running from the bad guys, surely? The Original Opening Title Sequence is over a minute long, although there’s only two actors being credited (Richard Dean Anderson and Dana Elcar). So the rebooted sequence would have to be as long as the original one if they had to fit at least 5 people in there?

On September 13, the official MacGyver Reboot Facebook Account by CBS uploaded a video of the Pilot Episode set where the Opening Theme was playing. I liked the music, but it was not really what I had expected.

 

 

For one, it was too short – just about 40 seconds. Second, the part with the Original Theme wasn’t that recognizable. Not at all like the rebooted version of H50 which sounds just like the original version.

Five days later, Peter Lenkov uploaded a video of the orchestra recording it onto Instagram. I was very happy it was still played by a real orchestra and I thought it sounded great, just… not what I had hoped for. It didn’t affect me in the same way as the original theme, but I was ready to accept it.

It’s difficult to judge a theme without the Opening Title Sequence that goes with it. It sounded more dramatic than the original version, as well; so I was curious if the tone for the show had changed. Also, I was happy that it didn’t sound like the promo videos they had made for the premiere of the pilot, because those had featured mainly Hip Hop.

On September 20, Yahoo! TV uploaded a “fanmade” version of the rebooted Title Sequence. It features scenes from the first two episodes plus from the Unaired Pilot Trailer while recreating the Original Main Titles and using the Original Theme. Because people had tweeted about it without sourcing it correctly, many fans (and News Outlets) had assumed it was the real one.

I have to say it’s a well-made version of an Opening Title Sequence for the Reboot – probably one of the best I’ve seen so far!

Fanmade Opening Title Sequence (via Yahoo! TV)

Only a few hours later, Entertainment Weekly finally released the new Title Sequence. This time, it was the real deal. The reactions were – varied. Some loved it, some hated it, some were disappointed.

I don’t remember exactly anymore how I felt about it back then, but I remember that I would have preferred the one by Yahoo! TV. On the other hand, I don’t think you necessarily have to see the characters’ faces in the Opening Title Sequence.

I actually liked that you see MacGyver doing MacGyverisms (even though these are not Lucas Till’s hands which is a missed opportunity). It gives an inkling to new viewers what MacGyver is about.

I’m not sure if the MacGyverisms could have been appointed to the characters in a better way – like cutting up the bullet in the Screenshot below would maybe make more sense if it was George Eads’ name appearing with it (since he’s the gun-wielding sidekick).

The Opening Title Sequence Shots were done by Picturemill. Sadly, they never shared more than one single collage of BtS shots on Facebook. I hope we get to see some kind of Making-Of one day.

They could have gone the “easy” way and just edit scenes from the Pilot Episode together – but they did something new for it, so I think it could have been promoted as some kind of “Extra” that could have been posted onto YouTube and other social media accounts by CBS.

They also solved the problem of changes in the main cast beforehand – they didn’t need to cut anything new together. They just had to exchange Sandrine Holt’s name – for one or two episodes, the slot stayed “empty” before it was replaced with Meredith Eaton.

Overall, I think they chose some good everyday objects – a battery, a paperclip, a lightbulb and so on. I like the colors as well. The texts appearing are also interesting – although they dropped the descriptions after the first five or six episodes (which I think was a necessary step), it works actually pretty well in the Opening Title Sequence.

Also, they made adjustements for other countries; e.g. in Germany (see below) or France they appear in German or French (while e.g. Italy kept the English descriptions).

One puzzling thing that I’m still wondering about: The “logo” is different. It fits better with the Original Show, but they use a different one for the official social media accounts and on Official Stills.

 

German Opening Title Screenshot

On Premiere Day (September 23rd), SlashFilm released an interview with Peter Lenkov and James Wan. The interview – done at the TCAs back on August 11 – also featured questions about the Theme Song:

Are you able to use the theme song in an age where they’ve cut theme songs out of shows entirely?
Lenkov: One of the big things in television these days is there’s no main title sequence anymore. One of the things that I was really adamant about doing the show, and they signed off on it, was doing a main title sequence and actually having a theme song. Incorporate some of the original theme from the original show and a little bit of a new theme. So it’s a combination of the two but I didn’t want to do the show without a main title sequence. I feel like this show needs that. Very much like that original show.

On Hawaii Five-0 you got the theme song down to 30 seconds. Similar thing for MacGyver?
Lenkov: I think right now it’s 21 seconds. It keeps getting shorter every time we do a redo, but I’ll tell you one thing. That’s a big battle to win, to be able to do a main title sequence and a theme song these days. That’s not something network television does anymore.
Wan: Because it eats up ad space?
Lenkov: Yeah and they feel like maybe it’s a little retro but I like that.
Wan: It sets the tone.

That sure sounds like we should be happy we got a Theme Song and an Opening Title Sequence at all, huh?

So… what’s coming for Season 2? I’ve been wondering today if they might change the Opening Title Sequence, but I doubt they will.

It’s not like CBS will grant us more time for the Opening Title if Peter Lenkov already had to fight to even have one. There will be more recurring characters next season, but there’s enough space left to fit in more actors’ names.

So far, it’s 33 days left until the premiere of Season 2 but there’s no indication that Picturemill or Composer Keith Power are working on something new. On the other hand, there’s been no promo so far.

We will know soon enough.

BtS of the Opening Title Sequence (via Picturemill)
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MacGyver Reboot Update #25

Disclaimer: My original guest-post was first published on The MacGyver Project on March 17, 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.

Production of Season 1 has partially wrapped. There are 3 more episodes left for us to watch. We don’t know much what’s going to happen in these, so expectations are high.

BtS of Episode 1×18: Flashlight (via Simon Rhee)

(Spoiler Alert: You will get spoilered by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided!)

 

It’s a wrap. I think?
Justin Hires has wrapped and will be hosting a “Wrap Party Comedy Show” tomorrow. Tristin Mays also seems to have finished her part while some of the actors were still filming the Season Finale today. Although there is a new casting call for a photo double for next week, Executive Producer Peter Lenkov just posted an instagram picture with the announcement of the end of Season 1.

Of course, the post-production work is not done yet. But since the next episode won’t air until March 31, Lenkov has a bit more time than usual to edit the remaining episodes.

End of Season 1 (via Peter Lenkov)

Working on the Season Finale
There was a lot of promo going on for the Crossover Episode with Hawaii Five-0. Otherwise, it’s been quiet again. Cast and crew have been working on the last two episodes of the season and started filming the season finale last week. The few times they found a minute or two to post on social media, it was mainly Instagram Live Stories (which disappear after 24 hours) or pictures that didn’t reveal very much (e.g. of the barbecue grill at MacGyver’s home).

One thing for sure: There will be a lot of fire power, action scenes (e.g. a car chasing scene) and blood. We’ve seen several pics of Matty pointing a gun. There is also a tac team and military guys. Lucas Till posted a picture of Lee David Zlotoff visiting the set and posing with the cast. The picture reveals that Bozer will probably get hurt (and Riley might get bloody in the process). Tristin Mays showed us the proper way to put fake blood on your chest (hint: you use a straw).

Lee Zlotoff visiting the set (via Lucas Till)

Also, Bozer’s robot will make a comeback. It cuddled with Stunt Coordinator Jeff Wolfe and took a ride in Jack Dalton’s car (as seen on Robert Ratner’s Instagram Live Story). I’m assuming Jack won’t like that very much.

Premiere of the Crossover Episode
The last episode (Ruler) had earned the lowest ratings of the entire season so far (6.93 million viewers). The crossover episode (Flashlight) did better (7.73 million viewers), but lost a bit in the 18-49 demo group (1.0 instead of Ruler‘s 1.1). Overall, the ratings were good – but not as good as the promo cycle promised. Nevertheless, the Hashtag #MacGyver trended very fast on Twitter and continued to trend hours after the episode had aired. It also trended again on the weekend and on Monday in other countries (e.g. New Zealand).

The cast had joined the crossover promotion; sharing the stills, trailers, clips and articles or posting an “expensive selfie” (via Lucas Till) or a picture of Meredith Eaton with Taylor Wily. Peter Lenkov went live on Facebook to answer fan questions. The writers of Hawaii Five-0 tweeted along with the MacGyver writers.

BtS of Episode 1×18: Flashlight (via MSN)

During and after the premiere, the extras shared some more BtS pictures. Simon Rhee provided a picture of the main cast with their stunt doubles. Nik Kash (who played the scientist hanging onto a window ledge until he got rescued by Jack Dalton) posted a BtS picture of that scene and one of him posing with George Eads. Rome Flynn (Bozer’s rival) posted a BtS picture of him with Tristin Mays. We also got an adorable picture of dog Mila posing on the crossover set at the beach.

Stills, Sneak Peeks and Crossover Interviews
A day before the crossover premiere, we got some exclusive pics by MSN. After 3 episodes without any trailer previews, we got a lot of material for the crossover; e.g. ET Canada asking Lucas Till and George Eads which Hawaii Five-0 star would be the best at macgyvering himself out of a situation (apparently Daniel Dae Kim). We also got to see an exclusive trailer by Entertainment Weekly, a sneak peek by Yahoo, an exclusive clip by Mashable, a sneak peek by TV Guide and another one by Entertainment Weekly. ET Online additionally aired a short BtS sequence just before the premiere.

BtS of Episode 1×18: Flashlight (via Lucas Till)

In an interview with TVLine, Peter Lenkov talked about the connection between Jack Dalton and Steve McGarrett and that he would love to do more crossovers. He talked about the difficulties of doing a crossover with ET Online (it’s the logistics) and why – to the disappointment of many Hawaii-Five-0-Fans – only a part of the H50-Team made it into the episode.

Lenkov also wrote an article for the Hollywood Reporter; explaining why TV loves a good crossover and about what crossovers he personally deems the best.

Cast and Character News
Central Casting Georgia has been looking for a lot of Extras the last few weeks; e.g. for Baseball Fans, Techs and Agents (young, attractive and smart-looking), men with real military or tactical experience, English Mercenaries and for Arab looking men to portray Egyptians (Cairo, anyone?). They put up a new casting call today for a photo double of a caucasian woman with light brown hair.

Episode 1×21: Cigar Cutter (via Randall Goltzman)

What’s going to happen now?
We don’t know much about the remaining episodes. We finally got the title for Episode 19 (Compass) and its airdate (March 31). There are no press releases or stills so far. They have been filming on a baseball field (probably for Episode 20: Hole Puncher) and inside the same building that was used for Episode 17 (Ruler) as the CIA headquarters in Amsterdam.

There will be more promo before the Season Finale since CBS46 was on set and did interviews with the cast.

We still don’t know yet if there will be another season, but most sites are still predicting a season renewal (e.g. Movie Pilot, SpoilerTV or TV Grim Reaper).

MacGyver Reboot Update #24

Disclaimer: My original guest-post was first published on The MacGyver Project on March 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.

Only four Episodes left on Season 1. Are you sad about the impending Finale? Don’t be, because a great villain of the original show will make an appearance!

Episode 1×18: Flashlight (via SpoilerTV)

(Spoiler Alert: You will get spoilered by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided!)

 

Gearing up for the Finale
Yesterday evening I’ve written following part as my introduction for this update:

It’s been oddly quiet on social media recently. It might just be the calm before the next cycle of promo (for the crossover episode with Hawaii Five-0) hits us like an earthquake.

(See what I did there? Haha.)

Well, it’s already started. Just a few hours ago, Entertainment Weekly released the first promo trailer for Episode 18 (Flashlight).

Otherwise, it IS more quiet than usual; probably because Cast and Crew are busy with scouting, filming and editing while Executive Producer Peter Lenkov is preparing to produce another TV show this Summer (does this man ever sleep?).

Production should wrap up around mid-March. Justin Hires already sent out his invitation for a MacGyver Wrap Party Comedy Show on March 18.

For the last four episodes, there seem to be good things (and characters) waiting on the horizon. Lenkov himself revealed some interesting tidbits; e.g. that the Finale will explain some more about Cairo. On another (and kinda disappointing) note, we’ll get an episode less than expected because Episode 21 (Cigar Cutter) will be the Season Finale. Fans of the original show can rejoyce, though because none other than Dr. Zito will show up! I’m really curious who they’ve cast for this role.

BtS of Episode 1×19: Compass (via Shannon Thomas)

Working on Episodes 18, 19 and 20
We haven’t seen many pictures of the filming process of Episodes 19 (title still unknown) and 20 (Hole Puncher), despite production filming outside several times (e.g. at Grant Park, at Morehouse College posing for MIT and at East Lake Golf Club) during the last two weeks. The few pics of the main cast so far are of Lucas Till and George Eads; George rendering fans starstruck and posing on what looks like a hospital set. Justin Hires shared a short video of the Golf Set, both him and Tristin Mays wearing golf gear. Hopefully, they’re not looking for another Malaysian doctor to help with on-the-fly-surgery.

The fact that there will be a rerun of the Murdoc-Episode tonight (1×08: Corkscrew) gives Peter Lenkov some more time for the editing process on the crossover episode (1×18: Flashlight). Thanks to his Instagram Live Story on March 2, we finally know where that cute dog will show up.

Premieres of Episodes 16 and 17
Ratings have been falling. Episode 16 (Hook) had 7.24 million viewers (along with a 0.9 rating in the 18-49 demo group). Last week’s episode (Ruler) even earned the lowest ratings of the entire season so far (6.93 million viewers), but did better in the very important 18-49 demo group (1.1).

BtS of Episode 1×17: Ruler (via Deborah Mace)

Both times, the Hashtag #MacGyver has been trending again while the writers engaged in live tweetings. For the premiere of Episode 16, “Billy Colton” Lance Gross joined the writer’s office.

So far, we haven’t heard anything official about a possible season renewal, and while the crossover episode with Hawaii Five-0 will most likely get good ratings, it’s probably more important that the remaining three episodes manage to pull high numbers.

While many think a season renewal is a given, it’s interesting to note that both Lucas and George (who’s never on social media anymore) have urged people to watch the newest episodes to rise the numbers.

Lucas, Justin, the Stand-Ins and crew members along with the Colton-Cast posted many never-seen-before BtS pics (e.g. of the location scouting) and videos (e.g. of the blue-van-kaboom) to make us curious about the newest episodes. There was a LOT going on on social media during the premieres, so I was a bit surprised about the lower ratings.

BtS Episode 1×17: Ruler (via Tristin Mays / CBS)

Stills and Sneak Peeks
As for the last episodes, there was no new preview trailer for Episodes 16 or 17. We got stills and sneak peeks for Episode 17 (Ruler), though and stills and the above-mentioned preview trailer for Episode 18 (Flashlight).

Crossover Interviews and Other Promo
Several outlets have visited Lucas and George on set of the crossover episode. The Insider played lazy and let the two guys interview each other. ET Canada pretended to be disappointed about the set visit. No beaches, palm trees or guys with their shirts off – I guess they had a point.

On February 22, CBS Watch! Magazine released the BtS video of their photoshoot with Lucas and George. The interview with Justin Hires is also available to read on the website now.

Technical Advisor Rhett Allain posted some more learning videos; e.g. about “How to use Magnets like Mac“.

BtS of Poster Promo Shoot (via Nick Tortorici)

This week, some pictures have surfaced from the Poster Promo Shoot. In case you ever wondered why I’ve never posted a picture of the official poster (besides the wall painting on Hotel Figueroa) in any of my updates: I hate it. It’s so overly photoshopped and makes Lucas look like a snotty, smirking, bratty jerk. So it was a nice surprise to see a “real” BtS picture of Lucas hanging with that parachute (looks so much better!) and to know the crew also had a lot of fun doing this shoot.

aTVfest Appearance
As mentioned in my last update, Lucas, Tristin and Justin had made an appearance at aTVfest on February 4, attending a Q&A Panel along with Peter Lenkov and Jeff Downer. If you want to check it out, you can watch the full panel over here.

The most interesting part for me was Peter Lenkov talking about the role he had intended Richard Dean Anderson to play (starts at Minute 22). For fans of the original show, it’s not that much of a surprise (although it’s not the most obvious of the most likely choices, either).

aTVfest (via Tristin Mays)

Lenkov also revealed that the character of Bozer initially really had been planned as the comedic relief and unsuspecting roommate-slash-best friend, but talking to Justin Hires had made him revise the character and integrate him into the Phoenix Foundation.

Cast and Character News
Central Casting Georgia has been looking for a lot of Extras the last few weeks; e.g. for college students, business people, men with military or tactical experience, Asian golfers, reporters, LAPD, Baseball fans, agents, techs, a waiter and a waitress, patrons and for a “Caucasian looking Brunette woman” for a still photo shoot that will be playing the wife of an actor.

Interesting to note: Sandrine Holt was listed for Episode 19 on IMDb, but her credit has mysteriously disappeared. I really hope she’s coming back this season because her storyline has never been wrapped up to my satisfaction (and it probably never will as long as they keep her being a traitor). Her usual Stand-In (Briana Lamb) has been back on set, so I’m really hoping.

Episode 1×19: Compass (via Anthony Kountz)

Also, another Original MacGyver alumn has been seen on set: François Chau who played the character “Chi” in Episode 7×05 (The Coltons). I have to admit I don’t really remember his role, but I’ve seen him in several episodes of “Lost”.

As mentioned above, Dr. Zito will make an appearance in the Season Finale. Two villains for the finale seems a bit much, but there’s a chance we’ll get to see Murdoc an episode sooner because David Dastmalchian has been in Atlanta recently.

MacGyver Reboot Update #23

Disclaimer: My original guest-post was first published on The MacGyver Project on February 17, 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.

It’s official: MacGyver will have a crossover episode with Hawaii Five-0 next month!

Episode 18: Flashlight (via Daniel Dae Kim)

(Spoiler Alert: You will get spoilered by reading this post and its comments or by clicking on the links provided!)

 

MacGyver goes Hawaii
In my last guest-post (Update No. 22) two weeks ago, I speculated about an impending crossover between MacGyver and Hawaii Five-0. Executive Producer Peter Lenkov has said several times (e.g. at San Diego Comic Con) that he would love to do a crossover episode. He also talked about the connection between the two shows and the potential crossover he had written into the script for the pilot episode, namely a backstory of Jack Dalton sharing history with Steve McGarrett. (The scene had indeed been filmed, but the direct reference didn’t make it into the final cut.)

Pilot Episode: The Rising (via Peter Lenkov)

My speculations manifested due to Central Casting Georgia announcing a casting call on February 2 for Asian-looking Extras; in particular Hawaiians (certified in First Aid and CPR or having real life experience as EMTs, Paramedics, Doctors, Nurses or Rescue Workers).

Not even 20 hours later, Lucas Till spilled the beans by sharing a picture of Taylor Wily on the MacGyver set in Atlanta. It didn’t take long for press releases and articles to pop up with more information. According to TVLine, the Episode called “Flashlight” will air on March 10. The story will involve Mac and the team travelling to the big Island of Hawaii to aid in earthquake-relief efforts. There, MacGyver and Jack will team with Chin Ho and Kono to rescue a group of government scientists trapped in a building on the verge of collapse.

The Earthquake Episode
So far, not that many pictures have resurfaced from either sets in Atlanta or Hawaii. But we might get to see some special promo since they did cast interviews and B-Rolls on location.

Episode 18: Flashlight (via CBS Express)

On February 4, Taylor Wily posted a short video of the MacGyver home dressed up for Mac’s birthday. On February 9, Fred Andres granted us a first look at one of the sets – although back then, it was still unclear if the main cast would actually film scenes in Hawaii or if they would stay in Atlanta while 2nd Unit got the necessary outside film material on location.

On February 13, we finally got pictures of Lucas Till and George Eads on the earthquake set at Leahi Hospital. The crew was seen lifting heavy rocks around while the Stunt Team was already filming with Stunt Coordinator Jeff Wolfe. Casey Alicino revealed the director’s name (Jonathan Brown).

On Valentine’s Day, Daniel Dae Kim posted the first official picture of the crossover team. The Press Release on February 16 brought us the first official still. Seems there was a dress code to wear shades of blue!

BtS of Episode 16: Hook (via Tristin Mays)

Working on Episodes 18 and 19
While Lucas and George were in Hawaii, the rest of Team Phoenix filmed their scenes in Atlanta (e.g. on a jet or in the lab) with the crew working behind the scenes and the guest-stars finishing ADR (e.g. Jermaine Rivers for tonight’s Episode 16). It’s nice to see that despite the hard work, the cast still takes time to pose for pictures with the Extras or with fans.

Peter Lenkov posted some videos while editing; e.g. a video of editing Hawaii Five-0 that mentions Jack and the Phoenix Foundation. Interestingly, another (now deleted) video appeared to be a huge spoiler for the ending of next week’s episode 17 (Ruler).

As Anthony Kountz revealed today, they just started working on Episode 19. It’s nice to see it will be once again an episode directed by a woman (Christine Moore).

Premieres of Episodes 14 and 15
A few days before the premiere of Episode 15, Lucas and Justin and the crew had been teasing us with BtS pictures. Cast and crew seemed especially fascinated by the robot (that will make another appearance soon).

The Reboot continues to earn good ratings. Episode 14 (Fish Scaler) managed 7.5 million viewers while Episode 15 (Magnifying Glass) got a whopping 8.05 million viewers (along with a 1.2 rating in the 18-49 demo group).

BtS of Episode 15: Magnifying Glass (via Gabriel Beristain)

Since the news about the crossover episode was officially announced only hours before the premiere of Episode 15, the Hashtag #MacGyver was already trending not even 10 minutes into the episode.

The writer’s crew continued their tradition of live tweeting. Craig O’Neill posted a picture of the “new” MacGyver writer’s office which brought up another round of speculations about a possible season renewal.

Stills, Sneak Peeks and Press Releases
On February 3, we got an additional Sneak Peek for Episode 14 (Fish Scaler) via ET Online. For the Sneak Peeks for Episode 15 (Magnifying Glass), we had to wait until Premiere Day again.

Episode 16: Hook (via SpoilerTV)

We got many official stills for tonight’s Episode 16 (Hook). Sadly, CBS still witholds the previews. As for last Friday’s episode, there was no “real” preview trailer but a video put together with scenes from old episodes (e.g. Chisel or Metal Saw). We got 3 Sneak Peeks, though and therefore got to meet Mama Colton and Billy Colton – and most important: Frog Dog! For now, he’s just an Easter Egg on a painting in the background, but who knows what will happen.

So far, we haven’t seen much for Episode 17 (Ruler) besides the press release and a few stills via Getty Images. The press release for the crossover Episode 18 (Flashlight) was made available on February 17.

Interestingly, in an article about the crossover by Star Advertiser, it’s stated that the show “already has been green-lighted for a second year“. So far it’s unclear if that really means a Second Season or if some information got mixed up (because initially only 13 episodes had been ordered before the Full Season Order back in October). Since all of CBS’s Friday Night Shows are doing very well ratings-wise, it would be a no-brainer to renew them. It’s possible we won’t know before the upfronts in May, though.

Episode 17: Ruler (via SpoilerTV)

According to Broadway World, there will be a rerun of Episode 8 (Corkscrew) on March 3.

aTVfest Appearance
On February 4, Lucas, Tristin and Justin made an appearance for SCAD aTVfest. After doing some interviews, they attended the Q&A for the screening of Episode 14 (Fish Scaler), along with Peter Lenkov and Jeff Downer. Since the event took place on a Saturday, the cast worked through another weekend but still took time to post pictures and videos.

In the interview with FanBolt, Lucas revealed that he was indeed heading to Hawaii for filming. He also acknowledged Richard Dean Anderson’s involvement in the Original Show; stating that he doesn’t know how RDA handled the workload being in every scene while not having an ensemble cast like they do for the Reboot.

SCAD aTVfest Photocall (via Twitter)

Cast and Character News
Central Casting Georgia did several rush calls to get their extras for the crossover episode; e.g. for Tactical Guys and for a “real EMT with experience operating a gurney”. Other casting calls included Asian and Caucasian Men to portray National Guardsmen as well as calls for Agents and “Techies”, Airport Passengers and MIT Students.

As TV Guide Magazine revealed, we will get to know the backstory between Jack and Matty and see more scenes of the Phoenix director in the field.

Peter Lenkov promised weeks ago that Sandrine Holt will be back – and look, she’s listed for Episode 19 on IMDb. Interesting. Although I still think she will show up in the Season Finale along with Nikki and/or Murdoc; especially since Lenkov also revealed that Murdoc will come back this season (and there aren’t that many episodes left to film).

MacGyver Reboot Update #4

Disclaimer: My original guest-post was first published on The MacGyver Project on July 24, 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.

The MacGyver Reboot has been filming the pilot episode for its second week – and stopped by for a visit at the ComicCon in San Diego!

via Instagram

 

(Spoiler Alert: To avoid spoilers, I won’t post any revealing pics, but that doesn’t mean you won’t get spoilered by reading my posts or clicking on the links provided!)

 

Aloha from Set
During the second week of shooting, Executive Producer Peter Lenkov and several crew members continued to grant us a look inside the production. On July 18, Stunt Coordinator Jeff Wolfe posted a video of a stuntman climbing on a military truck driving along the highway with a helicopter following behind the truck. Pretty cool!

On the same day, Lenkov posted several pictures of George Eads in full military gear, looking like a sniper trying to take out the bad guys. Lenkov included a picture with “Aloha” written on the rifle; therefore sending a “little love letter” to his crew filming Hawaii Five-0. On the same day, he posted a short video of Lucas Till as MacGyver cutting some wires while wearing a protection suit. Looks like he just saved the day again by defusing another bomb!

Peter Lenkov introduced us to “Team MacGyver” by posting a picture with Lucas Till (MacGyver), George Eads (Jack Dalton), Sandrine Holt (Patricia Thornton) and Tristin Mays (Riley Davis). Composer Keith Power has started scoring – and apparently needs lots of coffee while doing it.

via Peter Lenkov

 

Tanks, Helicopters and Bikini Babes
On July 19, we got several pictures of a tank on set. A tank that soon got invaded by bikini-clad women in heels while carrying weapons. Hmm. SkyDroneCinema called it a “hot hot day on set” while Lenkov asks the same question that fans have been asking on the MacGyver Online Forums and on the MacGyver Online Facebook Page: “What does this have to do with #macgyver???”

Chris Payne Gilbert sure had fun with this scene, as did George’s StandIn Mikey Leo and model Teresita Vicente (although she later deleted her Instagram picture stating she had been shooting Ninjas all day with a machine gun while wearing a bathing suit). While some fans were as happy as Lucas and George snagging Ninja-Shooting Bikini Babe India Batson for a picture, others were either confused or disappointed; stating that “Baywatch With Tanks” wasn’t the image the show should be going for. I’m still guessing at what this scene should be. Opening Gambit? Weird Dream? Fantasy? Music Video for the Soundtrack? We’ll see in September.

On the same day, Lenkov posted pictures of a helicopter on set while SkyDroneCinema shared a video back from the Estate Party Night Shoot at the Swan House in which we get to know New MacGyver’s fighting style.

via Peter Lenkov

 

MacGyver at Comic Con: Multitool and fun ride
CBS had announced before that they would hand out a new version of the “MacGyver Multitool” and that fans would have the chance to take free rides in electric cars. Lucas and George got to enjoy a ride while doing interviews. It didn’t take long for visitors at Comic Con San Diego to share pictures of their paperclip, most of them complimenting the advertizing.

Interestingly, the MacGyver logo on the electric cars and on the shirts of the Multitool-Promo-Crew is different: The SAK is gone. In the meantime, it has also disappeared from the logos on the official social media accounts. Let’s hope it doesn’t get replaced by a paperclip somehow, because I really liked the old logo. To be honest, I’m a bit disappointed about the change – partly because THIS is the only tool MacGyver really needs, but mostly because being from Switzerland, I was always very proud of a Swiss product so prominently featured in the most favorite TV show of my childhood. Thanks to MacGyver, until my former male classmates had to join the military service at the age of 18 I believed that the official SAK at that time was red (it was actually silver until 2008; now they’re handing out a very different model in green).

 

via CBS Watch! Magazine
MacGyver at Comic Con: Panel and Roundtable Interviews
Besides Lucas Till and George Eads, both Peter Lenkov and James Wan attended the panel and did several interview rounds.

Watching the 30-minutes-panel, the team seems to work very well together and the chemistry between Till and Eads is great (they already turned the people behind the Keysmash Blog Twitter Account into shippers). If you’re interested in the video, you can check it out here. (Sadly, the additional two short video clips they showed have not been made public yet.)

Especially Peter Lenkov and James Wan managed to ease a lot of the worries weighing on us fans. Wan acknowledged that MacGyver is “such a different hero from what we see on TV these days” and stated that they want to retain that spirit of a great role model blessed with intelligence and humanity.

Lenkov promised to include lots of Easter Eggs for fans of the old show. He revealed hoping to involve cast members of the original version and reaching out to Richard Dean Anderson. This admission led to dozens of online articles popping up even before the panel ended; e.g. by Variety, Deadline or the Hollywood Reporter. While it is still unclear what kind of role they would offer to him, an appearance of RDA sure would draw in many fans still wary of a reboot.

While the producers want to honor the legacy and won’t turn Angus MacGyver into some kind of Jason Bourne or James Bond, Lenkov also said that they will update some of the techniques, meaning different shooting styles and editing techniques. Additionally, MacGyver won’t be a “lone wolf” anymore but more of a team player (which has become a standard in almost every modern tv show, but I’m still not sure if this is always a good thing).

via Hollywood Reporter

In the Roundtable Interview posted by Seat42F, Lucas Till admitted having catched some reruns in his youth, but not being an avid fan back then. He’s currently on Season 2 for research purposes. George Eads stated feeling the pressure and the tiring shooting schedule, but also feeling very proud being part of this project. Seat42F shared another Roundtable Interview with Lenkov and Wan, where Lenkov confirmed that they would keep the Opening Gambits. Regarding the challenges about setting the reboot into 2016, Wan and Lenkov stated that while today’s world is very much digital and so many problems are solved with computers,MacGyver still thinks in analog ways. Wan always liked that MacGyver only turned to violence as a last resort; and while the show is set “in a modern world that is so violent“, he wants the hero to keep using his brain for creative problem solving.

In the press junket interview posted by sandwichjohnfilms, Lenkov promised that we will see why Lucas Till is the perfect MacGyver. Lenkov is aware that people are very sceptical of this reboot and wants to retain the soul of the old show while introducing it to a new audience. For Wan, it doesn’t matter what type of film he’s making (action, horror or comedy; low-budget or blockbuster), because for him it’s all about the characters and if the chemistry is right, then “the action and the set-pieces are just the cream on the cake that makes it all the more tastier“.

In a video interview with Entertainment Weekly, Lucas Till repeated his earlier statement in the panel that he would be okay wearing a mullet in the next season.

via CBS

The article by USA Today confirms that the show will keep the voice-overs. During a video interview with ET Online, Lucas had joked about his stunt guy sitting on the sidelines – and he already paid the price for it, as the article reveals: Till (…) has persuaded producers to let him perform a number of MacGyver’s tricky stunts. He sports a band-aid on his finger from a cut suffered grabbing the side of a serving tray at the end of a complicated kick-and-catch move. Let’s hope he realizes that having a stunt person is actually a good thing, no matter how much fun it is to do the stunts yourself – otherwise, RDA might explain (and show) it to him.

Cast and Crew News
During last week, Central Casting Georgia has made several casting calls; e.g. for Ninjas, Korean workers and soldiers, Caracas guards or Asian hackers. They’re also looking for old cars and mopeds and for a hand double – judging by the provided picture, probably for Lucas Till.

Singer George Lott announced on July 19 that he will have a featured cameo role in the show – maybe even for the episode called “Baywatch with Tanks”?

Peter Lenkov shared the information that it’s only 5 more days with James Wan until moving forward onto the next episode. So far, we don’t know yet its title or its director – but the casting calls indicate an Asian setting. Brian Durkin is back on the studio lot writing new episodes, so there will be more casting calls soon.

Back Home
Several times, Peter Lenkov had already posted pictures of the Griffith Observatory back in LA – MacGyver’s home in the original pilot. The speculations and hopes of many fans turned out to be true when Pilot Episode Director James Wan posted a picture on July 23 of the crew shooting at Griffith Park in front of the observatory. New MacGyver is definitely going back to his roots.