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While some fans waited for more than three hours to get into the ballroom, others camped out early through the day’s other sessions in the room, and as the clock struck 7 p.m., the chants for “Orphan Black! Orphan Black!” rang through the stuffy room.
When star Tatiana Maslany and her co-stars finally took the stage, prolonged screams echoed, making it clear that the sci-fi clone thriller has caught on like wildfire among fans and critics alike.
“I was running on adrenaline the whole time,” Maslany said of the insane nature of the show’s production, as she plays a handful (and more!) of fully defined clones.
Among the panel — including Jordan Gavaris (Felix) and Dylan Bruce (Paul) as well as showrunner Graeme Manson — the favorite clones included soccer-mom Alison and Cosima, whom Manson revealed is partially inspired by the show’s science adviser.
Between clips highlighting the show’s most shocking reveals and complex characters, the creators and cast offered a few clues for season two of the drama and the show’s borderline characters whose motives remain unclear.
Manson also acknowledged the Supreme Court’s recent decision that human genes can’t be patented and noted that could eventually make its way into the series. “Thematically, definitely. That decision was really crazy. The synthetic aspect leaves it open to interpretation of: What is synthetic? We are going to be looking at the issue of the patents and how much legal space there is around that. I find it thematically interesting and quite ominous as well. We hit zeitgeist when the world is reflected in your show and vice versa.”
Manson and Maslany both shared that the cast and producers learned via Tumblr that the little show that could had become a certified fan favorite. “That was a real moment for us, to realize what kind of fans we had,” he said of how the show was embraced. For Fawcett, it was when Maslany shocked Hollywood to win the Critics’ Choice Award.
Executive producer John Fawcett also teased that Maslany could be even busier in season two with new clones likely to join the mix. “We do like our clones! I don’t think anyone would be surprised if we unveiled a couple of new clones in season two; I don’t think that’s letting the cat out of the bag too much.”
As for Cosima’s future, Manson said the character’s respiratory issues will be addressed immediately in season two. “She has to look at her own science — when she looks at her own science, she has to look at the health of all of her sisters. … It’s still up in the air; we don’t know what’s going to happen to Cosima.” Also up in the air is whether the series will depict any flashbacks featuring Beth’s history, which producers would like to do if the story can still maintain its forward momentum.
Producers are in the midst of writing season two and have been back at work for a few months. “We finished the season-one finale a week and a half before it premiered,” Fawcett shared, noting that he and Manson worked out a lot of details during hiatus. Production begins Sept. 23, and the writers return to work in August. Season two will return in April 2014. BBC America renewed Orphan Black in May for a 10-episode second season.
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