At the end of Minority Report, the 2002 film based on Philip K. Dick’s 1956 short story, the trio of psychics who could predict crimes before they happened were freed and moved to an undisclosed location as the whole PreCrime unit was shut down. If you were left wondering what happened to them next, you can tune in Monday night on Fox when the Minority Report TV series debuts.
Stark Sands plays Dash, one of the three precogs who decides to use his ability to predict the future to help Detective Lara Vega stop crimes before they happen. Laura Regan plays Stark’s foster sister and fellow precog Agatha, and Wilmer Valderra is Vega’s boss Will Blake. We sat down with the cast and crew of the new show to find out what to expect.
On whether Dash can control his power to see the future
He has a limited ability to control it. When it’s a murder it overcomes him, and he literally has to find somewhere to hide so that people don’t wonder why this guy is have a convulsion. But, little things throughout the day, little things like someone dropping a tray of silverware or which elevator is going to open, he gets a little twitch, and he knows what’s going to happen. So, it’s all based on the proximity to him. There are moments in the show where I have to revisit my vision in order to continue the journey of solving the crime. So there’s a little bit of control, but not a lot.
On the movie’s ability to predict future technologies
After seeing the movie and Tom Cruise swiping all those images left and right, Steve Jobs saw the film and said, “I want to use that. Let’s make that real.” That’s how we have swiping technology on our phones. So, it’s pretty neat to know that there’s a legacy of being innovative and predicting the future, if you will. It’s exciting to know that we have an opportunity as a show to predict the future from a standpoint of science and not fantasy. All of the things that they are inventing for the show are based in science, and they’re feasible inventions. They may not happen next year, but they very much could happen in 50 years.
On having to shave his head.
I have to shave it shorter than this. I’ll do whatever, man. I’m working for Steven Spielberg. You tell me to what to do.
On new technologies we’ll see in the show
We have a lot of really interesting things. Like on the smaller side, there was a selfie-drone, which is actually something that is being created right now, where you’ll see in the show that it comes off of a kids wrist and goes up into the air and takes pictures, like selfies of all these kids. That’s something that’s being created. We also have something that Mr. Spielberg came up with that is called a Smart-Gun, and that gun actually runs your information and makes a choice about what kind of bullets—or if it’s going to use an air gun—if that person had a record, all of that stuff. There’s a lot of really interesting things in the world that are coming up.
On his character, Lt. Will Blake
I’m currently Lara Vega’s boss. We may or may have not had something in the past, and therefore makes it for a very unique dynamic between Vega and Blake. She may not want to admit it, but they’re both—together—actually brilliant. They can really, really see cases come to life, and really crack it. They make a unique pair, and even though I’m a higher ranked officer, she is someone that I not only respect, but I feel like there is something really special in her. I am more about the book. I believe in the program, I believe in the system, I believe in the law, and therefore, he’s climbing up the ladder fairly quickly because he’s the overachiever. She’s a little more rogue. She’s a little more of that rebel. She doesn’t mind going off the grid to figure something out. So you’ll see them clash a little bit throughout the process, and eventually he may get some kind of information that she’s working with an informant, and she’s real good about solving these cases, and eventually they’re going to go, “You’ve got to share this informant.” Will he find out that he’s a precog? How is he going to feel about that based upon his character traits about being by-the-book and by the spirit of what the prison is about? Or will he cover up for her based upon the relationship that they used to have? There’s a lot of that really great character work that’s going to happen there, but what’s also really exciting about the show is we’re going to be solving crimes that we could never imagine being pulled off today. We’re going to be solving crimes inspired by technology that doesn’t exist, that is probably going to assist the crime world on a different level. I also think that that makes it for a unique race to justice. You know, how do we evolve faster than the technology that’s assisting our crimes? To me, that’s an incredible race. And in that moment, Steven Spielberg has done a fantastic job at creating what that next evolution of the prison, and where did the prison go after pre-cime was abolished. And he created a weapon, and I’m not allowed to say too much, but he created a weapon that is going to be exciting. It’s going to be a weapon that was inspired by key events that are happening today that could probably assist to be safer, and help being a cop more efficiently. So, it’s going to be unique.
On being a sci-fi fan
Huge fan. When I heard Harrison Ford’s voice in the new Star Wars trailer, I not only got the goosebumps, I got a little teary-eyed in the theatre. I was like, “This is a dream. To see that character come to life again.” And today, not only technology, but directors have reinvented the way we tell stories, and the way that we narrate the stories. Based on the tools that we have to today, and the technology that we have today, imagine the stories that we can now tell. Steven [Spielberg] has been that pioneer that creates new technology to tell a story. You go back to the [Minority Report] movie, that was what 2002, and now you look at the technology we have now to tell that story today. I mean the fact that he was able to pull that off in 2002, imagine what we can do now in 2015.
That technology can come to television, and then do it on the scale that fans really want to see. Today, it doesn’t matter where you see your content, and it doesn’t matter where you watch it really, it’s about the filmmakers, the actors. But I’m a huge fan of the genre and what a great way to see it.
On her character, Agatha
My character is very complicated. She had a very strange history that she shares with Dash, and she basically was a drug-baby, a non-functioning human. They saw, and they were able to sort of fix her, but she had this accidental gift that she was psychic. So when they realized this, then she was basically put into service. She was exploited, and from a very young age, and from the film, as you will remember her lying in that milk bath sedated and subject to these haunting horrible visions. So, that’s her history at the end of the film. Pre-Crime is dismantled, and here we are 10 years later. I think at this point, at the beginning of the series, my character has chosen to remove herself from that world and really ignore it because isolation for her is just a way of maintaining her own sanity. But, if she were to be thrust back into that world, which she may, I think she’s open to many different directions. She could be someone who, because she doesn’t trust anyone, she becomes more calculating herself, or she acts out on her bitterness, I don’t know. Or, maybe she does take a more benign approach, I’m not sure. So, where she goes from here is a great journey for me.
On similarities with the film
There’s a continuity with this series. When we went out to the house, that was where Tom Cruise’s wife lived—it was more like a lush green landscape, and yet the city had kind of more like dark and threatening elements. There’s a continuity in that and of course in the effects. The effects are kind of unreal, and I didn’t do much green screen stuff—only a little bit. There’s one thing that happens to my character, but these guys are doing so much green-screen stuff to where when they see it, right afterwards they are like, “Wow! Wow!”
Minority Report debuts Monday, Sept. 21 on Fox.