Eon Magazine - Nov. '98 - The Prince of Wing Commanders
THE PRINCE OF WING COMMANDERS
Freddie Prinze, jr. who plays Chris "Maverick" Blair in the big screen movie WING COMMANDER told EON NEWS, "WING COMMANDER combined two of my dreams in one. My dreams for making films were as follows: a western, which I haven't done yet, a war movie, and a sci-fi movie. WING COMMANDER handled two of those. It's huge! It's World War Two, seven hundred years in the future. That's what it is."
The film co-stars Matthew Lillard as Todd "Maniac" Marshall (the role BACK TO THE FUTURE's Tom Wilson played in the video games), Saffron Burrows as Jeanette "Angel" Devereaux, Jurgen Prochnow as Commander Gerald, Tcheky Kayro as Commander James "Paladin" Taggart, with David Warner as Admiral Tolwyn and David Suchet as Captain Sansky.
Prinze admitted to EON NEWS, "When I got the script, I thought, wait a minute, is this a computer game? But it was a feature script, and it's amazing. It talks about how this war starts affecting all these characters on a personal level. And some of them are able to step up to the challenge, and others are dying. They die. Characters that you love, you've had time to love them, and then they're gone. It's so real. Remember THE BIG RED ONE, that Samuel Fuller movie? The new guys would come in and they wouldn't even talk to them, because they were like, 'you're going to be dead in a week, man!' And that's how it was! In WING COMMANDER, we [Prinze and Lillard] get called 'Nuggets', because we're like the rookies on the ship."
Directed by Chris Roberts from a script by Kevin Droney and Mike Finch based on the popular computer game, the film has been rated PG-13 (for sexual references and sci-fi action/violence).
Prinze explains, "The basic plot is that Earth is now joined together, we're called the Confederation. There's this other race, called the Kilrathi, who have been trying to take over our galaxy now for a while. The only reason we've been able to resist them is because we have something they don't: a Navcom navigational computer. It helps you chart your way through black holes and quasars. It saves space travel like forty years, like you can go that far in two minutes, because you're warping through a star. So the Kilrathi get one of these Navcoms, and they have the coordinates to get into Earth's space. They'll be here in forty hours. The Confederation ships can't get back to Earth for forty-two hours. There's one ship between the Korathi and this jump point, the Diligent, and me and Matt are flying in that ship. So it's this last big stand for the Earth, against the Kilrathi, and it's the ingenuity of these pilots that has them defeat this warrior race. So it's really sick. It's cool."
Look for WING COMMANDER and the Kilrathi to attack a theater near you early next year.