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Becker's Terry Farrell, October 29, 1998

TVGEN: Tonight's chat is with Terry Farrell (formerly Jadzia Dax on Deep Space Nine), who stars in the new CBS sitcom Becker. Becker stars Ted Danson and Terry Farrell and premieres on CBS on Monday November 2nd. Hi Terry! Welcome to the chat!

Terry Farrell: Hi everybody! Dax lives in the body of Regina Kostas.

Phasic: Hey Terry! What's it like working with Ted Danson?

Farrell: Actually, auditioning with him was great, he is a very generous actor. He came in the first time I met him and offered to run lines with all the actors in the room so he would be good for the producers. He said it wasn't for us but it was for him, because he wanted to make sure that HE got the job. So it's a joy! Now that I have the job, he has notes for me every day! LOL!

Kelly_42749: What is Becker about?

Farrell: Becker is Dr. Becker, and he's a doctor who is more than politically incorrect, he is someone who is brutally honest. Like being alone with me in a room, I'd probably tell you exactly what was on my mind. Those who know me as Dax know it's true. But John Becker will say exactly what's on his mind, any time, any place, anywhere, he doesn't care what anybody thinks. But at least people know where he's coming from. It's about a doctor who lives in the Bronx. And I own a coffee shop where he eats his breakfast and his lunch. He pretty much hangs out at my place. I inherited it from my father. It's the trials and tribulations of this doctor, and the people surrounding him in his life.

Trekkie_Girl: Is Becker easier then DS9?

Farrell: Umm, it's very different. Easier in that there is no techno babble, the hours are better, but the style is different and the lines change every day. We rehearse every day, but I enjoy it because it's challenging and fun.

totdoc_kc: What are you going to miss about Deep Space Nine?

Farrell: I suppose I would miss Dax, I miss playing her, I liked playing her very much. I keep hoping they'll resurrect me for a couple of shows.

Phasic: When does Becker start to air?

Farrell: Monday, November 2 at 9:30 pm on CBS.

low_q_tus: What's your realationship with Becker's character like?

Farrell: Right now I'm just getting to know him, just taking over the coffee shop. Two months ago. She likes him, but she finds him a bit of nuisance, and she doesn't want his rants to scare away other customers. And I think as much as she finds his tirades a little over the top at times, I think she'd really miss him if he wasn't there. There is an attraction that is there that you don't see in the pilot. They like each other but they don't know it yet.

brian_wassom: What was your favorite DS9 episode and why?

Farrell: I'm sorry I can't remember the name of it, but the one where Michael Dorn and I got married was the most fun to work on. I mean when Worf and Dax got married! But six years, man, I could pick quite a few.

totdoc_kc: Do you still keep in touch with the other actors from DS9?

Farrell: Yeah, I've seen Michael Korn, Colm Meaney, and Armin Shimmerman. But I've been busy with the new show, so I'm sure I'll see others as my time and theirs opens up.

totdoc_kc: How did you hear about the role for Becker?

Farrell: I was in my manager's office, Rick Ax's office. And he was telling me I was going to have this audition, and I was going to have to pre-read, which means read with the casting director first, because I didn't have half-hour experience in the comedy format. They had never seen me at a Trekkie convention. So thank you to all you Trekkies for coming to all those conventions, because you helped me with the studio audience!

kalel224: Any plans to do more Trek conventions, or is that over?

Farrell: No one's actually invited me to any, so if you hear that I'm at one, watch out!

Smoke271: What's it like knowing that in a way, your character (Ezri Dax) is still there?

Farrell: I guess it would be an interesting connection to the worm hole aliens in the respect of quantum physics that there is no linear time, and everything exists at the same moment, so I'm not really dead. Nor will I ever be. Nor have I ever been. I'm just remembering!

Phasic: Have you had any funny incidents happen on the Becker set yet?

Farrell: Funny as in strange funny? Well Ted brags about having gas on the set of Ink. I keep telling him I can't go there, it's too much information! But otherwise, it's just fun to be there. No pranks yet.

MiddleOfNowhere_84: Hi. How different are Dax and Reggie from each other?

Farrell: Oh. Well Dax is an alien and Reggie is human. So Dax, having 350 years of experience, is much stronger, dare I say more intelligent, much more secure in who she is. Reggie is at a time in her life where she doesn't know who she is, what she wants from her life. And she feels she is a victim of her environment, meaning she's trapped.

Ezri_dax25: Why did you have to leave the set of Deep Space Nine?

Farrell: My contract of six years was up. And at first I thought maybe the only thing they could give me was more money. But I realized that I was really ready to move on and do something different. And specifically that there are nine regular characters, there wasn't going to be a whole lot more for me to do in the last season. So I decided in my heart it was time for me to move on. It just happened that Becker was there for me. That wasn't planned by Paramount. But more a fortunate stroke in my career, because it was exactly what I wanted to do.

JENNYGIRL1234: What was the funnest thing you ever did on Deep Space Nine

Farrell: I guess whatever made you laugh.

DDPealer: How does Becker distinguish itself from other sitcoms both past and present?

Farrell: Wow. Well I'm not really an authority on sitcoms. As you know I was in deep space for six years! I think its honesty is wonderful, and it's not overly broad. I think the humor is in the story. Much like how it was in MASH, or All in the Family. But hopefully you guys will like it and you can tell me.

JadzDax: How many episodes have you taped for Becker so far?

Farrell: Seven.

Phasic: Did you ever watch Ted Danson when he was in Cheers?

Farrell: Well, yeah!

jensenad: How did you get the part of DAX?

Farrell: Well, I read for Next Generation and had a bad audition. So the casting director for DS9 didn't want to see me. So I got into the auditioning process at the very end. And consequently I got hired last and they had already been filming for a couple of weeks. I had to test for it and one girl didn't show up, so they wanted to test again, so I tested a second time. And I was going down to the Next Generation set after my audition to go see Marina, Michael and Jonathan. When a guard stopped me and told me I had to go back to Rick Berman's office, I was afraid I had to test again. But it was to tell me I got the part of Dax. I was so relieved I cried.

Sweetang_98: Did you and Ted Danson ever meet before Becker, like at the 30th anniversary of Star Trek special?

Farrell: No. But it felt like I knew him when I met him. It's was one of those times when you meet somebody and it's just very easy to be around them.

prismchild: Terry, what was the most challenging part of playing Jadzia and the most disappointing, other than leaving the show?

Farrell: The most challenging part initially was that they didn't know who Dax was. They had a description, but they didn't know how to write it. And I didn't know how to play 350 years old; seven lifetimes of experience. And besides that, the techno babble. The most disappointing was that in my last season I didn't have any fight scenes other than hitting the woman in my wedding episode. I really liked the fight scenes.

Beckah23: Is Becker something that you have any input into? Do you have any interest in directing?

Farrell: Wow! No interest in directing yet. Our director Andy Ackerman is incredibly talented. And yes, I do have input. Dave Hackel, the creator, is very open minded and willing to discuss the characters with all of the actors, so it's a wonderfully creative environment to work in. So, one of my inputs this summer before we started was that I suggested that Reggie be interested in holistic medicine, as a nice opposition to Becker, who's a regular doctor, and not very openminded. So that Becker could find frustration with Reggie, and her new old age beliefs. Or old new age beliefs.

SCHSDrama: Who was the most fun cast member on DS9 to work with?

Farrell: Colm Meaney. Yeah. And Armin. Colm because he'd always try to make you laugh. And Armin, well, how couldn't you have fun playing with a Ferengi?

JadzDax: Do you like the way Dax's character turned out in the end, like personality wise?

Farrell: Hmmm. I don't know, I didn't have much to do in the last season. So, I felt that there were things missing, that I didn't get to do as much as I could have done. But again, with nine regulars that's to be expected. The writers can only do so much. And God knows I don't want their job.

tdn_22477: How much like Dax are you in real life?

Farrell: I wish I was more like Dax.

jrblackstone: How do you think the American public will react to seeing Becker on November 2nd... will it be the next Seinfeld?

Farrell: Well, I definitely hope so. Ted Danson is so talented, and the character having the curmudgeon exterior and the big heart, I don't see how people can't love that character. I just hope they love the world we've all created. So yeah, I hope it's huge. I want to work at Paramount six more years. So watch, watch, watch!

Majellin_the_Great: Any advice for the new Dax chick?

Farrell: I don't know, because I haven't even seen it. I think I'd have to meet her before I gave her, or anybody advice. But if I did meet her, and she wanted advice, I would be happy to give it to her. Maybe she hated how I did the character!

FJSichetti: Did you watch Star Trek as a kid?

Farrell: Yes. I watched it as a kid. We actually used to play it in the backyard of my elementary school. There would always be the alien damsel in distress. I was the tallest girl in school, and the shortest guy in school always played Captain Kirk. And a pile of leaves was always our spaceship! In the back of my elementary school!

Ezri_dax25: You said in an interview you liked the action scenes with Worf, why is that?

Farrell: Because they are choreographed, and they are sort of like a workout. And Michael was good at it, and we sort of had an ease with each other. So it was fun to have the fight scenes with him.

JadzDax: Do you have any specific way you want Jadiza's death to be avenged?

Farrell: Oh, wow! Well, I hope Worf gets to do it.

kalel224: What did you try out for on Next Generation?

Farrell: I don't remember the name of it, but it was the character that Famke Jansen played. They wanted her to play Dax.

syacia: Terry, was comedy something you wanted to do, or is this a stepping stone to something else?

Farrell: I would have to say yes to both. Yes I wanted to do comedy, and yes I believe it is a stepping stone. What I enjoy about the half hour that we didn't get to do on DS9 is that we get to rehearse a lot. And that, as an artist, is a joy. To get to work on the material. I want to thank everyone who enjoyed my portrayal of Jadzia Dax. And I will always have fond memories of her. She helped me grow up. And I hope you all enjoy Reggie on Becker, as much as I'm enjoying playing her. I wish you all great happiness, great health, and may all your dreams come true. And God bless you all.