Two transcripts and one quote from due South 1998 promotional UK TV tour
- This Morning with Richard & Judy, UK TV interview, 2 April 1998
- Electric Circus, UK TV interview, 4-Apr-98
- Radio Times, British TV magazine article, May 1998
Year’s a bit dubious: 1997 or 1998 – I went with the one mentioned for the pics and in the transcripts, i.e. 1998. Seems that Callum and Paul have been visiting UK in April-May of that year to promote the ‘new’ Season Three before it aired on UK TV’s.
Transcripts are largely inspired by those originally available from Real due South defunct interviews page. Most pics are from Real due South too.
One last note: this is more for historic and cuteness value than for the contents per se –the first one being particularly inane – odd?
Paul Gross and Callum Keith Rennie on ’This Morning with Richard & Judy’ - UK TV, 2 April 1998 (interview)
‘This Morning with Richard & Judy’ was an ITV talk show (1988 – 2001). The husband and wife team of Richard Madeley and Judy Finnigan were joined by specialist presenters and celebrities "to bring entertainment, advice and features".
Female reporter: Now when CBS axed due South, the female population held its breath. Well they’ll never get their man again. The man in question was of course, the very handsome Canadian Mountie Fraser, but don’t worry because a new series is on its way and this time there’s a sexy side kick and it’s not the husky dog, don’t worry, but Chicago’s Det. Kowalski.
(clip of Burning Down The House, Ray and Fraser in the burning car)
fr (laughing): We like that one a lot. We’ve just been joined by Paul Gross who plays Fraser in the series, and Callum Keith Rennie who plays the new addition Kowalski, is that right- Kowalski?
Callum Keith Rennie: Yeah, Stanley Raymond Kowalski.
fr: So what was the story? Why did CBS drop it? Had they just kind of enough of it?
Paul Gross: I have no idea - because they’re sorta misguided I think.
fr: But you had a huge following didn’t you?
PG: Well it was– television in the United States is odd.
fr: Is it?
PG: It’s a real cut-throat business and you pretty much have to be a runaway hit and it wasn’t- it really didn’t seem to have any champions inside CBS.
Richard Madeley: Was it because of the people- the suits, didn’t get it? Cause you know it’s important they get what the humor is about.
PG: Yeah, I think that’s part of it but I also think it’s a difficult show- it’s a difficult show for them to figure out how to sell to an audience in the United States. US TV is very narrow and, you know, this is odd, a nation of odd people, and you seem to be able to absorb a lot, a much broader kind of range in television.
RM: If you think this is weird, you have no idea.
PG: We had a very interesting dinner last night with very odd people.
RM: Did you? Did you, with English people?
RM: You find it strange then?
PG: Well I went to the– I pushed the button last night.
fr: Oh, you did the lottery, didn’t you?
PG: That was very hard.
RM: Oh, you were on the lottery!
fr: You did it in your gear as well, didn’t you?
fr: You did that in your Mountie gear as well, didn’t you?
PG: Yeah, sort of it. And I went on to Noel’s house party, which was another odd event.
RM: You’ve done that one as well have you? That’s got very strange.
PG: That’s very odd!
RM: Yeah, I think-
PG: So I think the show is fine.
RM: Yeah, it’s fine here.
fr: Thanks god. Thank the lord. Come on, tell us about us.
PG: No, no- in the United States, it’s difficult because they do have sorta half hour sitcoms, that's that, and then there’s hour long family dramas, hour long police shows. It’s not- they have to be really sorta rigidly divided and our show sorta crosses over that stuff.
RM: What would you call it? I mean, for people who haven’t seen due South it’s very hard to explain. It’s hard to explain how it works, but it does work.
PG: I don’t know... (turning to Callum) What would you-
RM: How would you define it? Mind, I’m just introduced to due South.
CKR: It’s a buddy show that sorta, at the same time, you know, like it touches- like it’s farcical, it’s dramatic, it’s really touching in each episode. It has a soul of its own. So it functions the way other American shows sorta go. It’s a slice- you know, they do a real sorta slice of life.
RM: Yeah. For example, how do you make a burning house and a Mountie going in to rescue people, how’d you make that funny? You do! Here it is. It’s funny.
(clip of BDTH, Vecchios house burning, Fraser rescuing Frannie and Tony)
RM: Nice. I still prefer the burning car sequence.
PG: The burning car’s pretty good.
RM: Now for those who did see the series, (to Callum) you come in, we see you, you have the name of your old partner, right?
RM (to Paul): You come back to work and it is a different partner but with the same name and everyone’s pretending that it’s the old guy.
RM: This isn’t a shallow routine-
fr: It’s a dream!
RM: There’s a reason for this- there’s a reason for this. What’s the reason?
PG: Well the convention is that Ray Vecchio is a dead ringer for a guy in the mob who dies.
RM: So, the old one.
PG: But the mob doesn’t know this. There’s a window of opportunity that the FBI can take him and install him as undercover.
PG: And in order to preserve his cover, someone has to be at the police station answering to the name of Ray Vecchio.
RM: But he’s a very different character from your old partner.
PG: I know. It’s not exactly like- they don’t keep the rules up for very long.
RM: No, no, it gets boring. (to Callum) You’re actually- What were you doing before? You’ve done lots of stuff.
CKR: I filmed lots of guest stars and movies of the week and films so…
RM: It doesn’t get much better than joining due South, does it?
CKR: No. it’s great. It’s been a great year. I mean- you know
RM: Cool, right?
RM (to Paul): Back to you. You’re from Canada aren’t you?
RM: Yeah, my Mom’s from there.
PG: Oh, is she?
RM: Yeah, she was born in Saskatoon.
RM: That’s interesting, isn’t it?
PG (laughs): Very empty, is Saskatoon!
RM: Very empty, yes, Saskatoon. But you were born in Alberta was it?
PG: Yeah, yeah.
RM: Where’s that? the West coast?
PG: The Rocky Mountains.
RM: The Rocky part. So do you still feel different from an American? Or have you become absorbed?
PG: Yeah- no, no. I think most Canadians, we - (turning to Callum who nods), we are different.
RM (to Callum): But you’re an American?
CKR: No, I’m from Canada. Born in Britain but I live in Canada.
RM (to Paul): Yeah, go on...
PG: You don’t really feel it until you’re outside of the country. We have these endless debates in our country about national identity – ‘do we have one’ - these kinds of conversations. But you notice it when you’re gone.
RM: If you have to ask ‘do we have an identity’, then you probably don’t. Seriously, if you have to ask that question–
PG: No you do. But it’s just that you have to go out of the country to know.
RM: So, what is it, then? You’re out of the country now. How would you define-
PG: Oh, honestly! No I’m not going to talk about my Canadian identity (takes dorky voice) Canadian people are really kind.
RM: They’re not as brash as the Americans. Do you like the French Canadians?
RM: You’re happy with them?
PG: Yeah. I wish they’d stop trying to leave but they have those- they’re all going to leave.
RM: Most friendly up that way. Because I’ve met them. That way.
PG: Well they’re friends.
RM: Like in Montreal, they’re difficult. They’re difficult people. It’s quite exhausting going up there. It’s interesting but they’re difficult. They get cross with you if you don’t speak French. Just what they do in France.
fr: Yes, exactly. When does the new series start?
PG: In May. BBC One.
fr: In May, okay.
RM: What time, you know?
PG: That I don’t know. And I don’t know the date.
RM: Well, it starts in May. They’ll announce it.
fr: We will announce it.
RM: You know you are absolutely huge in Britain don’t you? I mean you know how big you are here? You’re massive.
PG: We’ve been told. Yeah.
fr: We like men in uniforms. It’s as simple as that actually.
RM: (...) What did you have for dinner last night by the way?
fr: Just go along with it. We’re odd, all right?
PG: Bass. Sea bass.
RM: Sea bass. Did you enjoy it?
RM: Good. Okay, (to Callum) what did you have for dinner last night?
CKR: (...) Vegetarian.
RM: Are you a vegetarian?
RM (to female reporter): You see? I told you. I’ve been saying this for ages, if you ask people what they had for dinner last night, you’ll find something out about them. We now know that he’s a partial vegetarian, which could have been interesting.
CKR: Could have been.
RM: Could have been, but we don’t got time –
PG: You’re a partial vegetarian, you only eat the occasional cow. (all laugh)
RM: We’re all parsing you know, everyone. Still, what she had for dinner last night, great story. (to female reporter) Go on, tell them, sweetheart!
fr: I was sad and lonely. I’d done lots of work in the afternoon, and I went to the cupboards, and a classic- the cupboards were bare. And so I opened the fridge door and very sweetly my boyfriend had dropped off a take away curry that he got the night before, with a little note, cause he thought I was gonna be there the night before, and-
RM: So she didn’t go home.
fr: And I was sorta awed, and I had a curry. And it was heaven. I loved it.
RM (to Paul and Callum): Thank you very much. It’s been strange.
fr: We’re all strange.
PG: You’re odd. You’re all proudly odd.
You can watch a video of the interview here.
Paul Gross and Callum Keith Rennie on ’Electric Circus’ - UK TV, 4 April 1998 (interview)
‘Electric Circus’ was a 15 minute BBC program (1993-2001), involving videos, computers and movies, included on the Saturday Morning television show ‘Live and Kicking’, a Saturday morning celebrity news/interview specials.
Reporter: This summer, Chicago’s finest crime fighting partners, Fraser and Vecchio, return to our screen.
We caught up with the duo from due South to find out what makes them such an arresting combination.
(clip of BDTH, Fraser snatching Ray’s fingerprints)
PG: Hi, I’m Paul Gross, Constable Benton Fraser with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and this is….
CKR: Callum Keith Rennie, Fraser’s new Detective partner, Raymond Vecchio.
PG: You are not Raymond Vecchio.
CKR: Yes, I am.
(clip of BDTH, Fraser licking electric sockets)
PG: Because he’s slightly insane we have an awfully good time together.
(clip of BDTH, Ray’s partners speech)
PG: We get along very well. We spend so much time together that it ends up, uh, we form a- what do you call it? A friendship?
CKR: A liaison.
Reporter: It looks like quite a dangerous liaison.
(clip of BDTH, exploding car)
PG: Making that sequence involves a bunch of different kinds of shooting. There are guys in asbestos suits driving what is completely a ball of flame. We’re actually in a stationary car with blue screen behind us. Those kinds of sets are very difficult to achieve.
CKR: But we were sitting in a car and we were acting and it was very very hot.
PG: And it was on fire.
CKR: The scene picks up, you know, you get it done quickly as you start to sweat.
You can watch a video of the interview here.
Quote from Radio Times (British TV listings magazine) - May 1998 (article)
With David having decided not to return full-time to the series, the producers had to look for a new partner for Fraser. This proved as difficult as it had the first time around. Many names were suggested and auditions held, but it wasn't until Callum Keith Rennie (already becoming well-known in Canada for his roles in a number of films and TV series) was approached that the producers found their man. Like David Marciano before him, however, he was initially reluctant to take on the role. Joking during an interview published in the British TV listings magazine, Radio Times, in May 1998, he said: "I wasn't too keen to do it, but then Paul made me toss a coin for it. I lost. "
From the same photoshoot, three pics found by scriggle
ETA: added more pics from the purple couch of doom photoshoot. For completeness purpose.