As we have mentioned before on Sitrep, The Sci Fi Channel/NBCU have enlisted auction company Propworx this year to catalog a massive array of BATTLESTAR GALACTICA props, costumes, and set elements, which will be sold off to fans at auctions taking place in early 2009. Propworx’s Alec Peters recently talked to us about the auction process.
If you have any other questions for Alec, leave them in the comments of this post, and he will be answering them in the next couple of weeks.
Galactica Sitrep/ProgGrrl: You are currently inventorying all the items for the auctions, correct? Have you been up in Vancouver on the set of the BSG movie, THE PLAN? I understand the film shoot just wrapped this week.
Alec Peters: Yes, we are working 12 hour days cataloging and photographing everything from props to costumes to set pieces. And while THE PLAN has just finished filming, we will be working through the end of October.
GS: I noticed that the auction site has posted a very well-shot photoset of the CIC set before and during its permanent dismantling. Sci Fi Channel exec Mark Stern said earlier this year that all the BSG main sets were digitally recorded from many angles -- potentially for use later in a “virtual” form. Do you know anything about that?
AP: Yes, there were two different digital assets produced. A high res quicktime movie and they just finished taking digital photographs in case they want to recreate the sets in CG later.
GS: Are you guys photo-documenting the dismantling of every major set from the show? I assume the rest of the series’ sets will be ready to dismantle now that THE PLAN is wrapping…(*long sigh*)
AP: Well, we took photos along the way. And as of now, all the sets are gone.
GS: Can you explain the auction process…ie, are you doing this alone? Who is making the decisions about which items go to the auction?
AP: I have a full time assistant, Joe Beaudoin, who runs the Battlestar Wiki. He is a wealth of knowledge. I also have had my photographer and his assistant working full time all this past month. NBC Universal has pretty much given us free reign to auction whatever we think fans and collectors will want. I have a good deal of experience in this space, so I know what fans and collectors want and what they have no interest in. Battlestar is unique in that so much of the show is MEANT to look like everyday stuff. So a lot of what might have been cool if it was in a Star Trek set, is just not real interesting on a Galactica set. But that is what gave the Galactica a real world, believable look. So it worked great on the show, but it may not be something that translates well into a collectible prop.
GS: As for the auctions: these are going to take place in Los Angeles during the air dates of season 4.5, correct? How many auctions are planned?
AP: There are two live auctions planned, one January 16-18 at the Pasadena Convention Center, and one in April after the show is finished, we are planning that for the Pasadena Convention Center as well. In between there will be Internet auctions every week in conjunction with the final 11 episodes.
GS: Are you going to have all the items inventoried and announced before the first auction takes place?
AP: Absolutely! There will be a great catalog out in December, which every BSG fan will want a copy of. It will be like any great auction catalog from Christie’s or Sotheby’s. Also, every single lot will be online in even more detail at our web site, www.battlestarprops.com.
GS: How will online bidders be able to participate, and compete fairly, with the buyers who show up at the physical auction site in Los Angeles?
AP: Oh yes, the online auction, which you will be able to access from our site and Scifi.com, will be integrated with the Live auction. If you bid online, you will be bidding on the same terms and directly against the live bidders!
GS: OK, if you’ll induldge me here…I’m trying to decide how much money I need to start stowing away for this once-in-a-TV-lifetime event. Can you tell us yet if any of the following items are going to be included in the auction?
- A set of Triad cards
- The painting hanging in Adama’s quarters
- The Basestar Hybrid’s tank, or any of the cylon downloading tanks
- The Cylon Basestar furniture
- The Cylon Basestar command center waterfall (umm…is there a name for that?)
- The Ruins of Kobol
- The Arrow of Apollo
- The Book of Pythia
- Six’s red dress
- Starbuck’s blue dress
- Tigh’s Ambrosia bottle
- Jake’s water bowl from New Caprica
- Romo’s glasses
- Gina’s nuke
AP: Well, the ruins of Kobol? I mean those were HUGE! So no to them. Pretty much everything else we have and will be auctioned. The only thing we don’t have yet is Jake’s bowl. We have been looking for it for a month!
And start saving your money. Galactica has a huge following worldwide, and we have already gotten inquiries from 5 countries and I expect more before it is all over. We will have items for every budget, but you better be packing some cash if you want to win Adama’s painting! That is the hottest item I think.
GS: So...just to confirm, you said every item that I listed above, except the Kobol ruins, is probably going to be in the auction?
AP: Not the waterfall either. Are you interested in that?
GS: Ha, no. I can't really afford to bid on ALL that stuff…When I get serious, it will probably be for the viper suit, the arrow, the book of Pythia, maybe the triad cards. Or Adama's painting, which I'm sure will be too costly for me. Frak it. Oh wait, there is one more thing I want to ask about - are you going to auction off any of those life-size cardboard cylon standees they used on set to stand in for the visual effects shots?
AP: Yes we should have at least one Cylon cardboard standee.
GS: Great…Thanks so much for your time, Alec.