With The Fallen movies finally being released on DVD and a new Remy Chandler book (Where Angels Fear To Tread) hitting bookshelves not long ago, I thought it would be kind of cool to track down author Thomas E. Sniegoski about his creations. As many of you know, Sniegoski has also worked on Hellboy comics, a Buffy the Vampire Slayer novel, an Angel novel, and his own young adult series entitled The Sleeper Conspiracy. I connected with the author for my The Spectral Realm website and he shared with me his thoughts on the Fallen movies, what to expect from Remy Chandler in the future, and what else he has up his sleeve and coming up.
THE SPECTRAL REALM (TSR) – You basically started out doing comic books. One of the comics you worked on was Hellboy, who’s main character is basically a demon who doesn’t want to be evil. Then you moved on to the very successful The Fallen series, which again dealt with fallen angels and the spiritual realm in general. Now, you’ve just had your latest chapter in the Remy Chandler book series released and the lead character is once again an angel. Am I sensing a pattern here? Haha. What draws you to explore characters from the spiritual world?
TOM – Y’know, I really don’t know. I’ve always been drawn to the religious/supernatural stuff. I love superheroes, and science fiction, and action adventure, and thrillers, but the supernatural stuff is what really excites me.
TSR – Were you raised in any certain religion or church denomination?
TOM – I was raised a Roman Catholic . . . big surprise, right? HA!
TSR – The Fallen has FINALLY been released on DVD, so I want to focus on that a little bit. Tell us what the experience of having your The Fallen series adapted for film or television was like?
TOM – It was strangely surreal. I flew out to Vancouver where they filmed the first film, and I can remember driving to the set, and seeing off in the distance, this strange kind of metal rigging . . . over a certain area of the property. I had no idea what it was, figuring that maybe it had something to do with lighting or something. They were filming on a running farm, and as I approached where they were currently shooting, I saw that the rigging was set up directly over this area . . . Come to find out that this was the rigging for the wire work so that the characters portraying angels could fly. When I arrived they were shooting a battle scene with folks soaring around wielding swords and fighting. It was the most insane and exciting thing I’ve ever seen in my life . . . and if it wasn’t for me, it wouldn’t be happening. It was quite the experience.
TSR – Did you have any control or say over how the films came out?
TOM – Not really. On the first film they let me see the script, and to offer suggestions, but if I had raised a big stink they probably would have ignored me. On the next two movies I wasn’t in the loop at all . . . different folks behind the production and stuff . . . I guess they didn’t need any help from one of those pain in the butt writer guys.
TSR – What did you think of the casting? Did the casting match what you saw in your for the characters?
TOM – Mostly the cast was pretty dead on. I loved Paul Wesley as Aaron, and Tom Skerritt as Zeke and Gabriel was just perfect, as was the actress that played Vilma. Wasn’t crazy about the casting of a woman for Verchiel, but it was no big deal really. I thought they all did an awesome job.
TSR – So what did you end up thinking about the end result of the movies?
TOM – I really enjoyed them for what they were. Were they my books? Nope . . . there were some similarities, but all in all, the movies were a different animal . . . but I like them. Very enjoyable.
TSR – What (if any) message are you trying to convey with your Remy Chandler book series and Where Angels Fear To Tread in particular?
TOM – Message? Me? I’m really not much of a message guy. The Remy books are really special to me . . . they have lots of emotion which is something really different for me. I think the main theme that could be taken from the Remy books so far is that it’s really tough to be human . . . but it’s worth the fight.
TSR – Do you have a personal “religious” belief that you follow or live by?
TOM – Not really. I basically believe in being a good guy . . . don’t do anybody harm, and treat others the way you would want to be treated. That’s pretty much it . . . oh yeah, and be nice to your mother.
TSR – What project are you working on right now?
TOM – Right now I’m wrestling with the fourth Remy Chandler novel – A Hundred Words for Hate. If I can get this one right, it’ll be a good one. Lots of cool stuff happening to poor Remy here. After Remy, I’ll be tackling the third book in the original Bone novels that I’m writing for Scholastic and Cartoon Books based on Jeff Smith’s award winning comic book series, Bone. If you’re not familiar with Bone you should check it out. It’s amazing.
TSR – Is there anything you’d like to say to new readers or people who might just be getting introduced to you?
TOM – Come on in, try me on and see how I fit. I think you might enjoy the time we spend together . . . if not, oh well, I tried.
TSR – Is there anything you’d like to say to your readers in closing?
TOM – Thanks for reading my work, I really do appreciate it, and hopefully I’ll continue to entertain you for many more years to come.