Friday, January 27, 2012

CM_SetReport Chat Transcript for Breen Frazier 01-26-11

pagetgirl101: BREEN!!!! YOU DA

Breen Frazier (BF): French slappy chick is our bad guy for season 8 y'all.

Hannah_CM: Hi Breen, do you have a favourite episode which you have wrote? :)

BF: Was thinking about this last night. I differentiate between the scripts and what's shot. I think if you read Cradle to Grave and compared it Uncanny Valley, C2G is a better read. Right now, Unknown Subject is my favorite. When I think about the process, the word that comes to mind is "seamless." The director, the cast, the way it cut together like butter. It really was a fab experience.

avferreira: Were the songs used in the episode already on your script or were they chosen by the music department?

BF: I chose the songs. Guess how much we spent? Over $100,000. They were both written by Jim Steinman, who co-wrote Meat Loaf's Bat out of Hell. They were written for an unused rock opera about a vampire. When the rock opera didn't go anywhere, he pawned them off to Bonnie Tyler and Air Supply. But if you listen to them, you can totally hear Meat Loaf singing them.

swon: Breen, amazing episode! Paget told us that the last jet scene was supposed to be longer...can you PLEASE tell us what else was written for that scene that didn't make the episode??

BF: Paget says, "I'm having a bad day." Hotch: "Do you want to talk about it?" "No." "Do you want some time off?" "No. (BEAT) I want the old me back." Then Hotch says, "Well, she's gone. But you're still here." And Michael Lange, the director felt that the scene's high point was Prentiss saying, "Bad day." That's why you hire directors.

LornaDavenport:What would YOU like to see in the show's future? Romance? More sick and twisted unsubs?

BF: More sick and twisted UnSubs, which we don't seem to be in any danger of running out of. That's the show's bread and butter, that's what keeps 15million people tuning in week after week. The challenge for me is dig into the psychology of why they do what they do. Romance is a close fifth, though. Personally, I don't love writing romantic scenes for these characters, it's a hard tonal shift after the disembowelment scenes.

bgmbrme: are there times were it's a great read, but doesn't work when cameras start rolling??

BF: Oh heck yes. Trying to think of an example. Well, here's one from 52 Pickup. Hotch and Rossi find the UnSub's mom and we see the source of all his trauma. She says, "I need to be changed." It was so bad the first time we reshot it and it was still bad.

thetruthbetween: I LOVED the Charade shout-outs! Regina Lampert, Hamilton Bartholemew, Peter Joshua? Epic. Is that a favorite movie?

BF: It is a favorite movie and I have no idea why it sprang to mind as I was writing this script. It's a lighthearted, low-key Hitchcock rip-off, but brilliant in its own way. I think what drew me to it was that the Hamilton Bartholomew character in the movie was underplayed by Walter Matthau, who turns out to be the ultimate bad guy. I wanted to convey that sense of pulling the rug out from under you, and you can't wrong ripping off that movie. Even if all you steal are the names.

laurenreynoldsisdead: Why did you choose Hotch to comfort Prentiss, rather than JJ or another team member?

BF: There was some chatter about this when I teased it in my last chat. Fans felt that any of the characters who suffered trauma could comfort her. And considering they've all pretty much suffered trauma, it was dealer's choice. However... Hotch was the only one who would have access to her psych report. Hotch was the one who covered up her death. Hotch was the one who was knife-raped by the Reaper where Prentiss was gored by Ian Doyle. As such, it felt like a rich Hotch/Prentiss scene to write. And that's why I went that way.

HotchDAMN: How did you decide to have 2 unsubs for 7x12 and was there ever any question that Regina would have captured the "wrong" man (not HER actual rapist)?

BF: No, I wanted her to capture the right guy. I don't know why, it was just storytelling instinct. The way we broke this ep was, we figured out the UnSub story first, meaning Regina/Hamilton. What that little play was, how she caught him, how he reacted in captivity, how he turned the tables with the slut-shaming story, how they fought, and how Prentiss would have to lie to her to get her to put the gun down. Going back to the first part of your question, THAT'S why it had to be right guy. I knew that Prentiss had to lie to her to disarm Regina. But I'll tell you this, I'm never writing an episode with two UnSubs again. Because the minute you do that, you double the amount of exposition the audience has to track. Or, as my father shouted over the phone to me this morning, "It was too damn confusing!"

poucelina79: Hi Paget, I really loved last nights episode, especially the plane scenes. My Question, did you have to film that scene about Sergio a few times? I think it was hilarious! ::laugh

PB: I'm so glad you liked it. Yes, we shoot every scene many times to give the editors and director choices in editing. Sadly, the final scene in the jet with Hotch had to be cut down to keep the episode at the right length for airplay. It was a longer scene and we had a great time doing it.

bookwurn32191: Breen, do you have any advice to aspiring screenwriters?

BF: How old are you? Rough Estimate. College? Post-grad? High school? 60s?

bookwurn32191: College.

BF: Okay, good. What I mean is, you're at an exciting point in your life. If you go to film school, you will be surrounded by budding directors, directors of photography, etc. But writing is the great equalizer. If you can WRITE you can tell a story. That's the first thing you have to be able to do is communicate visually through words on a page. The screenwriting software out there is top notch. I recommend Final Draft, that's pretty much industry standard and it's really easy to use. For story structure, I am a fan of Robert McKee's "Story." Virgil Williams recommends Christopher Vogler's "The Hero's Journey." Finally, and most importantly, WRITE. Every day. IT IS A MUSCLE. One trick that I learned recently is, don't write on a computer screen. When I have 60 pages to write, and there's a blinking cursor, all I want to do is check my email and in that order. But when I write longhand something unlocks in my brain and I can get the pages done. Unfortunately, ep720 is now at 72 pages when it needs to br 55. So there's that.

cmwonderlady: Hi Breen! What's your next episode and who will be the team member on focus?

BF: It's 720. Morgan is the focus.

jillian: Would you ever consider publishing one of your scripts online for the fans?

BF: If we're allowed. ABC has weird policies about that. But if we get permission and you guys vote on your favorite, we'll be happy to put it out. I think what would be most interesting would be the first draft AND the final draft so you can see how the writing evolves.

ZoeyJzzz: I can't believe I'm asking this, but have you ever read Criminal Minds fanfiction and if you did, what was your reaction?

BF: I haven't. I don't want to get inspired.

JJHotchner: Will anyone on the team ever meet Beth?

BF: Yes, that's going to happen soon. Can’t say when but soon.

debra: Are we going to see more of Prentiss continuing to deal with the repurcussions of the Doyle arc and her reintegration throughout the season?

BF: There will be a few beats throughout the season, but nothing substantial. I don't want to say that Prentiss is hunky-dory after last night, but it's one of those things where we've mined the most dramatic potential, mirroring her emotional state against the UnSub. There are only so many episodes where one of the team members goes, "That's just like me!"

kitten0409: Please, somebody tell Breen's dad that the episode was fantastic/interesting/intriguing, anything except confusing! ;)

BF: Mom?

toloveandbelovedbyme: did you always know you wanted to be a writer, and how did you deal with it when people discouraged you?

BF: When I went to college, I wanted to be a big movie director just like all of my classmates and every transplant to Los Angeles. Then I shot my senior project and discovered how freaking hard it is to direct. I am not a visual person. I don't think in terms of light or color scheme. I think in terms of character, dilemma and conflict. When I came out here, I learned that there was exponentially more work in TV than movies. That's esp true if you want to write. Think about it, there's 10 job on every show. That's 10 writing positions. There's only one or two or four names on a feature written by credit. Once I figured that out, I decided to focus on writing TV, and this was a time when dramatic TV was exploding. From ER to Sopranos to Buffy. You could do so much more over a season than you could in two hours. Once I made the shift, I never looked back and I've been very happy ever since.

ohmyhotch: If you could meet one real life serial killer or other creeper, for inspirational purposes or otherwise, who would you like to meet?

BF: Hitler, just to get a sense of his mania, as shown in the propoganda. There's an OSS psych profile of him online that's fascinating. Manson would be good, to get a sense of how he could get control over so many people. I wonder if he could do it without the aid of mind-altering drugs. Bundy, who seems like the charmer without the LSD.

TN-1T: In your mind, did Prentiss have qualms about lying to Regina?

BF: Yeah, I think she did. But I think it was a decision she made in the moment to avoid something much worse happening -- Regina pulling the trigger and going to prison. This was something I struggled with, would Regina be able to get under her skin. To a certain extent, she would be like, "Yeah, I did it, so what?" That's why Regina figuring out Prentiss was a victim of similar trauma was the turn in the scene. That's where she gets to stick the knife in. Or, if you prefer, the wooden stake.

MrJ: Do any of the team have a secret talent that hasn't been made canon yet because it's not relevent?

BF: JJ plays the accordion. Morgan plays the jews harp. Hotch plays a double bass. Rossi sings. Reid plays the harpsichord. They're going on tour like the Partridges for Season 10.

uhmlyeah: Why the emphesis on self-contained episodes. It really stymies character development of the team.

BF: This is a complicated question. At the end of the day, we're a CBS show. If you're on CBS, this is the deal. I think there's a way you can make that more interesting to the audience though, because part of them is tuning in for the comfort food TV of it. Part of them are tuning in so they can fill in the personal stories.

emilyPOW: do you ever get nightmares due to your job

BF: Nope. Never. People think we do, but we never do. I think there's an exorcism that happens on the page that keeps you from taking it home. I will say that I'm a lot more secure, more aware of leaving doors open around the house, keep my kids on a short leash.

Amplifigaytion: Can you give us a Morgan/Reid s7 tidbit? I'm not holding my breath for a secret marriage, but I'll take what I can get.

BF: There's not a lot. It's not a creative decision, it's just one of those things. For instance, right now, Matthew is getting ready to direct, so there's not a lot of Reid/Morgan. Shoot. I wish I could think of something good but I can't. But they still like each other. The characters and the actors. We'll spin them off in Season 9.

SesameSquirrel: What kind of other background reading do you do for prepping on unsubs? (besides OSS profiles)

BF: Depends on the UnSub. We have a great researcher who pulls anything and everything we want with frightening speed. In last night's ep, I had a vague memory of reading something in the NYTimes about the age at which music imprints on us and she had that article printed out within 5 minutes. My favorite book on SK's is Happy Like Murderers by Gordon Burn about Fred and Rosemary West. Crime non-fiction is a mixed bag. There's a lot of bad stuff out there and it's easy to waste your time. But that book is one of the best.

toloveandbelovedbyme: Do you ever get inspiration for the show from your dreams?

BF: No. I'm most inspired by movies. I mentioned in my last chat that there was a Korean movie about a woman lashed to a piano via piano wire. That's where the torture came from.

itscalledastarpuzzle: is there any content that you are not allowed to write about for the show?

BF: Network frowns on incest. You have to be careful with kids. And a lot of times the network just wants a win. Even if there are no survivors, they want to see the BAU arrest or shoot the UnSub. So to have an episode where we lose, it's an uphill battle. The network will let us do it, but we have justify it in terms of story necessity. And we can only do it so many times a season.

JJHotchner: Can you tell us the title for 7x20?

BF: The Company.

laurenreynoldsisdead: Do you have any spoilers for the upcoming episodes?

BF: Keep an eye on my bad guy for 720. Virgil's writing one that's a great structure screw up.

laurenreynoldsisdead: Will we ever get a sex scene?

BF: Not a good one. Only so much you can do on CBS.

toloveandbelovedbyme: Who wrote the upcoming episode where Morgan is half naked in Garcia's apartment? Because I Love them.

BF: Bruce Zimmerman. I love him too.

Jenn: Do you ever have particular actors in mind to guest star as the unsubs/victims you write? If so, so they usually end up being the ones cast?

BF: YES. I wanted Patton Oswalt for last night's episode. That was possible because Paget is friends with him. But he was doing press for Young Adult when we shot this and was unavailable.

BreenMegan: Can we get another serial killer arc? Like Foyet?

BF: We're working on it, but it won't be as many episodes as Foyet or Ian Doyle.

prentisslovesreid: Do you like writing episodes where the victim dies and isn't rescued before they catch the unsub? Should we expect any soon?

BF: Depends on the needs of the episode. If it dictates it, then sure. I'm more interested in writing compelling scenes and if how you handle death is part of it, great. Can't think of any eps where that's going to happen, but that's just my bad memory.

devoncarrots: Breen do you think that we'll ever see an episode that has a Trans* character?

BF: TG? No. If you remember, there was some outcry about that WRT Silence of the Lambs. I don't think we'll do a TG UnSub, because I don't want to misrepresent the TG cause. If you pursue that, your issues don't overlap with the paraphilia of most UnSubs.

theadoptedbrewster: breen i love you okay

ZoeyJzzz: You said that you write every day, Breen. What do you write, other than the scripts?

BF: Really, nothing. If I'm not writing, we're in the writers room, which is exercising the same muscle.

laurenreynoldsisdead: If you could have any celebrity on CM, who would it be?

BF: Can't think of anyone great. I was thrilled with last night's ep. Jay Karnes is actually a better fit than Patton. We have a great casting gang and that's what they excel at

personthing: Did you know you have a fanpage on Facebook?

BF: NO! What is it? Is it better than Minions of Drew Goddard?

SmileyGidget:Do you enjoy the opportunity (when you get them) to meet your fans and fans of the show?!

BF: Love it. They're really nice. Appreciative. And smart. Really, really smart. They value the show and in a lot of ways, that's who we're writing for because you keep us honest.

lauraandsergio: Have you ever had really awful writers block before something huge like february sweeps is supposed to happen?

BF: Some episodes are just harder than others. I hit the wall at the end of the season because I'm tired and don't want to write another scene of a girl screaming. No terrible writers block, though. One thing that keeps that from happening is, we've broken the story in the room. So you know what you're going to write. It's just a question of the discipline to write it.

CM_fan89: Do you ever write habits of the cast members into their characters?

BF: Paget biting her nails. That became an unexpected story turn in Lauren. The bit about Prentiss faking Declan's death was a late addition to the script. We needed something in the pictures to prove it and Paget's terrible incredibly gross fingernails suddenly became a useful plot point.

SesameSquirrel: What goes on in the writers room? Spitball fights? Brainstorming? Or will you be strangled with piano wire if you tell us?

BF: A lot of trash talking, but it's mostly good-natured. There was more drinking in Season 5. But we're healthier now.

tabularossi: How do you get the voice of each character right? (phrasing, word choice, etc.)

BF: That's the journey of each writer with the show. I think Reid was easiest for me. I just write a big speech and he delivers it verbatim. A lot of times you get feedback from the actors and we take it very seriously. The drinking was a component of a VERY small writing staff. Now that we have the right number of writers, we're not nearly as stressed.

criminalmusings: Drink more!

alyssa_croft_: Have you ever aired an episode that you wish you didn't? Or wish you could have changed? If so which one?

BF: Compromising Positions was my least favorite. I just never got that script to where I wanted it to be. I think part of it is, when the UnSub loses his mind and shoots up a swingers' party, you can't really come back from that and ground it. 52 Pickup... love the character stuff in that, but the UnSub just never made sense. Also, there was a mom who pooped herself in that one.

OrkutCM: Hello Breen, hugs from Brasil...

LornaDavenport: What's your favourite line you've ever wrote in an script?

BF: Last night's ep. JJ: "And his tramp stamp probably spells out Massengil." AJ nailed it.
That's it for me, guys! Thank you so much!!!

CM_SetReport Chat Transcript for Paget Brewster 01-26-11

Paget Brewster (PB): Hey Everybody !! It's me, Paget !

swon: Paget, do you ever get freaked out by the episodes and the content?

PB: Ha, yes, I did in the beginning, I installed some high tech, fully illegal home security devices. I think now I've gotten used to the dark material, though...

pagetgirl101: What are you hoping to see in Emily's future? (PS...You're awesome!)

PB: Hmmmm. I think it would be cool if we could get someone to play my Dad. We met my mom and Gubler and I both want to get John Waters or David Lynch to play my dad. That could be fun. Or, you know.... make out with Hotch...

BreenMegan: QUESTION FOR PAGET: How did the tweeting like Shemar start?

PB: Okay. I stole that from Gubler. He started it. I just did it better.

Love_from_Wales: Matthew said in his interview that you are most like a vampire, why is that?

PB: Because Matthew and I wanted to start a bath and beauty product line called BLOODBATH where we would make red bath gels and stuff. I am a vampire, too, though, that might be why. I am not kidding about the bathworks. We almost had a meeting with Guthy Renker..

laurenreynoldsisdead: Hey Paget! Di you like playing 'Lauren Reynolds'? How was is different than playing Prentiss?

PB: I let the wig do all the work. I am lazy.

swon: Hi Paget! You were so amazing last night as always--looking flawless of course! I must ask, do you really wear the same boots everyday to the set? BTW you're awesome

PB: Thanks for all the kind words. I am you fan now. I do have the saME BOOTS. tHEY ARE MOLDED TO MY FEET NOW AND GET RESOLED EVERY FEW WEEKS AT THE MALL. tHEY ARE MORE COMFORTABLE THAN ANY OTHER SHIOES. Look, alot of caps !!

lauragazora: What was the most emotionally challenging scene/episode you've had to whilst you've been working on Criminal Minds? How do you prepare yourself for those scenes, especially where you have to cry? LOVE YOU PAGET! X

PB: The most emotional scene was in my first episode back, the first this year. Being back was overwhelming after what we all went through and reciting the FBI's oath made me lumpy in the throat every time. It was strangely profound.

Aliyah: What's your favourite thing to do after a long day of filming?

PB: Wine. And watching The Bachelor.

BreenMegan: Paget, I'm planning a bachelorette party. What's a good wine and cheese combo to put together for it?

PB: All wine and all cheese is good. Do you have a Trader Joe's? They have the best brie and Freixenet Champagne is cheap and fantastic. Go for cabernet or merlot. And cut up one pear and throw a bunch of grapes on there, you're golden.

poucelina79: Hi Paget, I really loved last nights episode, especially the plane scenes. My Question, did you have to film that scene about Sergio a few times? I think it was hilarious! ::laugh

PB: I'm so glad you liked it. Yes, we shoot every scene many times to give the editors and director choices in editing. Sadly, the final scene in the jet with Hotch had to be cut down to keep the episode at the right length for airplay. It was a longer scene and we had a great time doing it.

SmritzCM: Which cast member can you do an impression of the best?

PB: Shemar and Gubler. I can imitate Thomas imitating a guy from New Zealand, though..

ChocolateDivine: Hi Paget! I love it when Emily speaks and translates foreign languages. Can we have more of that? And what foreign language do you like speaking the best?

PB: OH< YOU lucky chocolate divine, we have a two page scene in spanish coming up. It was terrifying because I want to be perfect but I don't speak spanish. I speak french, so that's easier. I'm hoping I might get to japanese, that would be very challenging...

criminalmusings: I thought I would never hear you say "poop" on CM but my life is now made, so thanks. Who paid Emily's rent while she was gone?

PB: Who DID pay Emily's rent...? Maybe mom ? Hmm..

awwunicorns: If you could swap places and play one of the male characters on the show, who would you play and why?

PB: I would play David Rossi. Yesterday we were shooting a scene and Joe was sitting on the desk and he stopped shooting because he was holding a local cop pen. He said "Hold on a second. Rossi don't use no bic.” We waited for his Mont Blanc pen and I love that guy.

Sae: Hi, Paget! Aj said that CM girls were texting like crazy the day episode 150 aired. Can you tell us what the texts were about?

PB: I don't know. What were we saying ? I'm trying to remember. We were taking a lot of pictures> We were super happy to be all together again.

theadoptedbrewster: After "Demonology" what is your perspective of Emily's religious feelings do you think that she regained her faith after that episode or if she ever went into the church she stood in front of?

PB: I think I chose that moment to shift Emily's faith more toward a spirituality and belief in "something greater" as opposed to being a part of organized religion. I think the scars from that childhood experience tend to do that to former catholics I have known.

Shmoo: Do you hope or plan to do more comedy shows/movies at any point? I love Comedic Paget.

PB: Thanks !! I would love to do more comedy. Right now we work so hard to get these shows in the can every week that there isn’t a lot of free time to do movies, or time to guest star on other shows. I do get to do the Thrilling Adventure Hour live radio show every month so I get my comedy kicks out there. The Coronet Theatre on LA Cienega!

jillian: When are you going to be on Thrilling Adventure Hour again? You are an amazing singer.. you should sing more on it! :)

PB: February 4th !! Come on down. We just did the San Francisco Sketch Fest last week and it was great fun ! We haD Christopher Meloni and Colin Hanks!

SmritzCM: Have you ever fired a real gun before?

PB: Yes. In fact Joe and Gubler and AJ and I are going to Ojai in June to compete in a skeet shooting match with shotguns. We came in 4th last year.

mschrispoulos: Are you a cat person like Emily, or do you prefer dogs? I'm partial to dogs myself.

PB: I have always had cats and sadly, I had to help send my 14 year old Chauncey to cat heaven last month because she had jaw cancer. We were on the cover of CAT FANCY magazine so she was a star !!

dearPagetadoptme: If you could create a TV character that you'd play, what kind of character would you create?

PB: I wish I could play a french bitch in something. Like a dominatrix or life coach who slaps people. I did not put that smily face in there. I am not kidding. A french meanie.

SmileyGidget: Who has been your favourite guest star to work with?

PB: Well, I really enjoyed Judith Hoag form last nights episode. she is in real life married to Vince Grant who was our unsub in season 3, "Doubt" And Dina was a joy. I also adored Keith Carradine and Amy Madigan.

LornaDavenport: Who's the biggest prankster on set? And what's the worst prank that's been done to you? (or that you've done to someone else on set) Love from the UK! x

PB: The worst prank was when Gubler insisted he had taken a dump in my Sear's blow up pool. He had been in my house hanging with my boyfriend and so Steve ( bf) sent me a photo of the poop in the pool while I was at work. It was actually a plastic turd but he had me furious for a few hours.

BreenMegan: Your singing voice is amazing. Would you ever consider releasing an EP of new music?

PB: Ha, ha... I DO want to do that but I'm afraid it's so "creepy actor", you know ? Maybe bar standards or something funny.

Amaris: Hi from NZ. Just wondering who your favourite ever actor/actress is?

PB: Maggie Smith. And Keira Knightly, all those fantastic English ladies, Imelda Staunton, Claudie Blakely. I love those BBC shows !!

lauraandsergio: Have you ever met a fan thats just completely crazy and you want to really get away from them?

PB: All of my experiences with fans have been positive, I don't like getting fan mail from prisons showing up at my house. One lovely older lady hugged me at the market last month and mostly just held her face to my boobs for an uncomfortably long time but she seemed nice.

Sergiocushion: If you could play an unsub, what do you think their story would be?

PB: I would be a mean french chick who slaps people to death. And makes fun of their corpses. That’s terrible.

SageWhit.: Gubler gives out Goobies, but if you were to give of Brewster awards, who would get what?

PB: I would be exhausted just fabricating enough of them because we have 170 people or so who work on this show and they ALL deserve one. Everybody in every department would get one. Excepet Krishna.

Sergiocushion: Can you torture Krish some more for us? It's endlessly amusing!

PB: Sadly, Krish takes every other week off because he is a lazy piece of garbage so I'll have to wait another week. But I think this next one will be a good one..

reader2112: What episode has been your favourite?

PB: That's so hard to answer. I think the one I liked watching the most was actually Gubler's first "Mosley Lane" because I think the actors and sets and visuals were just so.. Gubler. And I love his style. I loved "Lauren" and thought Breen and Gubler did an amazing job on that but it was still a sad episode for me at the same time.

Ohh ! Guys, I have to go to Glendale to shoot a takedown scene with everybody. I'll tell them you all say hi. And now, please welcome, your favorite writer AND MINE ! Breen Frazier !!!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

CM_SetReport Twitter Chat w/Erica Messer

ECM: Hi everybody! 150th starting now!

ECM: Anybody have any ?'s

Danny_CMFan: Hi Erica! Are you on set right now?

ECM: Just got back from set a bit ago and just got out of casting for ep 7x17! All excited about 150!

RT @sheisanni­ebelle: Where do you guys get the ideas for your unsubs?

ECM: We used to get them from actual serial killers but now they're coming from our crazy writers' minds!!!

B_4BeLOVEd: will there be an episode focusing on Derek Morgan this season?

ECM: Yes! He's got some good ones coming up! Stayed tuned and we'll get Shemar in here to chat!!!

Jenn Lee Burgess: Hi Erica! Do you plan all of the episodes or come up with the ideas throughout the season?

ECM: We do a little of both -- talk about the journeys for our heroes but then come up with bad guys each week!

Kris Orr: I know it's been talked about, is CM going to be participating in ComicCon this year?

ECM: Great question! We're hoping to get a spot @ #sdcc this summer! Would you guys be into that? Show us the love & we'll try to get there

Tracey Lane: How long are your workdays?

ECM: 24 hours a day! It's like being a mom! The crew works 12-14 hours/day and writers more like 12 because we take it home with us!

ECM: What did you guys think of the jet scene?!!!

doreen britton: is there a real squad like this?

ECM: Yes but the real BAU heroes don't have a private jet!

Sarah Hott: How often do you guys get writer's block?

ECM: Writers block happens DAILY on this show. Virgil's sitting in here with it RIGHT NOW!

Vanessa L. @VanessaRossi: Will there be another Rossi-centric episode this season? And when will we see Strauss again?

ECM: Virgil's writing a Rossi centric now and Strauss will be with us again by the end of the season!

Ashley @Adorrel: Tell Virgil that we wish him good luck on getting past Writer's Block!

Tracy @awwunicorns: Besides the lovely Dean Cain, are there any upcoming guest stars you can tell us about?

ECM: Kathy Baker's in 7x16 and she's amazing! Teri Polo in 7x18!

Dragon: what is the best thing about CM fans? Happy 150! Here's to 150 more!!!

ECM: I couldn't possibly pick just ONE thing about the fans. Loyalty. Trust. Dedication. Enthusiasm. Love. Passion. U make this fun for us!

@happybrow­ngirl Sometimes I think the writers of #CriminalMinds hate women. Really. Really. Hate. Women.

ECM: 1/2 of our writing staff is women. We can only have men or women (or children) as vics. Look at this season. We don't discriminate!

Tracy @awwunicorns: What do you feel sets #CriminalMinds apart from other crime procedurals?

ECM: We ask WHY a suspect hurts people. Other shows ask HOW they did it. Our team also dominates like no other. #criminalminds

Kiera Fallon: Were there any celebrations on set of the 150th episode??

ECM: We all hugged and ate ice cream sundaes. Watch for a message from @JoeMantegna

Emily Kraft: Erica, did the writers originally write in Morgan and Garcia's flirting or did the actors add that in?

ECM: A little of both. Their off screen chemistry plays well on screen!

Celeste SofĂ­a: is KV the mastermind behind @Garcia_BAU, if not who is then? and we will get another "member of the team" on twitter?

ECM: Our beloved @rickdunkle & @Vangsness are the masterminds every week!

Shanti Fierce: Do you have a personal favorite episode or season?

ECM: Tough Q. 7x01 for many reasons. Mainly cause our team is together again!!!

@SmileyGid­get: Its Australia Day today, can us Aussies get a ­#Criminal­Minds shout out?! ;)

ECM: Hello, mates!!!!! We love Australia! And a hello to our favorite New Zealand director, Jesse Warn! #criminalminds

Silvinha: What do you think about the whole shipper thing?

ECM: First time I heard it, I had to ask what it meant! Love that everyone's got an opinion! Can't please 'em all!

Morgan Payne: Is this CM's last season??

ECM: Better not be! We've got plenty more stories to tell!!!!

ECM: Just so you know, @virgilwilliams is now avoiding writing by signing up for twitter!!!!

victoria martin: is there going to be anymore Kevin and Garcia moments?

ECM: Next new ep has G/K stuff and later in the season. Stay tuned :)

ECM: Goodnight, everybody! THANK YOU for 150 Episodes!!!!

Chat Login info

Click the above link/button to join the chat for both Paget and Breen.

Password is: sergio

***Time Change for Chat w/Paget Brewster and Breen Frazier***

The CM_SetReport Chat w/Paget Brewster, followed by Breen Frazier will now be held at 3PM PST/6PM EST. Paget will chat from 3pm-3:30PM PST and Breen will be with us from 3:30Pm-4:30PM PST.

Login info will be posted on this site 30 min prior.

Thanks for your understanding!

CM_SetReport Chat w/Paget Brewster; followed by a chat w/writer Breen Frazier

We hope u enjoyed last night’s 150th episode of #CriminalMinds - Be sure to join Paget Brewster in the @CM_SetReport chat room today @ 3:30pm PST! Then share your thoughts with #CriminalMinds writer Breen Frazier from 4 to 5pm PST.

Login info will be posted on this site 30 min prior.

Friday, January 20, 2012

CM_SetReport chat with Co-Executive Producer Sharon Lee Watson and Guest Star Jeff Newburg - 1-19-12

SLW: Welcome everyone!! SO happy to be here, Bring on the questions!

JN: Yo, everybody. Let's rock this.

midwesternmind: The blank board and Reid. An homage to "Searching for Bobby Fisher"?

SLW: Yes! Good catch. Loved that movie!

gchan_s2: Jeff, great acting on last night`s episode! Did you enjoy playing the unsub?

JN: Yes. It was a real pleasure to get stretched; to have the chance to do that much fun, weird stuff.

alex-e: Was there anything in particular that made you decide to use chess as such a major aspect of the episode, Sharon?

SLW: Chess was a good visual way to show the genius of Caleb and Harvey.

Hi Jeff! What was it like working with the CM cast and crew?

JN: It was honestly surreally great. The extent to which EVERYBODY is great at their job and a great person was inspiring. This is not hyperbole.

lmrsk: Hi Sharon, loved the episode, I love that Emily is always the one to be there for her team mates, is there a reason as to why she's always trying to help and comfort them when she's the one who needs comfort? Or is it just because is part of her character to be compassionate and empathetic?

SLW: Smart question. Watch next week's 150th episode by Breen Frazier for the answer.

JaniceKatharine: Hey Sharon! Thank for your time! I loved this episode! What do you like/dislike about your job? Hi Jeff, thank for your time as well! Good acting! What did you like/dislike about being Caleb?

SLW: I LOVE my job!! The best things are the people I work with -- the writers, actors, and crew. It feels like a real family. Can't really say I dislike anything.

JN: Going crazy is both fun and not fun. Crying and screaming for 8 hrs straight isn't "fun" per se, but it is rewarding. It's also great to play a guy who's got layers and layers.

swon: Sharon, a wonderful episode!!! I was wondering, was it your idea to have this episode a "reid-centric" episode? Or do all the writers decide at the beginning of the year which episodes will focus which characters and you guys just pick straws for who gets which episode :)

SLW: It was my idea. It seemed that an episode about geniuses had to involve Reid somehow.

LaShawna: How did you get Patricia Cornwell to cameo? Was she always part of the script, or did she come in later?

SLW: We knew Patricia was a fan of the show and we are fans of her so it seemed like a great idea to have her on. She was part of the script from the beginning.

Hi Jeff! do you know how to play chess or did you have to act that too? ;)

JN: I played pretty often as a kid, and brushed up a little for the part. But I'm no master. We actually had one on set who choreographed the match.

a-dilemma: Sharon, what usually inspires you when you write an episode? Does the story all come to you in an instant or does it build over time?

SLW: Different things inspire me -- books, movies, real-life conversations, etc. The stories usually build over time.

laurenreynoldsisdead: Hey Jeff! What attracted you to the role of Caleb?

JN: Definitely the depth. It's rare to have the chance to play a villain who's a victim who's a genius. It basically lets you use all the tools in your box, which is satisfying. And the writing was rad, S-TRAIN.

SLW: S-Train is now officially my name.

gchan_s2: Can you give us any scoop on the 150th episode that we don`t already know?

SLW: It's a twist on our usual format. Dina Meyer and Jay Karnes are fantastic in it. Oh, and we'll hear what Prentiss and Sergio have been up to.

Alexxx: Hey Jeff (: Have you ever watched the show before you were on it?

JN: Yeah, it's generally a good idea to familiarize yourself with the tone of the shows ahead of time. And personally, I've been a fan of the show's actors and writing since the beginning. So yes: many viewings.

kasparov: Sharon (or S-Train, if you prefer!), what can you tell us about A Thin Line? We've heard it's a Morgan episode; anything else you can tell us about that?

SLW: It's a really good, intense episode. We get to see what Morgan does when he's not on a case.

redmist: Jeff, who would win in a genius matchup - your character or Dr. Spencer Reid?

JN: Ummm, I think the answer to me vs. Reid lies in the cuffs on my wrists at the end, but it certainly was a blast acting with him. I got pumped when I first read the scene.

JJHotchner: Jeff, are you working on any other projects at the moment?

JN: I just directed a music video for John Isaac Watters that'll be up soon, and everyone on earth should check out his music. Also, an original TV show is in development, so fingers crossed on that. And the first episode of a web series I'm doing with my 4 yr old niece should hit this week(ish)

JJHotchner: What's in store for February sweeps? Any hints? Please?

SLW: Dean Cain (Superman!) will be in EP 713 as a troubled gambler. Episode 714, 'Closing Time' by writer extraordinaire Rick Dunkle features a badass JJ.

SLW: Forgot to say actress Kathy Baker guest stars in EP 716, 'A Family Affair.'

FineWine: This is for both of you; Was Caleb in love with Harvey? The "your soul mate is standing right before you" line seemed to us to say that.

JN: That's definitely what I was trying to hit on that line, but I think the more precise term would be "obsessed."

SLW: Yes, but not in the traditional sense. The act of killing the young boy with Harvey was like having sex for Caleb.

The_Duke_of_Santa_Monica: Sharon - I loved, loved, loved this episode! You are for sure my favorite CM writer! Can you give us any hints about future episodes you'll be writing?

SLW: Is this my husband?

SLW: If so, I'll tell you about future episodes when I get home.

kdager: When is a JN Bobblehead going to be sold on

JN: Let's you and I make it happen. Have a prototype on my desk by 9am.

midwesternmind: Why the Zodiac, S-Train? So many details of the case are so well known. Nightmare to double check, or relief to have research material?

SLW: A nightmare to double check! I probably won't be doing that again...

laurenreynoldsisdead: Jeff, since you said you watched the show before, who is your favorite character?

JN: Probably Dr Reid. I'm a card carrying Gubler fan. But it's a tight race.

kasparov: Has there been any writers' discussions yet about the two-hour finale?

SLW: Yes. People will die...

uhmlyeah: What's it like to work with a 4yr old? Is it awkward to work with a family member

JN: Well, there were multiple family members on that one, a real jamboree. When they're a 40 lb sack of sunshine, it's great. This girl acts me off the screen.

Chemist: I loved the fact that Rossi grabbed Reid’s face and kissed him on the cheeks. Was it something planed or more like something done on the spur of the moment ?

SLW: Completely spur of the moment! Vintage Mantegna right there.

kasparov: So you really won't tell us anything about your next episode? Even the title, so we have a name to throw around as we're eagerly awaiting it?

SLW: You're the first to hear the title. It's... "Heathridge Manor".

Narriel: Hi Sharon! Last night's episode was AMAZING! It's now my new favorite! Do you think there will be more cases like that one, where Reid gets to use his genius abilities to his peak?

SLW: Many thanks. I hope we get to showcase Reid's genius abilities again.

JJHotchner: Will see Henry or Jack again this season? They should go on a playdate ;)

SLW: You'll get to see together before the season is over.

Nearly40OldMan: Which season do you think is the best season for Reid, JJ and Prentiss' hair?

JN: I'll take this one, S-train. Whenever Gubler had that glorious mane of curls, I realize I'm starting to pull a Caleb on Goobs.

kasparov: We know there are Prentiss, Morgan, Hotch, and Garcia episodes upcoming. Will we see any more episodes focused on JJ, Rossi, or Reid in the back half of the season?

SLW: Yes.

a-dilemma: Jeff, was it difficult to play the unsub who is both a genius and a murderer? Did you feel conflicted in the role at all or was it more natural? You did an excellent job portraying it by the way

JN: Thanks for the kind words. Definitely challenging, but in a sense, easier when you get to do the good stuff. More exhausting, but more rewarding.

laurenreynoldsisdead: What was the funniest moment while you were shooting last nights episode?

JN: Well, while everybody was freezing cold while we shot in highland park, Gubler and I forced people to watch this web series he guested on called Clark Kent has a dream. That show is rad.

JN: It's on funny or die and Youtube

SLW: Yes they did make me watch. And it was hilarious.

SLW: Thanks so much for the fantastic questions. Look forward to next time!

JN: Thanks so much for watching and chatting, guys. It was such a pleasure to get to join the CM fam, and great to meet y'all.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Login for chat w/Sharon Lee Watson and Jeff Newburg

Click on the above box labeled "chat now" to join the CM_SetReport Chat Room.

As with previous chats, you must have java ( installed and up to date in order to participate. Once the window opens, you will be asked for a login name (your choice) and then a password. Tonight's password is:


The chat room will open @ 5:30PM Pacific Time.

CM_SetReport chats w/Writer Sharon Lee Watson and Actor Jeff Newburg

Tonight at 6PM PST, we will host a live chat with the writer of last night's episode "True Genius," Sharon Lee Watson and actor Jeff Newburg, who played Caleb Rossmore. We will post a login link for the hour long chat as well as the room password at 5:30PM PST, here at

Hope to see you there!