Seth MacFarlane finds more challenges aboard ‘The Orville’

Fox sci-fi show’s star and creator likes to change up the tone

Seth MacFarlane of ‘The Orville’ Thursday on Fox

Q: Did having more time to work on Season 2 of “The Orville” before it premiered help?

A: The effects work, the time for the composers to write the score for the orchestra, all of the time to put together the action sequences and the special-effects sequences … it’s about twice the work that you do on a normal hour-long show about lawyers or cops.

There are things you learn every season about how to make your job easier. We learned a lot doing Season 1, and we learned even more doing Season 2. If there is a Season 3, that will be an opportunity to really streamline our process, but there are certain things where you’re just bound by the reality of time and the physical laws of the universe. It takes the time that it takes.

Q: What did you think about the audience’s reaction to “The Orville’s” first season?

A: It was really exciting to see such a positive response from the viewers, and I think what they were reacting to was the same thing I was setting out to accomplish. There are a lot of great streaming shows, but I feel like almost every hour-long show on television – except for the procedurals — is serialized. It’s a soap opera, and the art of episodic storytelling is kind of gone in that format.

It used to be that the story dictated the tone, and I missed that. ”Star Trek” had episodes that were very cerebral and dark, then it had other episodes that were flat-out comedies. There’s not one consistent tone in real life. You have a great day, then maybe you have a day when someone passes away and you feel completely different. That’s how life works, and there’s no reason that episodic storytelling shouldn’t work the same way.

Jay Bobbin

Jay Bobbin

Jay Bobbin has decades of experience covering the television and movie businesses, winning Tribune Media Services’ Crown Jewel Award in 2008 for his performance in the company. Over those many years of interviewing and writing, he has spoken with everyone from Robert De Niro and John Travolta to Paul McCartney and Tony Bennett … from Meryl Streep and Julie Andrews to Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood.

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