Press junkets can tend to be a drag. Having said that, we were particularly excited to get to interview Dr. Ronald Chevalier, most notable for his extensive corpus of stately science fiction novels. Chevalier was in Austin for the premiere of Gentlemen Broncos at Fantastic Fest, where actor Jemaine Clement portrays him.
Chris Tilly from IGN UK and I teamed up during a chat outside to talk with Chevalier about the film, the state of modern video simulations and the joys of science fiction.
Adam Sweeney: Can you give me three items that I could write a book about?
[In that deep, faux-British accent] Wellll….The conflict, the deep inner conflict between human and robot has always been a fascinating problem and one I’ve explored in forty-three novels. I still don’t think I’ve solved that conflict.
Chris Tilly: What are your favorite sci-fi films, Doctor?
Well, as you probably know, I abhor cinema. I loathe it. I wish I could enjoy it. My favorite cinema would be anything featuring the wonderful Jane Seymour. I originally chose her to play Gorgana, the Cyborg Queen. She turned it down because of her commitments to “Dr. Quinn” at the time. I won’t allow it to be made until she has agreed to do the part.
AS: Have you heard of any rumors of Kevin James being the lead in your next film, Bisontennial?
Who is this Kevin James?
AS: Paul Blart.
I am sorry. I do not step inside the multiplex.
CT: Do you play video games at all?
I don’t think of them as video games. I think of them as simulators. And, yes, I have been in a few simulations. Do you know Geo Defense on iPod? That is one I recommend. You defend a base of lives and you have laser types to protect bases.
AS: Speaking of saving lives, you’re a doctor…
I am an honorary doctor. I got my doctorate from a university I started online.
AS: Have you considered going into the medical field to cure the masses?
[Scoffs] Again, I harken back to the cyborg field. The medical practice would be helped with robotic body parts, particularly noses. Robotic noses.
AS: It’s an important science.
It’s an important sense! I dedicate whole paragraphs to the particular fragrance of a character.
AS: If you came up for science fiction nicknames for us, what would they be?
Chris Tilly would be…Chris Till-odious. And you are?
AS: Adam Sweeney.
I would call you The Proton Kid.
Be sure to check out our interview with Jemaine Clement.