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Armageddon star Jessica Steen, July 15, 1998

TVGEN: Welcome to the TVGEN/Yahoo! Chat Auditorium. Our special guest tonight is Jessica Steen, who plays astronaut Jennifer Watts in this summer's Touchstone blockbuster Armageddon. Welcome Jessica, thanks for joining us tonight.

Jessica Steen: Hello and apologies for last week's brain fart! Glad to be here!

I_Didnt_DoIt5217: Is Ben Affleck as cute in person as he is on the "big screen"?

Steen: He's no eyesore! He is all that and more!


Steen: LOL!! Well, thank you, Audrey, from the bottom of my ancient wardrobe! And I wish all my friends could hear that question, because I mostly get a lot of abuse. Because my clothes are mostly a result of their throwaways. I have clothing in my closet from grade school, and I take a lot of flak for that! So I appreciate Audrey's support.

Brien_bear: Does Jessica keep in touch with anybody from Theatre Underground at Jarvis?

Steen: Somebody is more hip to my history than I am. Brien, I need more details. I know the theater arts room at Jarvis is underground. And I definitely keep in touch with all the theater arts worms from there, but if it was given the official name Theater Underground that was definitely after my time.

__Shooter2374__: Did you find it a little intimidating working with big names such as Bruce Willis and Ben Affleck?

Steen: It wasn't intimidating because of their natures. They are approachable and friendly and funny, and I not to sound arrogant I guess I've been in the business long enough and met enough people, that if you just treat people as a person, and let your paths cross when they do and interact when the time is right, then it's not intimidating. It's a pleasure.

Possum2598: You were one of two women with any decent amount of screen time, compared to a mostly male cast who seemingly dominated the movie. Why aren't many women getting the same amount of screen time in action/adventure flicks, would you say?

Steen: From what I've gathered, action flicks are targeted to males in their early teens to early thirties, and I suppose the guys want to see the guys doing their thing.

 But there's Sigourney Weaver and Wynona Rider together in Alien Resurrection, there's Maria Pitillo in Godzilla, there are women almost always in every action flick. But women aren't GENERALLY as into action flicks as the guys I guess. But move over, I say!

TERSEL22: Jessica, do you think the Sci-Fi Channel might be interested in getting everyone back together for a final movie? Something to finish the Earth 2 story up? They just left us hanging. 

Steen: Thank you for watching! I've been asked that question a number of times, and my answer is: I would love to do it. I would be there in a heartbeat. I don't know how often the Sci-Fi Channel has done that. I do know that the fans have been pushing for it, and they should continue to do so. I agree that the story is incomplete; we were all left hanging. And some completion would be nice for everyone. But I have heard nothing of it.

Buffy_Summers1710: What was it like to appear in a film that portrays humanity in its finest hour? Did it hit close to home, making you realize that you are not immortal?

Steen: I think working on Earth 2 was a nice prologue to working on Armageddon because Earth 2 was set after the Earth became uninhabitable, and Armageddon is set before or with the threat of it becoming uninhabitable. And both times I found I enjoyed my imagination going to places where you ask yourself: How would people behave under these circumstances?

 Would we see the kinder, more cooperative side of human nature? And we take for granted on a daily basis this beautiful place we live in. And both these projects brought all that to the forefront of my brain.

__Shooter2374__: Armageddon was a very well done movie with a lot of stunts were their any "accidents" while filming?

Steen: There was one accident that occurred while they were shooting down on the oil rig. Bruce's stunt double got hit in the back of the head while wearing his hardhat by a flying piece of pipe during one of the explosions. And he was taken off the film, I think for the duration. It went right through his hardhat, and he was out cold and stitched and whiplashed and so forth.

 But overall it was run very safely. Kenny Bates, the stunt coordinator, is an expert. In fact, there's a short L.A. Times feature running out here in front of movies that he stars in. Just a side note there. So everybody was well taken care of.

Lycoe: What did you like best about making Armageddon?

Steen: I think it was the people. WOW! Travelling with such an array of fabulous men, all funny and generous -- and sexy! It just made the whole journey so much fun. All very different kinds of people, just a delicious box of chocolates! And I'd have to say the second best thing was donning that space suit.

Possum2598: What was the funniest moment that occurred on the set?

Steen: Well, we were shooting at Cape Canaveral and the Titan was taking off, and being the videographer (or vidiot as my friends call me!) I had caught a blastoff earlier in the week and got great footage. So when it was time to shoot the Titan, I was excited by the point of view and magnitude of the takeoff. However, I had six hours to kill after being wrapped, and convinced everyone else who had likewise wrapped, to stick around so they wouldn't miss a second of it.

 So Steve Busceni and Will Patten and I were killing time in the museum, touching a tiny piece of moonrock, and visiting these little pods that taught us about various NASA operations. Then the ground started to shake so violently the three of us thought we were in another earthquake. We looked at each other and realized we had missed the whole thing. By the time we had run out to the bleachers, the Titan was well on its way and the crew was having a field day at our expense.

Jessica: Paul, who is heading to the Earth 2 convention and couldn't make tonight's chat, would like to know why you have a teepee in your backyard, and what it looks like.

Steen: It's an actual Shawnee type teepee, classic and in shape and in all appearances like any you might envision. It is my guest house. And it goes aesthetically with the house I live in.

Sherriff283: Did you get to visit NASA to research your role?

Steen: I was hired once shooting had already begun. I relied heavily on the guys playing the other pilots, who had been hired earlier and who had made trips to various Air Force bases and spoken with a number of different astronauts, to relay to me what they had picked up.

 And there was a NASA technical advisor on the set, namely Joe Allen, who had been to space in '82 and '84, and who was such a great help and wonderful man, explaining and showing us everything and answering any questions we had.

Possum2598: Would you work with Jerry Bruckheimer again on another project?

Steen: LOL! Need you ask!?! If he said "Jump," I'd say "How high?!?" Actually he's a very sweet man, and absolutely. I wouldn't think a second about it.

Nang17: What inspired you to become an actress?

Steen: LOL! I don't know if it was inspiration or your basic osmosis from both my parents. I was so heavily doused in the theater world and general entertaining around my extended family's dining table and living room that there seemed to be very little option! But it has been very inspiring along the way. And I can't imagine doing anything else.

audreyguest_348d788: How old were you when you got your first movie role? Was movies the first thing you did?

Steen: My first movie was called Threshold, playing Donald Sutherland's daughter. I was in tenth grade, I think. And Mare Winningham was also in it. He was certainly a riot to work with. And I caught the bug!

Brien_bear: JCI our loyal cry is ringing clear and true ... ever go back for a Jarvis reunion?

Steen: See the Jarvis colors fly, the red, the white, the blue. See your team to victory, they'll fight and win for you. Rah, Rah. If I had known of any Jarvis reunion I would have been there with bells on, but alas I have not. If there's any way to know if there is one, to let George Cifrancis know, then I'll be there.

Morgaine23_98: Hey Jessica! This is Regina from Germany. First: Thank you for inspiring me and of course for being so wonderful! What I'd like to know is if you really enjoy all the public attention coming along with Armageddon (press, interviews, chats... ).

Steen: WIth something like Armageddon, we did a lot of publicity, of course, before the movie was all cut together. I can't say that the amount I am in the film made me feel wanted of all the publicity. It is in some ways the necessary evil of working in the business, to publicize yourself. But generally speaking I am pretty uncomfortable drawing too much attention, especially when the size of the part may not warrant it.

COTS98: Did you audition for Dax in Deep Space Nine as rumors said?

Steen: No, I'm almost positive I did not.

Weatherman_FSU: does a regular person have a chance at dating you compared to a fellow famous person?

Steen: No, my track record does not shout famous only. Certainly not; however, I'm not really dating right now. But being famous is not a prerequisite.

Galkis: Have you given any thought to buying a computer so you can be online more with all your fans?

Steen: The idea of a computer is so daunting. I had a friend confirm that once again for me today. I doubt that will happen for some time. I can't even type! Many things would have to change for me to get computer friendly. And I think my friends and family would get pretty disgruntled if I started keeping better contact with my fans than I do with them!

Spellbreaker4: I think you chatted on another service a few weeks ago. Do you think it's important for actors/actresses to reach out to their fans like this?

Steen: Umm. I don't know how important it is. It's a personal choice. I certainly like to keep in contact. I guess I have George Cifrancis to thank for putting me in touch on any level, because I certainly wasn't keeping up with the "snail mail" correspondence. I appreciate the support and the enthusiasm, and it makes me feel like I have a responsibililty. I take it seriously. George Cifrancis is the guy who started my website. My address is

Spellbreaker4: What can you tell us about the differences between acting for film and acting for TV? Do you have a preference for either medium?

Steen: It totally utterly depends on the project. It depends on the genre, on the budgets, on the people, the producers and the cast. A low budget film needs to be shot as quickly as high budget TV. No, I don't prefer one over the other, other than to say that series work is a much bigger commitment and much like a marriage, while working on films or MOW's or guest spots is more like dating. It all depends where you are in your life and your energy and your head space.

ExoticCherry: Are you really Jessica Steen or just somebody pretending to be her to attract people to this site?

Steen: LOL! Wow! I doubt I could pay anyone to pretend for 10 seconds to be me. No it's definitely me, I don't know how I could convince you of that! That's a funny question indeed! Yes, Exotic Cherry, how do I know you are who you say you are? And if you are, how did you get your name? We'll save that for next time.

 I apologize again for last week. My bronchitis and sinus infection I will blame for not being where I said I would be. I thank you all for coming to chat, and hope we can find a way to do it again soon and answer more questions then. In the mean time, I need a job, so I'll be pounding the pavement till then!

TVGEN: Thanks for joining us tonight, Jessica. We're glad you are feeling better. And, we'll look forward to chatting again with you in the future.

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Last update: November 1, 2000 3:24 AM