Jason Dohring Teases the VERONICA MARS Movie and More!
“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” This quote by Eleanor Roosevelt was the greeting on Logan Echolls’ (Jason Dohring) cell voicemail in Season One, Episode 15 of the series Veronica Mars. To some extent, it mirrors the reality of a dream a long time in coming for series fans – the release of a Veronica Mars motion picture.
When Dohring and I spoke about the upcoming film, he filled me in on some of the work that took place behind the scenes to get this project off the ground.
A Fan’s Journey
“We shot the show for three years, from 2004 to 2007,” Dohring began. “We sort of thought we were gonna make it for a fourth season, and then we found out we weren’t. We sort of left our stories undecided, especially for those who were on the journey with the show. Things were sort of unresolved. I think the fans started pulling for a movie almost right away after the show was clearly not coming back. They wanted a wrap-up to those storylines. We had been gearing up for a fundraiser for about a year.
“After the series ended, I had back-to-back projects, like Moonlight (on CBS), where I played a 400 year-old vampire, which was really cool. I also got to do some cool work with HBO (on a comedy called Washingtonienne). With all our schedules, we just didn’t really know if this would happen. Eventually, Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars) and Rob (Thomas, creator of Veronica Mars) went to Kickstarter as sort of a fundraiser to get the movie going. Warner Brothers had declined to make the film at that point. But, when the video hit on Kickstarter, it went viral through the halls of the studio. Texts started to roll in almost immediately. I think the video hit around 11 in the morning. By 11:30, 750,000 texts had rolled in. We were going for a goal of 1 million and, within 24 hours, we were up to 2.2 million. We got 5.7 million in 30 days. So, we got the green light for the movie.
“It was also really cool, cos we got to shoot in L.A. On our show, we sort of had a beach community type feel, so that fit in with L.A. This is a project that you want to be good, especially for the fans. This movie was made for the fans. And, it’s a plus that our backers really care about the movie as well.”
Veronica Mars, the series, did indeed end with certain storylines dangling. When we next see Bell in the iconic role, “she’s gotten out of the private detective work, and she gets a call from Logan. He’s been arrested for the murder of his pop-star girlfriend, a Katy Perry type. Veronica hasn’t taken a case in 10 years, but she comes to his rescue.”
So, how difficult was it for Dohring to get back into character? He confessed, “It was very unique. There was nothing I had to learn to make it ‘real.’ We lived with these characters for three years. Basically, it felt like it did back then. I started feeling all those emotions again. It’s very rare that you get the chance to come back to something like that.
“I mean, obviously Logan went through a lot during the course of the series. He had a very tough family life. He was also involved in a great love story. He lost a lot of people in his life. His life was a bit of a downer. But, when the film geared up, I was pleased to hear that he had decided to do at least something with his life. The way he introduces his storyline is a bit different. But, you see the same wit and charm that he did so well in the series.”
TV Guest Spots
Though shooting Veronica Mars was a huge accomplishment for Dohring, he has been involved with other projects. In ABC-TV’s Motive, he stars in Episode Six “Bad Blonde” airing April 10. Of this guest spot, he said, “It was really cool. I got to work with this great actor named Richard Keats. He’s a really sharp guy. Sometimes you’re willing to work that much harder when you have someone like that working with you. In the episode, I was one of a duo, and Richard used a French term to describe us – deux corps, un seul esprit, I think – two bodies, one mind.”
Being a Moonlight fan, I had to ask Dohring if he had any plans to perhaps re-team with Alex O’Loughlin (McGarrett, Hawaii Five-0) in a guest spot on the latter’s current CBS series. Dohring said, “I don’t know, man. I talk to him occasionally to see how he’s doing. If you know Alex, you know he’s like the best guy in the world, so cool, down to earth, all that sort of stuff. He smokes cigars, which I like. I’d love to just hang with him. He’s very craft minded, which I appreciate. We got along well in that respect, so obviously I’d love to work with him again. He’s one of the nicest guys I’ve ever met.”
Though Dohring has no plans to star in another TV series at the moment, he wouldn’t mind doing it again. He said, “It’s a good place to be. If a top film came along, obviously I’d like to do that, but to be able to play the same character for so long, with a new chapter every week, and work with the writers to make your own version of that character – that whole creative process – would also be great.”
Also set for a 2014 release is The Squeeze, a true and intriguing “Great-Gatsby” story about a high school all-star golfer, gambling, and the Mafia. The film, shot in South Carolina and Las Vegas, stars Dohring alongside Jeremy Sumpter (Friday Night Lights).
Dohring’s been busy for certain, but be sure to catch him in Veronica Mars, to be released to AMC Theatres on March 14. For a complete list of nationwide theatre locations and to find tickets for this big release, please visit AMC’s website!