Need To Know: Sasha Roiz
By Christopher Rudolph
After attending Syfy Channel's Upfront presentation event last week at New York City's Museum of Modern Art, I sat down to talk with Sasha Roiz who plays Sam Adama, the gay gangster on the Syfy Channel's hit show, Caprica, which is ending the first half of its season this Friday. We chatted about representing the gay community in the sci-fi world, his torso, and, among other things, dating Cylons.
Out: You shot the pilot episode of Caprica. Was Sam pegged to be a regular character from the very beginning?
Sasha Roiz: If the show got picked up, they said he had potential to become a recurring character, and when the show did get picked u,p they offered me a regular role. I always felt there was a lot of potential with this character.
Will Larry, your husband, play a larger role in upcoming episodes?
I can't promise that there will be a lot of me and Larry. Homosexuality on Caprica is such a nonissue, it would require a specific focus. Clearly, if a character in my position or in my line of work on another show were gay, it would cause a great deal of controversy, but here it's not really an issue, so there's no need to really explore the background. We touched upon it and displayed that it's a healthy and normal environment, and you're going to see Larry as more of a support for Sam. There's going to be a storyline where Sam questions his loyalties to his relationships all around him, including Larry.
Sam's profession would have to be straining for Larry --
Well, yeah, he's married to a mobster.
How did the producers tell you that Sam was going to be a gay character? Did they tell you during the pilot or later?
I sat down with Jane Espenson, our initial show runner, and this was after the show had been picked up, and she told me at lunch, "'By the way, Sam's gay." Which kind of threw me off because it was never mentioned before, and my impression of who this character was, the nature of his work, I couldnt really envision it, but when we spoke about it, it made more sense -- it added this great element to his character, the storyline, and to the world. So it's definitely something that I was excited about and welcomed.
Have you spoken with Ron Moore (creator and executive producer of Caprica) about the character and the couple's relationship? I know he had a gay couple on his last show, Virtuality.
I have, which ironically I was supposed to be tested for Virtuality, but they wanted to test me for this. I spoke more about it with Jane, and she said that Ron had always envisioned in his head that Sam would be gay.
You've already shot the entire season. What can we expect from the second half?
I can't talk about it to a great capacity, but you'll see that the stories are more intertwined. The storylines and various characters aren't so divided -- they really tie in and connect with one another. There will definitely be a major storyline involving the Adamas and the Greystones. It will be very unique.