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Monday, February 11, 2019

Manifest Interview: Matt Long on Zeke's Relationship with Michaela, Jared, Cal and More!

Manifest took an unexpected turn when Cal (Jack Messina) followed a calling and saved a missing man's life in the wilderness. This mysterious man, Zeke (Matt Long) lost time just like the passengers on Montego Air Flight 828 and added to the overall mystery about the callings, what they mean and why people have lost time. Will Zeke's integration into the Stone family disrupt their lives, help them solve the mystery, or a bit of both?

TV Diehard spoke with Matt Long to get answers about what's coming up on the final two episodes of Manifest Season 1, including about Zeke's relationship with Michaela,  the reunion with his family, his introduction to Jared, the wolf calling, the special bond with Cal, and a tease of the finale.

When Zeke and Michaela first meet, they had some skepticism of each other. It seems that they are starting to build some trust between them. Is that the direction they're going? Are they starting to really trust and rely on each other? 

Long: Yes. Yeah. I mean if you think about it for Zeke, Michaela is sort of the only thing he has in the world right now and you'll see more about that in the next episode. That answer will make a little more sense. But he's been gone for a year. He's estranged from his family. So when you've been gone for a year and everyone thinks you're just disappeared, or your dead or whatever, you can't just show up and then get back in to all your friends' lives necessarily. There's already trust issues because of his previous behavior in his past with his addiction issues. So he looks to her now because of that stuff, but also because of his experience in the cave having a picture of her, latching onto that, and using this image of this girl he didn't even know. There's sort of a reason and a will to continue to live under those circumstances. 

For Michaela, I think she relates to Zeke because we both had the shared callings, we've had similar experiences in the past with my sister and with her best friend in the car accident, the guilt that comes with the shame that may come with that. And also that like I said the shared experiences the callings that she doesn't have with Jared. And I guess Zeke would obviously just be understanding of those things that she wouldn't have to explain. They also went on this journey together. You know she helped me overcome or deal with this huge hurdle that I was trying to deal with when I got stuck in a cave. And that brings two people close together. And she went on the journey with me so it brings her closer to me in my eyes and also me closer to her in her eyes I would think.

You mentioned that that Zeke's going to reach out to his family. Can you preview a little bit of what what that looks like?

Long: He makes a decision on his own to do something, but he has good intentions, but the thing that he tries to do get him into some trouble. He doesn't go about it the right way.

Zeke and Jared are going to meet and are not going to necessarily get along. What's the dynamic between the two of them? What's the struggle look like?

Long: When he meets Jared, he doesn't know who the guy is because Michaela's never told him anything, but immediately Jared is hostile and you'll see that in the next episode. I don't know what the world's going on but right after that I ask Ben and Ben tells me that they used to be engaged. So obviously, Zeke gets the message that there's all kinds of history there. Jared doesn't trust Zeke because he's mysterious guy. He just showed up out of nowhere suddenly everyone's trusting him. I also think he has this air of mystery about him and Jared's a cop and he sees a lot of people that maybe have the wrong intentions or something. So he's always, he maybe is always questioning people. And then I think he also has some jealousy because Michaela was gone for this long period time when she was in the mountains and going to the cabin in the mountains with me. And he was questioning what where are you what's going on. And she never really told him what was happening. Then she comes back and tells him that she was with me. That obviously raises all kinds of questions and also creates some jealousy on his part. Plus Michaela and I both have callings and he doesn't have them, so he feels left out of that sort of experience. He starts to do some digging on Zeke and he finds out some things. 

Oooh. A mysterious background?

Long: Yeah, a bit. [laughs] It's all a bit mysterious because we don't know anything really. 

In last week's episode Cal and Zeke both were having the wolf calling and James Griffin gets pulled out of the river. How does Zeke have any kind of draw to James Griffin or involvement in what happens next?

Long: You'll find out a lot more about James Griffin in the next episode. A lot more. The only connection I could tell you that Zeke has to him really is the curiosity of who this guy is and the fact that when you when you see the next episode that something similar happened to this guy. So, as they all feel. Everybody who was on 828 as well and everybody on the show has questions about him because he sort of skipped time. 

In last week's episode one of my favorite parts was when Zeke was talking to Cal and trying to reassure him that he wasn't creating these futures. In these last to episodes, do Zeke and Cal build a relationship? 

Long: Yeah. I think Zeke comes to realize that Cal is also somebody that he takes some solace in or feels some warmth from because because Cal drew pictures of him as we saw in the last episode. There's something about Cal that's special and I think Zeke realizes that. And he also appreciate the fact that Cal trusts Zeke and that means a lot to Zeke.

Were there things that shocked you in the Manifest Season 1 Finale?

Long: Yeah for sure. Multiple things. Things that don't have to do with me that happen to other characters, things that have to do with all of us, and things that I'm directly involved in. A lot of stuff that happened there. There are some big answers given, but I feel like with those answers come some huge questions, as well as, some huge problems. 

Manifest airs Mondays on NBC.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Riverdale Cast on Jelly Bean and Gladys Jones' Arrival

Jelly Bean is coming! Jelly Bean is coming! And, Jughead's mother, Gladys Jones too!

Gina Gershon (Gladys) and Trinity Likins (Jelly Bean) will make their first appearance on Riverdale Season 3 Episode 8, “Chapter Forty-Three: Outbreak." Jughead (Cole Sprouse) and Archie (KJ Apa) make their way to Toledo looking for a safe haven, but what they find may not be what they expect. 

The family reunion is very telling, Sprouse teases, "It's great. I think for me it, it's nice to have a little more background on Jughead's character and his family life and a lore that has sort of been hinted at since season one really, and kind of loose ends that—that without saying too much—do get addressed and do get talked about."

Archie's not unfamiliar with them either, "They have a relationship, but it was a long time ago, like when Archie was maybe seven or eight years old. And even then, they probably didn't have that much face time," Apa said. "I think Archie is almost as familiar with Jughead's mom as Jughead is, almost. There's some fun stuff coming out with that."

Expect the unexpected when it comes to Gladys, Skeet Ulrich (FP Jones) teases, "The reunion is certainly not how he would have wanted it or not what he would've wanted, but I, but I think she is just, just like he was in the first season, just such a wildcard. You just don't know what's coming."

Riverdale airs Wednesday on the CW.

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Elseworlds Crossover: Stephen Amell and Grant Gustin on Their Superhero Suit Swap

Wait, what? Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) is the Flash and Barry Allen (Grant Gustin) is the Green Arrow? Unless you've been avoiding everything "Elseworlds" related, you know by now that the 2018 Arrowverse crossover involves a body-swapping situation of some sort. 

Last month, I spoke with Amell and Gustin about their roles in this year's sure-to-be epic crossover. Which suit do you think is more comfortable? I was surprised.

It's not a total personality swap though, "[Barry's Green Arrow] has my learned abilities, and I have his superpowers," Amell teased. "There are elements of each other’s personality that each of us have to embrace in order to be successful at the mission that’s in front of us."

Meanwhile, this new Oliver Queen may be more Barry than expected, "My Oliver Queen is still a little more animated than [Stephen Amell's] Oliver Queen. I'm also very aware that I'm Oliver Queen, I wasn't really playing Oliver Queen."

Check out the video interviews below for more on the crossover.

Stephen Amell Interview

Grant Gustin Interview

The Elseworlds crossover begins when The Flash airs on a special night, Sunday, December 9 on The CW.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

The Flash Interview: Tom Cavanaugh on Directing the 100th Episode

It's less than a week until the 2018 Arrowverse crossover, "Elseworlds," airs and The Flash leads into that sure-to-be epic event with their own special episode. The Flash Season 5 Episode 8, "What's Past is Prologue," is the 100th episode of the series. 

With Team Flash struggling to stop Cicada, Team Flash does the thing they said they would never do again-- mess with the timeline. Barry and Nora head back into time in order to get materials they believe will help them stop Cicada, while not interfering with the timeline. Hmm... wonder how that will work?!?

On The Flash 100th episode red carpet, I spoke with Tom Cavanaugh about directing the monumental episode. Not only does Cavanaugh direct "What's Past is Prologue," but he also acts in the hour in multiple roles. 

When discussing the plans for the episode, the writers thought he would want to take a back seat in the episode to focus on directing, though Cavanaugh didn't want that at all. He told them, "I don't want you to write me light."

Check out more in this video clip

The Flash airs Tuesdays on The CW.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Supernatural Interview: Jensen Ackles Previews Dean and Jack’s Baby Joy Ride

No one drives Baby other than Dean, right? Well, Sam has driven Baby on occasion, Bobby has too, and of course, John Winchester has taken the wheel. But... Baby is literally Dean's baby and he treats the car as one. On Supernatural Season 14 Episode 7, "Unhuman Nature," Dean takes Jack out on a joy ride. The shocker: The inexperienced Jack gets to drive. He drives Baby!

Earlier this month, I spoke with Jensen Ackles on Supernatural's 300th Episode Party red carpet about Dean's relationship with Jack and their unexpected bonding. It took a while for Dean to get "onboard" with Jack, but they started to bond in the previous episode, "Optimism."

Check out the video interview clip: 

In this week's "Unhuman Nature," Ackles teases, "I think we see in that
episode can finally come around being like you know what I'm in a real ass. It's time I made a few wrongs into rights and so it's kind of it's kind of a nice olive branch. ... It's about the biggest one Dean has to give."

"Unhuman Nature" Trailer previewing the joy ride!

Supernatural airs Thursdays at 8/7c on the CW

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Arrow Interview: Stephen Amell on Post-Prison Oliver, What's Next for Olicity and More!

Oliver is out of prison. Finally. And it was worth the wait. Those fight scenes... WOW! "The Slabside Redemption" did not disappoint.

If I placed a bet on which Arrow episode Oliver would be freed, I don't think it would have been Episode 7. Oliver was locked up long enough for it to change him permanently. His imprisonment and ultimate freedom came at a high cost, and one that will have lingering effects on his philosophy going forward, relationship with Felicity, and even his appearance.

Earlier this month, I was in Vancouver with a group of reporters and we spoke with Stephen Amell (Oliver Queen/Green Arrow) about what's next for Oliver after all that he's been through. The changes will be apparent immediately, "The first time that you see Oliver, we came up with a really interesting way I think of showing what prison life did to him without really bashing people over the head with it," Amell teases.

Watch the Stephen Amell interview

While imprisoned, Oliver's head literally was messed with through shock therapy and psychological torture. This manipulation did alter his way of thinking, "It definitely teaches him something, and it’s addressed, I think, in the first episode after he leaves prison," Amell said, "and sort of what his new mantra is going to be, if and when, he puts the suit back on."

Amell didn't confirm he'd be donning the Green Arrow suit again soon, but he will have to deal with the New Green Arrow, "[He] runs into the New Green Arrow’s exploits pretty quickly. But coming out of prison, he gets asked that specific question very early on like, 'What are you going to do?' and he says, 'I’m going to try and do what you guys did, which is just find a different way to help the city,'" Amell revealed.

What will Oliver's new mantra be? How will he help the city? Amell teases, "We come up with that idea pretty quickly, but I think one of the fun things is it’s not Oliver who comes up with it."

This new Oliver Queen will have to find his new place in Star City, while also dealing with a new Felicity. While she wanted Diaz dead, Oliver left their tormentor alive in prison. Amell said that decision won't "influence" their relationship, but "it's going to have an incredibly impactful moment on another person that he’s very close with." Hmm... wonder who that will be?

The relationship between Oliver and Felicity won't be without challenges "I learn that a lot of the stuff that Diaz was saying about Felicity is true, and I thought the way that we worked it out – and we do work it out pretty quickly. We come to an understanding that nothing’s ever going to be perfect ... But nothing’s ever going to be perfect or normal about our relationship, and I think that the sooner that they move on with their lives."

Oliver returns to his friends, family and life in Arrow Season 7 Episode 8, "Unmasked," airing Monday, December 3, 2018 on The CW.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Deception Finale Interview: EP Chris Fedak on Final Piece of the Puzzle, Cameron and Kay, and More!

The day has come for the Deception series finale. Even though the series wasn't renewed for Season 2, the dedicated audience will be rewarded with answers to the most burning questions of the season surrounding the Mystery Woman, her plan and her connection to the Black family.

I spoke with the show's creator, Chris Fedak, to find out more about the finale. Read on for edited excerpts from our conversation. While the finale answers many of the show's mysteries, it does end with a bit of a cliffhanger, so come back after the episode airs for more from Fedak about what it all means!

What's coming up in the finale?

The way I look at it is the finale is like a combination of everything. We have a culmination in regards to the Mystery Woman, and what's she after, and all of that comes to a head in our two-part season finale. ... We had all of these mythology parts of the story this year regarding the pieces of the puzzle that the Mystery Woman's been after and so we focused on that in our first hour. And, then in the second hour, we very much get into the emotional connection between our characters, and how it all twists back around, and of course there's a very elaborate deception. 

We saw the finale definitely as a two-part thing. We were going to have one part delving into the mystery, kind of dusty box of our past, and Sebastian Black, and the Sebastian Black family, and magic. And a thriller that could happen right here and now in New York City. We wanted to do it all, so we decided to jam pack the finale with a lot of story that we really wanted the audience to see and to payoff all the things we've been setting over the season.

What about Sebastian Black?

A lot of the things we've stoked this season are answered and addressed in the finale. We're going to have flashbacks back to their father. We're going to explore a lot of things we set up in Episode 8 about Cameron's past, as well as, what we did when we went to Corvus Vale and realized that Sebastian Black had built Raven Hall. I think those are all things that will come out in the season finale and you'll get a much better perspective on that whole story. We do have an FBI case in both hours of the finale, but we also explore that mythology. You're going to meet their father and you are going to learn a lot more about them.

At the end of last week's episode, the Mystery Woman seems to have won and gets what she wants when she takes the Lynx diamond, what is the importance of the Lynx diamond and what she's collecting?

She has won. She's gotten all the pieces of the puzzle that she needs, but going into our finale she's not quite done with Cameron and Jonathan yet. She still needs Jonathan for the final piece of the puzzle, she still needs Cameron to help her to get the piece, and what we'll realize is that the final piece, the place where it's all going to, is much closer to home than anyone could realize. The target is Cameron. The target is Jonathan. She's gotten all the pieces of the puzzle, now she needs the person to turn the key.

The relationship between Cameron and Kay has developed as throughout the season. Where do they stand as we go into the finale?

This is a relationship which has evolved. It started off as partners and it's turned into something a little bit more. I think that they are finding that they have feelings for each other. Episode 111 gave us an opportunity to explore Kay's past and where's she's going in the future, and also the fact that Cameron has feelings for her. Even though, we're still in that zone where they haven't exactly said those words aloud, there is a relationship beginning to blossom. It's a kind of precious moment were it could go left or right. There could be something here. It could also fall apart. And that's where all the crazy excitement and perilousness is right in front of us in [the finale]. The other part of our finale, we not only wanted to answer the mythology questions, and Jonathan and why he was chosen, and what's going on with the Mystery Woman, but we also wanted to bring the Cameron and Kay relationship to a head and really make it emotional.

Up until this point, Jonathan has been trusting Cameron to get him out of prison, what's their relationship at this point?

I think Jonathan's been frustrated. You have a guy who's plan was to break out and he's relied on his brother, and helped his brother, and he's gone out into the world, and they've gotten close on this case, but he's definitely at a place where's he's frustrated and trapped in this prison and maybe his brother-- and maybe this isn't going to work out. There's the tension and the tension is also building is that realization that Cameron had a choice at one point to essentially work within this room and help Jonathan get out and he didn't do that. He could have betrayed Kay. You have this tension that we're going to explore as we head into our finale.

Deception airs Sunday night on ABC.