SDCC 2010: SMALLVILLE Interviews with Erica Durance, John Schneider, Cassidy Freeman, Justin Hartley, Producers Brian Peterson and Kelly Souders

     July 27, 2010

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The final season of Smallville is upon us and Clark Kent is ready to grow up to become Superman. In a quick roundtable interviews for the press, actors Erica Durance, John Schneider, Cassidy Freeman and Justin Hartley were in attendance. In addition, executive producer Brian Peterson and producer Kelly Souders were on hand to provide some insights to the final season.

Some of the conversations were about how Smallville was going to handle its final farewell tour with the story arcs and rumors of appearances of certain well known characters of the show. And the show’s producers also nixed the possibilities of spin-offs since it is too early to speculate.  So hit the jump for some of the highlighted conversations from the roundtable.

In the conversation with John Schneider, who played Jonathan Kent, he said will be making appearances throughout the season especially with the first episode of the final season.

Schneider had finally realized the importance of his fatherly figure on the show.

“I really didn’t understand the impact that Clark/Jonathan had on people,” he said. “I had people come up to me who just gotten back from war that wanted to give Jonathan Kent a hug. And to say things like ‘I wish my dad was more like you are.’”

Schneider could not elaborate on the details of his appearance, because he is unsure himself on the role of the final season.

“It’s kind of a mystery to me,” he explained. “I show up where I should be on a farm. I don’t know if it is a vision. I don’t know if it is an accumulated memory and something that Clark Kent needs to hear. Or if I am really there.”

But, he was excited that he will say the famous line of “You could be the greatest hero the world has ever seen.”

As for speculation of a Green Arrow spinoff, actor Justin Hartley dismissed the idea and said he was not approached with it.

“Anything is possible and I would entertain the idea,” he said. “I haven’t been approached to it. I still have a whole another year of Smallville.”

Hartley did indicate he will actually direct an episode of Smallville.

“I am going to leave with as much information as I can,” he said excitingly. “I think I’m going to have fun with it.”

He said there would not a lot of babysitting going on and it should be enjoyable, because everyone knows what they are doing so there could be little directing.

With it being the final season, Erica Durance’s Lois Lane will finally reflect and witness the conversion of Clark Kent into Superman.

“It’s Lois’ first time that she will actually and physically get to see the powers of Clark Kent and Superman,” she said.

She said also further speculated the relationship of Cat Grant would have between Lois Lane and Clark Kent.

“I know that she is somebody who I must go up against at the Daily Planet,” she said. “I would like her to stay for a long time and to show a part of Lois that she wants to change for herself.”

Cassidy Freeman’s villain of Tess Mercer had to fill the void left by Michael Rosenbaum’s Lex Luthor for the past few years. She displayed respect and claimed challenges to establish her own identity from the show left behind of Lex Luthor.

“No one could do what Michael did. Michael took that role to a new level,” she claimed. “There is a reason why he has such a strong fan base.”

She explained further, “I knew I had to come in and be myself—not trying to be him. And try to pay homage as much I can as an actor and as a character.”

She wanted to meet actor Rosenbaum some day. She told the roundtable the story that she received a phone call from him to congratulate her addition to Smallville.

Tess Mercer will be re-introduced back in the first episode, in which her face will be partially healed. A teaser during the Comic-Con panel showed how her face was getting healed.

“I’m coming back in full effect,” she said.

The producers tried to hint on the direction of the show as it enters its final season. There are many speculations on which side characters and villains would be introduced into to the show.

And on the possibilities of actors once connected to the Superman universe making guests appearances like Dean Cain or Margot Kidder is still in discussion for the producers.

“We’ve talked a lot of different options and it’s still early in the season,” Peterson said. “We’ve considered it for sure.”

Kelly Souders added that there is no specific plans on bringing past actors back on the show right now. “We love to bring in anybody who was involved in the myth of Superman,” she said. Her dream choice would be bringing Gene Hackman on to the show.

With some hints on Lex Luthor not being permanently dead, the producers were taking considerations on how to handle the character for the final season.

“The best way to answer that is that Lex Luthor always has a backup plan. The character will be alive and well in this season,” said Peterson.

He said the door is wide open for Rosenbaum to come back for the final season.

On the idea and rumors of spinoffs from the show, Peterson concluded, “To my knowledge, there are no official spinoffs on the show right now. Obviously, Erica [Durance], Justin [Hartley] and Cassidy [Freeman] and everybody could hold their own series if they wanted.

All their characters have really grown and blossom.”

The show is still incredibly popular despite it being its final season. As it heads towards the end of the season, there will be stronger speculation of what will be spun off from the show like Xena from Hercules or Angel from Buffy. For now, let’s enjoy the transformation of Clark Kent into Superman.

Smallville will return on September 24 on The CW.

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