Pic courtesy of @Chico6 on Twitter, with my thanks!
Damian Holbrook from TV Guide Magazine comes through for Smallville fans again, this time with an interview with Allison Mack, director of this week's episode!
Allison Mack Talks "Warrior," Chlollie and More!
by Damian Holbrook
February 11, 2010 05:25 PM EST
For nine seasons, Allison Mack has been one of Smallville’s most talked-about characters. Now, the adorable and engaging actress who plays Chloe Sullivan does some talking herself, about directing this week’s comic-book convention episode, being best friends with Clark Kent and where she sees ahead for Miss Sullivan’s love life.
You have been a very busy woman this season.
Yeah, it’s been probably the busiest time of my life actually. The last three months of the year were kind of insane.
I bet! Let’s talk about “Warrior.”
So, it’s your second time directing the show, Justin (Hartley, Oliver) and your bosses Kelly Souders and Brian Peterson have nothing but high praise for you…are you starting to prefer directing over acting these days?
I wouldn’t say I prefer it, no, I think it’s a very different skill. And it’s terrifying. [Laughs] But I thoroughly enjoy it and there are elements of it that are incredible. It’s allowed me an understanding of filmmaking and the storytelling process that I would never have received by just purely acting, and it’s given me a perspective and a humility that has helped me explore myself in a way I don’t think I ever would have before. That’s why I love directing. I also love understanding the elements of what it takes to put things together, coming up with the entire style, theme and look of the whole show. It’s an amazing experience.
It sounds it.
That being said, with acting, it’s nice to just go in, do your job and relax. It’s all you, all the time when you’re directing. [Laughs]
And with “Warrior,” you had a lot to deal with. Big crowds, huge set pieces…
This was a challenge in a different way. It is a much bigger episode than the last one I directed (season 8’s “Power”). There was a lot more, as far as details and people were concerned. Plus I was involved a lot more in this episode. So it was pretty intense.
How was it, directing and carrying a lot of scene work?
That was probably the most challenging part of this experience. I am really, really lucky…I work with really amazing people. My director of photography Glen Winter, my second assistant director Morgan Beggs, and my mentor—they called him my assistant, he was more like my teacher—Christopher Petry, they were so helpful, so supportive, so beautifully there for me that any time I was in front of the camera, I knew I could come back and ask them what they thought and then move on. I couldn’t have done it if I hadn’t had the support of those three amazing men.
And you also got to direct almost the whole cast, right?
I did. The only person I didn’t get to direct this time around was Cassidy (Freeman, Tess).
So I got a ton of questions from the Twitterverse. You know about your fans, right?
My fans are beautiful!
They LOVE you.
I know. They’re so great.
One question that keeps coming up is the direction Chloe’s headed in lately. Is she slipping into the dark side here?
I think Chloe is exploring alternate options for obtaining what she wants. I think she has beautiful, altruistic motivations, but I think she is looking at the idea of ‘do the ends justify the means?’ She’s pro-actively seeking ways to secure the salvation of humanity that might be different from Clark’s…and appearing less heroic than Clark’s.
And this has caused a strain on their friendship, which has people quite upset, as well. Do you think these two will ever regain that bond?
I think you’re seeing these two characters ebb and flow. They’re struggling to grow into a new type of relationship that they don’t understand yet. So it’s sort of one step forward, two steps back as they evolve…they grow apart and come together, then grow apart and come together again. But really, the whole dynamic for the two of them is ultimately that they love each other deeply. They’re family. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that they agree with what the other person is doing, nor does it mean that they feel they can trust each other any more. But I don’t think that love or familial bond will ever go away.
That’s what I have been saying all along! That this mirrors a true friendship.
Yep! It really does. And it’s neat because you have seen the characters grow up together—Tom (Welling, Clark) and I have grown up together—we really get to experience the full dimension of a friendship, which is nice.
And speaking of relationships, watching you and Justin at the end of “Roulette,” I couldn’t help but think ‘what a gorgeous couple they’d make!’
[Laughs] Ha ha!
You guys had so much chemistry in that scene and the characters both come from that same place, the other side of heroism.
Yep. Oliver offers Chloe a lot.
Will he be offering her more?
[Laughs] Their relationship definitely changes. You definitely see their dynamic expanding. In what direction, you’ll have to watch and find out. But you’ll see in “Warrrior” that there is a huge shift between the two of them. They will definitely be spending more time together.
Do you have a favorite Smallville moment?
Yes! The other day, actually, it was Justin’s birthday and we had a cake for him. So I went down to the set, it’s pouring down rain and we have these things called “fly swatters” that shield us from rain when we’re filming outside, but they also basically collect a lot of rain on top. Every now and then you have to dump all of that excess rain and there’s this huge splash of water. We were filming outside, so we had these fly swatters set up and they were filled with water, and as we were singing “Happy Birthday,” one of the crewmembers decided to empty the fly swatter…not knowing I was standing right under it. Before anyone could say anything I was covered in about a gallon of freezing cold rainwater and I just looked at Justin and went (in a little singing voice) “happy birthday to you.” [Laughs] I had to completely redo my hair and makeup, I was wet to the bone, but everyone applauded and it ended being this great moment in Smallville history.
You guys really are a family up there in Vancouver, huh?
It is. It’s rare in this business to spend more than six months with a group of people. It’s a very gypsy-like atmosphere, very nomadic, people go from project to project to project. The fact that we have been together for almost a decade? That breeds a family atmosphere. We can’t help but be close!
Do you and Erica (Durance, Lois) hang out off-camera? Do “girls night” stuff?
We talk about it a lot. [Laughs] But we’ve never actually done it. Erica and I are both incredibly busy and because of our characters, we usually have contrasting schedules. We very rarely get to work together. So unfortunately, our schedules have never aligned where we can hang out together. But we like each other very, very much!
You two do have some cool stuff together in “Persuasion,” though, right?
We totally get to see angry Chloe again, like at the prom?
You get to see Nasty Chloe!
Is there an actual fight between you two?
There isn’t a physical fight between Chloe and Lois, but there is one between Chloe and Tess. And it is wicked. It’s a really hardcore fight! [Laughs]
Sounds hot! What do you guys think of Miss Mack and everything she has to say about Smallville?
Follow Damian Holbrook on Twitter at @DamianTVGuideMg