IGN TV: So few shows last ten seasons and 200 episodes. What do you think is the secret to Smallville's success?
Tom Welling: Hard work, dedication and fans. I think those are the elements. That's why we're here tonight.
IGN: As an actor, I imagine it must be pretty amazing to play a character for this length of time and get to show him developing and evolving. Do you ever look back at Season 1 and see how much you've changed?
Welling: It's amusing for me to look back at some of the earlier episodes. I mean, I'm a completely different person, physically and mentally. The times when I catch an old episode, or maybe even put one on as reference for something we're doing now, I can't help but be a little surprised. "Look at that kid! He doesn't know what the hell he's doing!" And that's Clark and me. So I've been able to hopefully grow along with Clark. It's been a good journey for both of us!
IGN: In the season premiere, we saw Clark get closer than ever to his destiny – he nearly puts on the suit. What more do you think he needs to do to be ready?
Welling: Well I think what Clark's going to be dealing with is him being in his own way. I think it's an issue and a dilemma a lot of people are familiar with or at least can relate to, where a lot of times, we're in our own way and preventing ourselves from moving forward with our lives. Clark has to deal with that. He's got everything going for him. Why doesn't he just put it on? And I think that's what he's trying to figure out for himself.
IGN: Should we expect to see Lois keeping it to herself that she knows Clark's secret for awhile?
Welling: I think so. Clark doesn't know she knows, so it adds for good drama I think.
IGN: Obviously a lot of people would love to see Lex Luthor again before the end of the series…
Welling: I would! I definitely do!
IGN: Have you talked to Michael [Rosenbaum] about it?
Welling: I text him all the time. I'm directing an episode right now and he was like, "Hey, what are you doing?" I go, "Directing. You should be in this episode!" He's like, "Anything for you." I'm like, "Ah, go to the airport!"
We try! We love him. We can't wait to see him. Our fingers are crossed.
IGN: Can you talk about Clark facing off with Darkseid this season and where that may lead?
Welling: I don't know what the end game is. I know he'll have to face it at some point. It's a huge villain because it's not necessarily something you can beat up or grab or throw or fight. It's something that is deep in the psyche that affects people on a level where they can't just beat it up or be stronger. It's going to be a mental and physical challenge at the same time.
Read the entire interview, including quotes from Brian Peterson, Kelly Souders, and Peter Roth, at IGN HERE.
ETA: Matt Mitovich has posted a wonderful article about Smallville's 200th episode at Fancast, with some fascinating details about how it all started from Peter Roth and David Nutter, and these (spoilery) thoughts from Tom Welling about what we'll see tomorrow night:
So momentous and resonant is Episode 200 that Welling calls it one of favorites to date. “Clark is shown the past, the future and the present, as Brainiac tries to give him perspective on where he is and where he needs to go,” the actor previews. “It was a good reason for Clark to reflect … and think about what’s to come.”
Read the entire article, which also includes quotes from Erica Durance, Allison Mack, Brian Peterson, and Kelly Souders, at Fancast HERE.