If there is any truth to the old adage that you only get one chance to make a good first impression. Consider Misha Collins’ mission accomplished.
As Castiel, an Angel sent down from above to aid Sam and Dean in their fight against evil, Misha Collins managed to the impossible. Sweep the fiercely protective Winchester Fangirls off their feet. Which is exactly what I congratulated him on when I had the opportunity to chat with the actor over the phone yesterday.
I believe congratulations are in order. Your appearance on Thursday’s SUPERNATURAL season premiere left quite the impression on the fandom.
Misha Collins: Really? I thought this was par for the course.
Far from it. [Just ask Katie Cassidy and Lauren Cohan]
Well that’s very nice to hear. And I guess it makes it a little nicer knowing that fans aren’t in love with everyone who appears on the show.
Have you taken the time to Google yourself and see for what the fan reaction has been like?
Friends have emailed me links to things but I haven’t really sat down and found the time. But having done a few interviews today, the reaction has seemed positive.
How did you find your way onto SUPERNATURAL?
Originally I auditioned for the role of a demon. I thought I did a great demon, really snarky and nasty. But when I finished reading Eric Kripke [SUPERNATURAL showrunner] said, “Wait, we have somewhat of an enthusiastic fan-base and we’re trying to keep it a secret that we’re introducing an angel on the show. So you’re not a demon, you’re an angel. Can you do it again with more of a quality of innocence and curiosity about how it is these humans behave.” And it was that naiveté about human beings in general that really informed how I play Castiel.
How familiar were you with the show before you were cast?
I’m not a big watcher of television in general, but I had seen a couple of episodes and thought it was really good. Of course now I’ve caught up and am definitely watching the episodes I’m in!
Was it hard joining an established show three seasons in. Having visited the set myself, I know how tight Jared and Jensen are.
It’s not so hard to step into a cast, rather it’s the whole crew. They’re one hundred people who have spent seventy-plus hours a week with each other for the past three years and you’re the new kid at school. Normally it feels a bit tricky but they’ve really made a concerted effort at SUPERNATURAL to really welcome me in a very warm way. It was really much easier than everything I’ve ever done in terms of getting to know everybody and getting comfortable.
I would be lynched by the fandom if I neglected to ask what it’s like to work with Jared and Jensen?
Jared and Jensen are both great to work with, really relaxed and funny on the set. I’ve heard that they’re really into pranks…
That’s what I’ve heard as well. Have you fallen victim to any pranks on set yet?
Nothing yet, which kind of hurts my feelings and has me thinking that they don’t like me!
Or, they’re in the process of planning something really ‘special’ for you.
Maybe I should consider a pre-emptive Bush doctrine kind of first strike.
Oh sure, those always go really well! Are you prepared for the fandom’s reaction? Are you ready for random girls to accost you on the street?
A few random girls have already come up to me. The enthusiasm that I’ve been met with is something new and not something I’m really prepared for. So far it’s fun albeit kind of strange. I guess it’s a hazard of being an actor. But actors chase that notoriety and to shun it when it comes would be in bad taste. So I’m going to embrace it.
TV stardom truly is a mixed blessing. I mean, how famous is to famous? Do you really want to make it to the level of ‘FRIENDS’ where you personal life becomes tabloid fodder?
Yeah there is something really nice about anonymity in life, to be able to walk down the street and just be a nobody. But I think because I live in LA, everybody is used to seeing people that they see on television. So actors don’t get accosted that much. Unless you’re Paris Hilton, but she brings it on herself.
Completely agree. But back to your character if I may. How much do you know about Castiel?
All I know is what I’ve made up and what has been in the script. I don’t have much backstory beyond that. I know that this is the first time that angels have come down to earth in 2000 years and that the Army’s of Hell are on the move which is why a higher power has deemed it necessary to send angels to earth to help fight the good fight. Angels have been around for a really long time, they’ve seen it all. They were around during the Spanish Inquisition and watching all of that happen. Not actually present for it but watching from above. They’ve seen all of human society formed for thousands of years so there is a certain knowledge and wisdom that Castiel brings, that Sam and Dean don’t possess.
You had a really intense scene with Dean in Thursday’s premiere. Will Sam be getting equal time with Castiel in future episodes?
You know what. For the first three episodes I only interact with Dean. So much so that I was beginning to think that maybe I was a figment of Dean’s imagination and that Dean was going crazy. But I do interact with Sam as well as another angel in future episodes. But my gut feeling without actually knowing anything is that my primary relationship is going to be with Dean for sometime.
Do you yourself believe in angels?
Thanks but I can’t take credit for it. It was actually a reader’s question [Thanks Claudia!]
So this is a plagerized question?
Yes, it’s a Joe Biden question.
[Laughs] I can’t say that I believe in angels but I can’t say that I don’t believe in angels. I’m open to the possibility of their existence although I don’t have any verifiable empirical evidence that they do exist
Great answer! Have you ever considered running for office?
I actually have. I was planning on going into politics before I was an actor. I interned at the White House but became so disillusioned with politics after interning in the White House that I turned to what some might consider an equally nefarious career.
So true. I mean are Hollywood and Washington really that dissimilar?
I think that they are birds of a feather.
I guess it’s a good thing SUPERNATURAL shoots in Vancouver then
Vancouver is a beautiful city. I had a couple of days off and spent them Kayaking and whale watching. Plus the entire time I’ve been up here it hasn’t rained once. It’s been very positive.
Thank you so much for taking the time to chat this afternoon.
It was my pleasure, thank you.
You can catch Misha Collins in a brand new episode of SUPERNATURAL this Thursday on the CW at 9PM [SUNnTV in Canada]
Photo: Sergei Bachlakov/The CW ©2008