Zachary Levi on Directing Tonight’s CHUCK: “I was ready to hand off the reins.”


Because juggling feelings for two of the most beautiful women on television (Yvonne Strahovski and Kristin Kreuk), a full-time job at the Buy More and his extracurricular activities as the CIA’s most valuable asset clearly wasn’t enough to do, tonight’s episode of CHUCK has series star Zachary Levi stepping behind the camera as well.

Entitled “Chuck Versus the Beard,” Levi will make his directorial debut in an episode which finds our titular hero sitting on the bench after he loses his ability to “flash.”

But if you’re thinking that having his character on the sidelines made things any easier for Levi, think again. Not only will troublesome forces affect Chuck back at the base, tonight’s episode — which the blogosphere has characterized as everything from ‘game-changing’ to ‘awesome!’ — is what critics are calling “a real step forward in the story.”

“One of the perks of it was that I got all of our regulars in the cast in my episode. Casey, Sarah, good old Morgan Grimes, Big Mike, Jeff and Lester and Ellie and Awesome,” said Levi on a recent conference call with reporters. “I just kind of let them do what they do and they do it so well. I would only come in if there was like a pacing thing, if it was a timing thing, maybe there was a slightly different way to attack a moment. But everyone, you know, brings their “A” game all the time, that’s why I love them and respect them so much.”

Of course, no matter how, well, awesome your team both in front and behind the camera are, delivering and starring in a multi-million dollar budgeted episode of television is not surprisingly, a lot easier said than done.

“There was one moment specifically where I found myself so overwhelmed that I was ready to — I know it sounds defeatist — but I was ready to hand off the reins,” admitted the actor during January’s Television Critics Association Press Tour. “Would I have at the end of the day? Probably not because I’m too prideful in that regard, but it’s a very strenuous job in and of itself, not including having to wear the other [acting] hat when everybody is depending on you.”

So would he do it again?

“I would, but not this season. It was an incredibly difficult job.”

Photo Credit: Justin Lubin/NBC

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  • TVFan

    So excited for tonight and thrilled Zachary powered thru

  • Crystal

    Love, love, love him!

  • Tim WIlkins

    Loved that ep last night. So good to have Chuck’s BFF ‘the beard’ at his side. Funny ep. Def a ‘game changer.’ Kudos.