“For us it was a really exciting episode to shoot because it’s a turning point,” says Welling. “I think from this episode on, this show is going to be very different from what it’s been in the past. We’re going to get to what I believe the audience wanted the show to be. Everything up to this point has just been building.”
“After the hundredth episode, these new episodes we’re doing are going to be better than those we’ve done in the past. And I know that there were people who were skeptical about moving this show to Thursday night but I’ve never had too many doubts. They’ve moved us around a few times and we’ve always done well, so I figured we could do well again. And the good thing is we have.”
The big news that’s been swirling about the show this year is the death that’s coming up. Can Welling talk about how he felt to see this person leave the show?
“It was very bittersweet to see that person go. I think it was bittersweet for that person themselves. I think they were looking forward to a little time off. But then, when the day came, that person was caught a few times on set just kind of looking around, going, ‘Yeah, well, I guess this is it, you know’.
“We all know the industry we’re in and that’s one of the beautiful things about it. Everyone is thrown together in this very intimate relationship where everyone is very focused, and it’s very much a team effort to get something done and then all of a sudden it’s wrap and everybody turns around and walks away. It happens every day at the end of the day and it also happens at the end of an episode when we lose a director or in a series where you lose a cast member. But luckily, when that person dies off the show, they don’t actually die in real life so you’re able keep in contact with them and continue your friendship.”
Did Tom Welling know that the death was going to occur well in advance, or was this another instance where he got the script and found out a week before it was going to happen?
“We didn’t know for sure. That person got a phone call, I think, the day before the script came out. This show does a really good job, leading up to this episode, to not hint toward it at all. And when the death occurs in the 100th episode, it’s a complete surprise to every single character. It’s not something that Lex planned or that the audience may have known about – or even had hints about in the future, as sometimes happens in episodic television. This is a complete surprise for everyone. And I literally didn’t know who it was until I read the script. I actually thought it was between two different people until I read the scripts. And I was right, this person was one of those two people, but I didn’t know for sure – ‘til I read it.”
And after all the celebrations of this landmark season, one final question – is Welling going to try to do another feature film, like he did on hiatus last year? A lot of people enjoyed The Fog, is he going to do something else?
“I’m going to try. I would like to. I enjoy the process very much, and we’re going to do what we can to keep me busy.”