Supernatural’s & Syfy’s Being Human’s Mark Pellegrino speaks…
Examiner - As if Mark Pellegrino doesn’t have enough on his plate working on the seventh season of Supernatural, the final season of The Closer, and reappearing in the second season of Being Human, he will also appear in the final episode of Chuck and will guest star on an upcoming episode of Castle (more on that soon). That’s more than enough to keep an artist creatively fulfilled, right? But Pellegrino doesn’t want to stop there. In order to work with his family and feed his ambitions even more, he is producing a series of short films that his wife will be directing. Where does he find the energy!? Pellegrino found some time to chat with us about all of his upcoming television gigs.
LA TV Insider Examiner: With pilot season upon us, are you at a point where you are looking for a show of your own? Or are you happy getting to mix it up and play with a lot of different casts, across networks, genres, and series?
Mark Pellegrino: When you’re not a series regular but you have all of these arcs on these shows, you have a little more independence to do what you want. You’re not locked into anything so much; you have little windows of time where you can work on something else. But I would love to get on a show because these long arcs make me really feel like a part of a family. And growing up the way I did, that was always sort of something that I’ve yearned for. It’s nice to work with people that you’re familiar with because a lot of times you just get so comfortable with everybody, and your work just gets better. The more relaxed and comfortable you are, the less reserved you are, the better your work is. Because when you come into a situation like Castle that’s been on for a few years, they’ve already developed a rhythm, and sometimes it can be a little scary. You don’t know how you’re going to fit or if how your chemistry will be or if you’ll get along with everybody. I’ve been fortunate, but it’s still uncomfortable the first day or two until you find your rhythm.
But first we’re about to see you pop up as a guest star in two really cool roles– in Castle, as you just mentioned, and returning to Chuck.
M.P.: I know! [Chuck] came as such a surprise. I don’t even think my character had a name until I came back. I think he was just “Man in Suit.” [Laughs]
We hear it’s a nice nod to Chuck‘s past, though.
M.P.: It was really cool. It’s making deals on a jet plane. I don’t know what made the cut, but it was a lot of fun. And, you know, as perilous as it was, a lot of things are still left open in the end.
Maybe we should root for a Fulcrum spin-off… But in the meantime, you will be returning as our favorite bad guy– Lucifer– on Supernatural.
M.P.: I never look at myself as a bad guy. As far as I’m concerned, I’m a bad guy in no show at all! I try to look at everything I do in a human way, not an archetypal way, so I try to use a simple thing that everybody, including myself, can relate to and get behind morally. And it ain’t easy– I’m not saying I’m morally behind Lucifer!
But even Lucifer has evolved in some ways over the seasons.
M.P.: You know, a couple seasons ago when Lucifer was stomping around Earth, he was going for kind of a larger picture revenge. And now he’s more settling for smaller torture. To what end, we don’t know.
So what does that torture look like in the episode you and Jared Padalecki just shot?
M.P.: The torture, you know, is just that needling…poking at constantly and letting him know 1) that I’m there and 2) he has absolutely no power to get rid of me. I am the one who decides what happens in this situation…It gets bad.
How bad can it get? We mean, once you’ve been to hell, the rest is relative, right?
M.P.: Well, maybe the idea is bringing the hell to earth, and that’s even worse.
That’s just depressing. Is Lucifer taking advantage of Sam’s other weaknesses, like his recent loss of Bobby?
M.P.: I don’t use anybody else at this point…but I think Lucifer would use whatever tool he had. If that would help, he would do it.
Similarly, Jeremy Carver revealed that you and Bishop will be returning to Being Human in this second season.
M.P.: I know the British version, the character comes back [but] the way I come back isn’t quite as– you don’t quite know what I am, to be honest with you. You don’t know if I’m a figment; am I real; what’s going on? Because Aidan, at that point, is disintegrating mentally. He’s really acting out and seeing a lot of things. I could be anyone.
So it sounds like there actually are a lot of parallels between Sam and Lucifer’s relationship right now on Supernatural and Aidan and Bishop’s on Being Human right now.
M.P.: I think [Bishop is an] even more justifiable tragedy. Poor Bishop, I mean; he loved too much…I think Lucifer has a respect for Sam but no love for anyone, but I think Bishop is motivated by real love. He wants to find and help and shelter [his] son. I think what’s really different is the positive– the really loyal, positive intentions of Bishop.
Speaking of positivity, there is Gavin on The Closer. But now that that show is coming to an end, is there room for you to pop up on Major Crimes?
M.P.: There’s a possibility of good old Gavin maybe showing up there, and that would be really nice. I love everybody on The Closer. Everybody there is so about people, you know? And the product is kind of secondary to these relationships that everybody builds up, and it’s about advancing people. For the first time ever when this woman who was doing my hair, and she was talking and funny and interesting, and three episodes later she’s directing an episode. I’ve never been on a show before where there’s that kind of crossover and that kind of opportunity. Just because people like you and they know what you’re capable of. Hollywood is kind of a caste system, and everyone is so rigidly in these molds, and then people respond to you in those molds, so to see somebody break out of it was so inspiring and great.
Are you considering branching into directing, as well?
M.P.: I would! I would love to. I mean, it’s a massive undertaking, and I’m kind of glad it’s my wife directing these shorts for now. At least as an actor, you live with the thing for the time you’re doing it, and then you can move on. When you’re a director, you live with it for the year before, and then all during production, and a few months or a year afterwards. It’s tough.
But so many shows are so welcoming to having one of their stars take a crack at an episode, so it might be a nice way to ease in.
M.P.: Yeah, when you’ve been on the show for a while, you can do that. And I know that Rick Wallace on The Closer mentors people. So it’s like, call him up and say ‘Me and my wife want to shadow you for an episode’, and the price of admission is a latte. So I’ll pay him his latte, and that’s great.
And just because you have the LOST connection, is there any interest or consideration to pop up on Alcatraz?
M.P.: Well, I haven’t had a chance to see it yet, but there was some talk of wanting me for Person of Interest. That fell through– the part they wanted me for couldn’t happen because of scheduling– so maybe from your lips to J.J.’s ears!
What do you think, TV heads? Where do you want to see Pellegrino pop up next? Or more importantly, what type of show might you want to see him star in? Sound off in the comments below!