Exclusive Interview: Alfred Gough, Creator/Executive Producer of Smallville (Part 2)
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Since you guys started Smallville, the comic book landscape has pretty much exploded, especially on a cinematic level. What do you think started that and how much do you think Smallville was a part of it? Well, I definitely think Smallville was a part of it. I think it was sort of a combination of the first X-Men movie coming out of nowhere and surprising everybody and showing Hollywood that there is a definite fan base and if you have people that treat the material with respect, you can not only make commercially successful movies, but also artistically successful movies. And then I think it was a combination of the X-Men and the first Spiderman, and then Smallville as well, where I think people really set up and took notice that, like I said before, you can do big commercial movies that are also artistically successful. I think even on television, it was demystifying the sort of, comic book characters, the fears of costumes and stuff, which obviously we don't deal with on the show until this year, but certainly the movies had to deal with. And, quite frankly, certainly the fact that CGI had evolved to such a point that you could realistically do these things, and it keeps evolving to the fact that what we can do on the show every week, some of these things we couldn't do five years ago. So, I think it's that evolution and the fact that these movies came out and did very well. I know you were involved in the production of Spider Man 2, but were you involved with the third one? No, we weren't. We were involved with Spider Man 2, but were not involved with Spiderman 3. Are you working on anything else? Anything else on the pipeline besides Smallville at the moment? We've just done the third Mummy movie for Universal, and that one looks like it's gearing up for production, and we just signed on to write a movie based on Jungle Cruise for Disney. So, those are sort of our big projects at the moment. Knowing that a lot of fans are rooting for Lana and Clark, why did you decide to pair Lana and Lex this year knowing that it could make some fans mad? Again, I think the Lana, Lex, Clarke triangle is always the key triangle of the show and, quite frankly, something that we couldn't play until season 5. And, you know, it seems to us that the natural evolution, whether she'll end up with Lex, or back with Clarke, that remains to be seen. But again, I think if you're going to keep moving the show and characters forward, you need to explore all these different relationships. What will Lana's answer to Lex's proposal be? (Laughs)...I'm not telling you. Will Jonathan Kent pop up again in one form or another? Probably not. No. Seeing that fans have really responded well to the Green Arrow, are there any plans to expand on this or spin him off? There are no plans to spin him off. We may bring him back...we sort of have an arc, and he may pop up again, but that's going to be determined upon whether or not Justin gets a pilot, and my guess is he will. So, he's definitely a character that we can certainly revisit, and if not later this season, perhaps next season. You're hinting that Lionel and Martha will become a couple, is this something that will truly materialize? Ultimately, no, because I think that Martha is too good and pure and sees Lionel for what he really is, and the question really being - when is Lionel going to really show his stripes again, which we'll see in the latter half of the season. Do you expect a 7th season and if so, do you have any idea where the show will be headed next year? (Laughs) We certainly have our fingers crossed for a seventh season, and I think given our ratings on our network versus the other shows on the network, I think it's a pretty good call that we'll come back. And, again, next year it's hard to say. We'll just keep moving his journey towards Superman further and introduce other DC comic characters. I think that's sort of the fun as we get toward the end of the series that we're able to introduce all of the elements from later in his life, you get to see them earlier, like the other Justice League members, and some of these villains like Zod and the Brainiac. So, we'll try to keep the story as compelling as we can until the end.
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This interview is the sixth in a series of BuddyTV interviews with the creators, writers, and producers behind many of TV's hit shows. Thus far, we've featured an interview with John Shiban (executive producer of Supernatural), an interview with Mark Schwahn (creator of One Tree Hill) an interview with Hank Steinberg (creator of The Nine), an interview with David Crane and Jeffrey Klarik (the creators of The Class), and an interview with David S. Rosenthal (new Head Writer/Executive Producer of Gilmore Girls).
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