One of the best things about a con in Vancouver, a Supernatural fan’s version of Mecca, is that the show is made right there. That means you can take fan pilgrimages to past filming locations (and current ones if you’re lucky), and catch up with some of the talented people who make the show so awesome — Supernatural’s fabulous actors, producers, crew and writers.
We spent some time with two of the writers whose episodes have turned us into sobbing messes (yes, of course that means we adore them), Robbie Thompson and Adam Glass, got the scoop on some iconic locations in Gastown with production designer John Marcynuk, and chatted with some of the talented VFX guys, Adam Williams and Ryan Curtis. One of the highlights of the trip for us was catching up with the man who makes every episode look like a gorgeous feature film, Director of Photography Serge Ladouceur, and watching Serge and director Bob Singer work their magic filming an upcoming episode, which looks like it will be incredible. It goes without saying that another highlight was getting to spend some time with Jared and Jensen a few days before the con. It wasn’t an interview, just a fun evening of good conversation, but we thought we’d share a few SPN related tidbits and amusing anecdotes that have us incredibly excited about Season 9!
When you fangirl someone, you wonder whether they’d be as likable “in real life”, and I’m sure plenty of fans have gotten to spend a little time with a celebrity and have been disappointed. With Jared and Jensen, we’ve felt just the opposite whenever we’ve been lucky enough to interview them or spend any time with them, and many other fans have told us the same. What smart, genuine, committed, nice guys they are – and funny as hell! (Not exactly news to anyone who’s watched the gag reel recently, right? We’re STILL laughing just thinking about some parts of it). Jensen told an amusing story about wanting to visit the abandoned and reputedly haunted floor of the old psychiatric hospital that SPN often films at, Riverview. When they finally got to do that, the person showing them around told them some pretty scary stories of things that had happened to her there that she couldn’t explain.
Jensen: (handwaves) I’m not easily creeped out.
Then they got to the big empty room where some pretty disturbing things had been done in the past, a few supplies and implements still there in the middle of the cavernous room.
Jensen: (deadpans) I’m totally creeped out.
Jared told an amusing story about Jensen being picked on in customs lines because he’s like the really good looking guy in high school that they always wanted to get back at. Awwww. We do agree with Jared about the really good looking part though. In fact, we bet it’s happened to Jared too. There had to be some down side to looking as gorgeous as these two, right? Poor boys…
You can’t watch the gag reel or a convention panel without realizing that Jared and Jensen like to tease each other almost as much as Sam and Dean do. Jensen calls Jared “the big guy” (as though he wasn’t over six feet himself…) Jared likes to call Jensen an old man, and Jensen is so expecting it that he often interrupts and makes the joke himself before Jared can, which we found highly amusing. The two are clearly in tune with each other after spending so many years working closely together, which can be dangerous to bystanders. At one point they were kidding around and Jensen fake-punched Jared. Jared instantly ducked backwards without even having to think about it. That left Lynn on the other side of him to nearly have a heart attack at the unexpected sight of a fist suddenly right there. Cue Lynn’s ridiculous squeak of surprise and subsequent blushing.
Jensen and Lynn talked a bit about her hometown of Philly, where one of Jensen’s oldest friends also lives, Eagles longsnapper Jon Dorenbos. Jon was the master of ceremonies for a charity auction that Lynn was involved in recently, raising funds for children with developmental disabilities. Some of you have contributed to Team Levi in honor of Jensen’s nephew; Lynn is involved with this charity in honor of her niece. Like so many of the SPN Family and extended family, including Jared, Jensen and Misha, Jon is committed to helping others and creating change. (He’s also a really good magician, which is sort of unexpected for a pro football player…). Our friends and fellow SPN fansite, WinchesterBros, is having a charity auction right now to benefit Team Levi, if you’d like to help out.
Both the boys were surprisingly energetic after a long day of filming. We asked if they were still excited about starting a new season of Supernatural after nine years.
Jared and Jensen (in unison, just like Sam and Dean) YES! Absolutely.
It’s obvious they’re not jaded, that they’re still very much into it (just like we are!). We asked them why they thought they’d stayed so invested.
Jared: I think it’s actually because of what you wrote about in Fandom At The Crossroads. It’s because of the fans, because this show has made a difference in so many people’s lives. It’s about how being a fan is bigger than the show, it’s about the community, and making best friends through fandom, and all the charitable work that fans can organize around and do, like the St. Jude’s contribution that fans did, and we’re just so impressed and so grateful.
We agreed that fandom really does make a difference – in the world and in people’s lives. Jared and Jensen both seem to feel that it’s a privilege, being involved in making a show that’s so important to fans. That has made it even more important to them as well. They have a tradition of starting each new season by going to a particular bar for an inaugural toast to the success of the new season, and of coming back at the end of the season to close it out (and jokingly say don’t call me for two months, haha) and toast to the next one. Apparently that tradition has been working very well – keep it up, boys!
Would they want to be even more ‘famous’?
Jared and Jensen (in unison again) No!
Jared: We’re in agreement.
They’re in agreement a lot, it seems. Which is probably one of the reasons SPN has lasted this long and remained this good.
We promised Jared and Jensen copies of our new book, Fangasm, which includes our interviews with them about SPN, fame and fans — and will most certainly give them many good laughs at our expense. We never, in our wildest dreams, expected so much support from Jared, Jensen, Misha, Kripke, and so many others for our books about Supernatural and the best fandom in the world, the SPNFamily. We’re humbled and incredibly grateful.
You can pre-order Fangasm now by clicking here on Amazon and laugh along with Jared and Jensen.
And if you’d like to read our more academic exploration of SPN and fandom and our analysis of what makes fandom so important to so many of us, you can buy Fandom at the Crossroads: Celebration, Shame and Fan/Producer Relationships now by clicking here on Amazon.
Knowing how excited Jared and Jensen are about Season 9 has us practically unable to contain our own anticipation. Is it almost October???
Check back soon for more with writers Robbie Thompson and Adam Glass and behind the scenes on SPN. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr for updates!