Nathan Fillion casts a spell over ‘Castle’ interview

Tonight the fourth season of the ABC hit ‘Castle’ debuts with what I predict will feel more of an emotional roller coaster than all the Six Flags park put together. Leading man Nathan Fillion takes a break to talk to Maggie Furlong of AOLTV.

Nathan Fillion gives good interview. It’s just a fact, although I realize not a very surprising one. Going into the fourth season of ‘Castle’ (premieres Mon., Sept. 19, 10PM ET on ABC), he’s still so invested in the Castle-Beckett relationship, the storylines, the ideas for where to go next, even the guest stars. He loves ‘Castle’ as much as the fans do, and it shows.

I caught up with Fillion to talk all about the jaw-dropping Season 4 premiere — after last season’s shooting and the big “I love you” cliffhanger, we certainly find our favorite will they-won’t they TV couple treading new ground. Fillion dished about women, Castle’s usual distraction when things get tricky with Beckett, but also the new boss (“She’s so mean!”) and maybe, possibly getting Castle officially deputized to do some real policing.
Then we talked about this season’s ‘Ghostbusters’-inspired Halloween episode, Fillion’s dream scenario for Season 4 and his personal casting choice to play Castle’s dad that got him all choked up just talking about it.

Warning: There are some mild spoilers from the Season 4 premiere ahead. [I’ve cut most of these because I didn’t want to know myself.]

The Season 4 premiere is insane — you guys are killing it!
God bless you! Thank you!

Obviously coming back, we have to deal with the aftermath of Beckett’s shooting, but there’s also those three little words that Castle said to her hanging in the air.
I like to say there’s certain things you can’t take back: One of them is “I love you,” and one of them is bullets. And she got both. [Laughs] You look into what could possibly keep these two people apart, and in the past we’ve had bad timing, we’ve had one person blows it or the other person blows it … they’re very clever at ‘Castle’ not to play the same notes over and over again. Much like life, hurdles are placed in our way, but once you overcome that hurdle, it’s usually overcome.

But the season premiere really sets up this season’s big hurdle …
Yes. What we have now is, Beckett has gotten so close to solving her mother’s murder that she understands now that she can’t be a complete person without putting this to rest. She can’t give herself over to a feeling without resolving another feeling. So here is Castle, pushing and pushing and pushing this investigation. It’s killed Montgomery, it’s almost killed Beckett, and then he gets a phone call that says, “We will kill Beckett if she keeps pushing.” So now he’s in a position where he has to basically try to pull her away from an investigation that, if she were to solve it, she’s saying, “I’d be available. I’d be yours. I’d be open to something.” And he’s the one who has to say no, because he sees the danger of it.

And it is danger — you all raised the stakes by killing off Captain Montgomery, so now, even though she is Beckett and you are Castle, really anything is possible.
And here’s the sad part: I truly miss Ruben Santiago-Hudson. I truly miss that man … I miss the character of Roy Montgomery, but I really miss the man, Ruben. If there’s a dangerous situation, a life-threatening situation going on, and nobody dies, it’s not life-threatening. I learned that working for Joss Whedon. [Laughs]

But as realistic as it was, it was still totally unexpected. Losing the captain made the stakes even higher going into this season.
Yeah, it makes it far more visceral, it puts people at risk and it removes that block of safety, that “Oh no, it’s alright, it’s just a TV show.” When you lose something, that sense of loss makes it real … even for myself, as an audience member. In that much, I truly appreciate the sacrifice that Ruben Santiago-Hudson has made, literally taking a bullet for the show.
Now you’re testing another sort of known “fact” of the show. We had the idea that everyone would always live, but we also think that everyone finds Castle charming. That’s not the case with the new captain. Penny Johnson Jerald is awesome …
This is interesting. She’s a woman who has risen to the rank of captain — that can’t have been an easy journey. I’m trying to imagine that she’s hardened because of everything she’s had to face in getting where she is. But you cross that personality with Castle, who is constantly around women and constantly trying to charm them. His life is really easy and he charms people — that’s what he does! People can’t stand it, but they love him anyway! “Oh, I can’t take it! But I like him.” [Laughs] She will not be charmed. She will not be charmed by Castle, and she won’t give him a chance, nevermind a chance to be charmed. She’s so mean! And he can’t take it. “Why don’t you like me? Get to know me!” Like he really thinks that he can crack her … but he won’t.

Obviously Castle has his connections, and I’m sure he can have the Mayor smooth things over a bit, but I wonder, with her being so by the books, if we might see Castle forced into some actual police training this season. Is that a possibility?
I’d like to think so. Granted, we are a television program — there has to be a suspension of disbelief that a murder-mystery author could actually tail police on these jobs where he’s literally wearing a bullet-proof vest, literally getting shot at and he’s fired a couple of bullets himself, this guy. This probably would not fly in real life. I can say that with almost absolute certainty, but I would like anything that lends validity to a television program. You can actually go out and buy a Richard Castle novel — that lends a little bit of validity to our show. It kind of makes it real because it’s reaching out into real life. Or if Castle actually gets some police training, some kind of special deputization of some kind where he could actually handle a weapon and legally be allowed in these situations, I would love that. I’m gonna take that to the top! To the brass!

I have goosebumps — that’s really sweet. And something more fun that we keep hearing about is the ‘Ghostbusters’-themed Halloween episode.
We have a murder that happens in a haunted house with a ghost hunter. No one from the ‘Ghostbusters’ movie [is coming on], no … but that would be nice. Hey, Bill Murray! There’s a dad! Let’s get Bill Murray to play my dad. [Laughs]

I love it. So by the end of Season 4, where do you want to see Castle? Do you want him to be in a relationship, or fighting the good Beckett fight?
My pitch that I keep pitching is that some kind of drunken evening occurs between Castle and Beckett, and it looks like something romantic is just about to happen. Smash cut to Castle waking up in bed and someone’s hand drapes over him, and it’s not Beckett. Is it the new captain? Is it Lanie? How do you piece together what happened last night? I’m into that kind of thing.


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