It’s a safe bet that “Arrow’s” Katie Cassidy would look shapely in Black Canary's signature fishnet stockings, but will she actually make the move from love interest to fellow crime fighter?
With the action-adventure series based on the DC Comics superhero Green Arrow emerging as The CW’s breakout hit of the fall season, Cassidy – best known for her stints on “Melrose Place” and “Gossip Girl” – has made a strong impression as Oliver Queen’s crusading ex- (and possibly future) girlfriend Laurel Lance. Cassidy reveals what she loves about the role, how her famous dad ("Partridge Family" family lead David Cassidy) let her find her own way in Hollywood, and how she’s up for some fight training should those fishnets find their way into her wardrobe.
Let’s talk about developing that love/hate chemistry with Stephen Amell in the first part of the season, because that can be tricky to pull off.
There's definitely a fine line with that. There's a lot of push and pull that goes on between the two characters. I think you'll see the journey that they go on, it's certainly a bumpy ride. But having said that, you can't help who you love. I feel like they have such a strong connection and the history between them, they've known each other since they were kids.
Given that Dinah Laurel Lance is better known as the Black Canary in the comic books, are you physically prepping yourself for the call to slip into a superhero costume at some point?
Yeah. I think overall, in general, I'm a pretty physical and fit person. I try to take care of myself and workout and stuff like that.
How closely have you looked at the original comic book character and the blonde wig – the whole look that’s defined her since she debuted in the ‘40s.
I certainly did a lot of research before I met with the guys and before I got the role, but as far as actually going back and reading into it too much, I try not to do that. I don't want to change what I've sort of already developed in my head.
Are you pro-fishnets?
It kind of just depends on how the whole costume would come together. I have this action figure that I was given by a fan that's the Black Canary. I noticed that it was very revealing, with not a lot of material in the costume, so that's a little scary! But I'm sure that it'd be something that came together in a very cool and classy way.
Were you aware of the comic book characters when you were young?
I was more of a videogame person actually. I wasn't very into comic books. I was literally more about 'Mortal Kombat' and 'Duke Nukem' on the PC.
You’ve said that your father, David Cassidy, advised you to not take a job unless you were passionate about it. Were you always able to adhere to his wisdom?
I certainly think at some point in your career, this is how we make money. This is our job and it becomes your life. When I was really young, I moved out when I was 18 years old and had nothing. The one thing that I will say that I appreciate about my parents is when I moved out, they were basically like, 'You're going to be on your own and you're going to learn like everyone else to make a living and choose what you want to do.'
If I needed help they probably would've helped me, but the whole time it was just me. I had my one bedroom apartment and I didn't have a lot of money and so there were times that I took roles because I needed to survive. Having said that, I think that you get to a place in your career, which I think has happened in the last couple of years, where I've gotten the opportunity and have been so lucky to be more selective and actually feel passionate and driven about these projects that I have taken. I've gotten to a place where I can feel a little bit more comfortable.
How pleased or horrified were they that you wanted to be an actor?
I think they were definitely slightly horrified. But they were both very big on following my dream and they knew how important it was to me and how much I wanted it. My dad also said to me, 'As long as you work hard at it, you can never learn too much.' He was like, 'As long as you're in class and you study and show that this is actually what you want to do, I will support it.' I think he saw that, and so now he is just proud.
Had you stayed in regular talks with The CW since your last show with them?
I have stayed very close with them. The CW has been wonderful to me, and I sat down and met with them about a year ago – and I wanted to be back on their network. We sat down and talked and they said, 'What kind of show are you looking to do?' I said that it would be really cool to do something action-packed, a kick-ass-type role. Sure enough this came along, and I read it and it was a great group of people: Marc Guggenheim, Greg Berlanti and Andrew Kreisberg – they were certainly the people that I wanted to be in business with. It was a wonderful script and a wonderful character, so it all just fell into place.
What do you like about Laurel?
I love the fact that she's a strong woman who isn't afraid to go after what she wants. Her integrity, her morals and her values are very, very high. I just think especially in today's society the working woman is very much more respected. I think it's great that she gets to take on this role and make things happen that she strongly believes in.
Are we going to see you in any other projects aside from “Arrow?”
Yeah. I don't know if you're familiar with this graphic novel called 'The Scribbler.' We just shot the movie and I played Suki who has multiple personality disorder. It was really dark, really edgy. It was crazy to play someone who had multiple personality disorder. It has a big sci-fi element to it and a kind of psychological mind game that the whole movie is about. It was an amazing experience!
"Arrow" airs Wednesday nights at 8 p.m. ET on The CW