‘Smallville’ star Justin Hartley talks new season
Christian Bale knows it. Tobey Maguire knows it. Soon Keri Russell will know it. When it comes to playing a comic book character on the big or small screen, there is no middle ground: Either you’re really good and fans accept you, or you’re really bad and you’re dead to them. So it speaks volumes that, two seasons after Justin Hartley (at right) first joined the CW’s long-running hit Smallville as the Green Arrow, he’s still around AND will become an official series regular this season. Brian Truitt found him at Comic-Con and talked about what’s in store for the character.
Hartley, 31, showed up at Comic-Con with a short beard quite unlike that of the clean-shaven Green Arrow and his secret identity, young billionaire Oliver Queen. The beard is for the episode he’s in the middle of filming. It delves into how Queen became a sure-shot with a bow: He was stranded on an island and learned to hunt to survive.
While previous seasons had Hartley teaming with star Tom Welling‘s Clark Kent in a tweak on the Justice League mythology and breaking the heart of former paramour Lois Lane (Erica Durance), his increased role has allowed Hartley to delve into Green Arrow’s backstory. He says Queen reverts back to some of his womanizing and non-heroic ways. “No one really knows who he is because he can’t tell them,” Hartley says. “That’s a big burden. Imagine waking up every day and having a whole part of yourself you can’t tell someone about. That leads him to question whether or not it’s worth it and he starts to go the other way – kind of a downward spiral.”
Is Hartley a master archer yet? No, but he says he’s really good after continued lessons with a world-class bowman. And might Green Arrow get a sidekick? Hartley says he would welcome it if they added Speedy, Green Arrow’s ward in the DC Comics universe.