Supernatural Interviews

Dominic Burgess -- "Ember"

by @ChangingChanne1

Between seasons one and seasons four in magicians, were there any differences of being on set?

No, I don't think so. I mean we went through different directors. Maybe in the first season, the first time they put make up on, might've taken a little longer. 'Cause it's the first time that they're applying everything and they had to figure out what to do with my hair. The first season, the beard that I have is real, it's my own bit. It had been growing out on other roles that I'd been doing. And then in subsequent seasons it's a fake beard. So that added sometimes to the makeup process. But makeup takes around five to five and a half hours in. And then about an hour and a half out. I have this hard cap that they have to glue onto my head. And then with little sort of cotton buds, they have to get oil and sort of pry it off my head afterwards. But it's all good and a fun process. In the actual filming of it, I don't know. I don't think so.

Was there any differences in how it felt though?

How so? In ...?

Like, could you definitely tell like ... 'Cause I know that the last time I talked to you, you said that The Magician set was a lot like a family.

Yeah. Everyone on The Magicians is so wonderful and that's so passionate about what they're doing. And The Magicians is one of those shows. You work on different shows as an actor, and The Magicians is one of those shows where I'm a fan of the show as well. And so I'm always eager to be there and be like, oh, right, I got the script beforehand. So that's always very exciting to me. And yeah, I guess there's the old familiarity of going back to a set and you're like, oh, here's my hooves, here's Sarah and Harlow who do my makeup. Because I spend a lot of time with them in the trailer and then, they follow me around the all day to make sure that everything is in place.

So yeah, it's such a wonderful collaborative environment. And, with Sera Gamble and John McNamara to work with people who know that you love cats so much, that that little inside joke is to write a scene where I'm just covered kittens, I think speaks volumes to them in terms of how wonderful they are to work with and how creative and how much joy would bring them and how much joy it would bring me. Yeah, it's just delightful.

That's awesome. I love all the different animals on the magicians -- the rabbits are my favorite.

 I always get very anxious on The Magicians when animals come into play. Because you don't know if they're going to get exploded or ... But ... Yeah.

So far nothing has happened to the bunnies though, so that makes me happy.

Yeah, yeah, yeah. But yeah, it's a delight. I love it so much.

Yeah. I don't blame you. There has so far been to timeline Embers that we know of, and both are dead, which is not good. If you had the chance to write other storyline Ember-

Oh man.

What would you write?

I know what it would be. I love Ember so much. When you're in so much makeup, when you were in makeup for five and half, six hours, and then the two hours of makeup out and there's people constantly checking, then nothing is peeling off or falling off, there's a part of me that would love Ember to come back in a way that makes him human. In a way that it's like, no, you're gonna see what it's like as a human. So then I can just be on set and interact with Summer and Hale without having to be pulled away and ... Did you ever watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer?


So, Anya for me was one of my favorite characters because she is this God who then has to learn what being human is all about. I loved that character. So I guess if I had carte blanche on The Magicians, it would be a similar sort of storyline, where we could see his humanity or his understanding of what it means to be human, I guess.

I like that idea. I really, really do actually. 'Cause it's ... It's been interesting watching, like especially with these past couple of episodes, watching everyone basically go from forgetting themselves to knowing who they are, and then having El being like this kind of weird creature type thing. I'm assuming you're up to date.

I haven't seen in last night's episode. So, I'm one episode behind. But yeah, I think again, John and Sera are so good at defying conventions and flipping things on their head and doing the unexpected. The show keeps reinventing itself and the characters and it keeps finding a way of making itself fresh, which I think is a testament to them.

I remember in season two, I think it was four episodes in, when Ember and the beast have the confrontation and you expect the beats to be this big overreaching thing that they didn't kill at the end of the first season and then in the fourth episode of the second season, they're like, oh, they killed the big bad? Oh, oh, oh, I wasn't expecting that in episode four. Okay. I think they do really wonderful stuff and it's always a joy to just be part of it all.

I love the controversy and just the stuff that makes you giggle. I'm sorry, but does the Liberians’ Universe not look like Cheerios?

I see, yes. Or donuts?

They're too thin to be donuts. I was at first thinking that, but I'm like Cheerios, they look like cheerios.

It's just such a fun, rich universe episode to episode. I'd like to see a young Ember. When it's his first time creating the universe when everything is new and fresh and he is excited and not jaded by everything. There is so much fun that you can have.

There is so much fun. So what did you enjoy most about reprising Ember?

Well, because I was dead, just getting told that I was coming back was wonderful enough for me. And also I love Vancouver. I love any chance I get to go and work in Vancouver. It's really wonderful. It's a real gift as an actor when you get to travel and work and explore new places. And Vancouver's such a wonderful city and everything downtown is walkable and then you can take a drive 15 minutes north and you're in the wilderness and you got the mountains. It's a really special place. So getting to go to that full for The Magicians and Flash and Supernatural is always a treat.

One of the things that I have to really give kudos to Magicians is that, Supernatural, because I was born and raised in Vancouver, I can pretty much spot all the exterior sets. Whereas Magicians, you guys film a lot outside of sets, but it's like where is that?

When they were on the ship last season, I think they would travel up to Squamish and they would shoot a lot up towards Squamish. And then of course, the set decoration, the dressing is wonderful, and they film a lot from New York and, there just masters of their craft. Everyone who works on there is just a master of their craft.

We shot, I think it was second season, we were in Stanley Park and there's an old part of the zoo and so we were filming in an old polar bear enclosure as like part of my old tomb. It's just fun to explore those places. And then the castle set is so majestic and so ... Everything is just beautiful. Everything they find and create is just beautiful.

And the details are just awesome. So before I forget, I wanted to say thank you for being my true first Magicians interview. Hopefully one of many.

Oh boy. You're welcome.

I tweeted at Sera, I said, I'm going to cover Magicians now and it's all your fault. Hopefully there will be more. I'm working on it.

It's really fun ... I'm much better at Twitter than I used to be, and The Magicians fans on Twitter are always so wonderful and so responsive and so excited. People tweet at me all the time about little cakes and kittens. And, it's such a treat to get that response from people that are so excited by the show.

And that's one of the things I love about social media is the fact that you can actually interact with these people that you see on your screen and that sort of thing. And they actually will talk back to you.

On the other side being talent, it must be really cool to know that your work is being enjoyed and to be able to actually correspond with fans.

You know, I had a conversation with Alfred Molina who I'd worked with on another show, and we got into a discussion about Twitter. He was saying that a lot of people don't like it, but he enjoys it. And he put a really fun spin on it saying that in the olden days when you're on stage, you'll get an immediate reaction from the audience, whether it was cheers or boos or laughter. And he said that when you're in television or film, you don't get that response. And now with the advent of social media and Twitter, an episode airs and then you now get that live response, and the live feedback about what is resonating with people. So he put up a really fun spin on that saying like, "Oh, no, I like it because now it's that feedback that you see the people are enjoying the work again.” So he put a really fun spin on that.

And then I have to show you this. One of the fans of The Magicians made a Funko pop for me of Ember-... Which is delightful. Just fans that are so wonderful and kind and just love that world.

(@SaintLov created this pop; her Etsy store can be found here.)

Isn't it beautiful?

It's gorgeous.

It has a prized place on a shelf in my kitchen.

Yes. I love her work. Her work is absolutely awesome.

So Magicians, Supernatural crossover.

Oh boy.

What would happen?

Oh man. Well I'm sure Sera Gamble, John Mcnamara could find a way to make it happen because they're geniuses. And of course Sera has a long history with Supernatural. Gosh, I don't know. I mean is Ember alive again? Let's assume that Ember is alive. I would just hope that Sam and Dean wouldn't try and kill him. That's all. That's all that Ember wants in life. I don't know. That's a good question though.

I thought it would be kind of good. So, you were talking about giving advice and stuff earlier. Did you give Ryan McDonald any tips on playing Ember?

No. I think ... When an actor comes into a role, it's theirs to make their own. If you can take over a role, I think that they can watch themselves, but then, it's your character and you've been cast in it and it's yours to do with what you want. I would never presume to say this is what you should do.

Well, it was actually kind of funny though, because to anyone watching the show and standing back, it was obviously not Ember. The way he played it was so funny.

Do you have any other upcoming roles you'd like to share?

Yeah, I keep pretty busy. I just shot an episode of The Rookie last week. And then when season three of Santa Clarita Diet comes out, I think March or April, there's a nice little recurring role on there throughout the season. And then later this year, that's a horror film called Ma, which is a Blumhouse horror with Juliette Lewis and Octavia Spencer and Allison Janney. I have a fun little role in that too.

Since it's tonight, Supernatural 300. Any thoughts or opinions?

No. I just think it's so great. For any show to reach 300 episodes is wonderful. And then for a genre show, maybe even more so. I don't know, is it more so? But for a show to be around for so long and to keep its fan base, and then, I guess through Netflix, new fans of the show come along and while I've been in LA, and if I take a Lift or an Uber, I've realized that the fan bases spans such a wide array of ages. I mean, I've spoken to men and women that are maybe in their 60s, 70s that love the show. And then families that then say that their teenage kids are getting into the show. And so, it's really interesting for it to have such a wide demographic.


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Dominic Burgess interview comments


"I love Jared's compassion in this interview ❤️" ~ Miss Horizon

"Wow!!! I love the insight! This is so cool!!" ~ Chantrelle Chase

"This makes me wish I lived close enough to visit. :) It also makes me happy to hear about a part of Jared's life that makes HIM happy, something he loves doing. Maybe someday I'll get down there! Thanks for doing this. :)" ~ Janne

"Hey, Carol! Amazing interview! I like the fact you focused your questions outside SPN, giving Jared the opportunity to talk about something he's passionate about. And that passion, I can see in his answers...well done! As a fellow journalist, SPN fan and as a person who admires Jared for who he is and what he does, your interview was professional and on point! Thank you so much for this!" ~ Mika Araujo Silva

"What I enjoyed most about this interview is that it veered away from the usual SPNfocused format and was centered on Jared and his life and creativity outside of the entertainment. I dont drink, but I'd love to visit San Jac, if for no other reason than the atmosphere of relaxed fun and the community spirit that seems to be such a huge part of anything even remotely related to Jared Padalecki. Thanks for a completely enjoyable interview, Carol. Jared revealed so much more of his own personality in this!" 
~ Doris Helmick

" Cool interview! I've been to San Jac's for my meet-up well should say Jack's room bc it was insane downstairs. It's a really cool place to go hang out! the singer that night was Will Southern he's a really nice guy and can sing the majority of Jensen's songs. I'd highly recommend going to San Jac's and Jack's room! This will sound insane but it really feels like home when you walk in there bc the insanity of 6th St can be overwhelming so having San Jac's is a comfort (if that makes any sense)" ~ Sax Sasuke

"What a good insight into an often overlooked part of Jared's life. San Jac sounds like a warm and fun place to spend an evening. Although not a country music fan myself (although I married one for sure lol), if the husbeast and I ever make it down to Austin we'll be sure to check it out. Wonderful interview, Carol. Thanks, and looking forward to reading more of your articles." ~ Hex Parker

"Place does sound amazing. And it sounds like the sort of long term business plan that uses the advantage they have that many new business owners don't, of outside income, to not have to cut corners and really make the kind of place they love, and their customers love. So, that, if they ever get to the point where this does become their 'day job', they have already built a big, reliable customer base that comes knowing they'll be guaranteed a great time, in a warm, welcoming place. If I ever get to Austin, I'll be sure to make a point to stop by." ~ Karen Brown

"This interview is really great. I enjoy reading it. I'll definitely check this place when I visit Austin. And it should be "happier", Jared, not "more happy". From one gramnar nazi, to another." ~ Stephanie

"I had the pleasure of visiting San Jac and Jack's while on a trip to Austin back in April of this year. We went late Friday afternoon and Brian, the bartender at that time of day, was a delight and since it was slow clientele-wise, he spent some time chatting with us and even showed us inventory so we could select our San Jac purchases to take home. That was the night that Chris Ray was the live entertainment and he was wonderful to listen to. We finished our stay there by making it back there one more time on a Monday. Curtis was the bartender then and again he was a delight to chat with and get some more insight on San Jac. 6th Street has everything and a must stop if you ever make it there." ~ Susan Ladigo

"*heart eyes* Thank you for the interview! It’s lovely and well written. I can’t wait to read more." ~ Amanda Sweeden

"Wow, Carol, this is awesome. Thank you so much for getting this lovely insight into this, clearly really important, part of Jared's life. I so desperately want to go to Austin now!" ~ Susan Randall