Mark talks about what it’s like to play Lucifer. And no, Mark, I don’t think you’re a freak…
You may not know the name just yet — though you will — but if you’re a fan of Dexter, Supernatural (TV) and/or Lost, then you know Mark Pellegrino. Pellegrino, who can boast of 100 film and television credits, played Paul, Rita’s (Rita Benz) piece-of-work ex-husband on Dexter, and he’s also Lucifer on Supernatural and the mysterious Jacob on Lost. He’ll be back on Supernatural on Nov. 19, in the show’s last episode for 2009, “Abandon All Hope,” and will return to Lost when that series kicks off its sixth and final season in early 2010. PopStar recently caught up with Pellegrino for an extensive –and exclusive — two-part interview. Look for part two tomorrow.
Q:At this point, when people recognize you on the street, what role is it that they most associate you with?
The most feedback I get so far is from Dexter and it usually goes something like this: “Oh my God. you’re Paul from Dexter right?” “Yes.” “I love you man. You are such an a–hole. Do you mind signing something or taking a picture with me…?” But here’s a little bit of recent irony. When I’m in Hawaii shooting for Lost I’ve been getting stopped for Supernatural. And when I’m in Vancouver shooting for Supernatural I’ve been getting stopped for Lost. Go figure.
Q:Let’s talk about Supernatural and then we’ll get into Lost in the second part of our conversation. So many actors have played Lucifer/Satan over the years. How did you go about delivering a performance and creating a character that was at once familiar and scary, but fresh and original?
Well, luckily the writers have a very different take on things with respect to the dynamics of the angels. As you know, the angels in the show can be, well, a—holes. It is Lucifer who is kind and empathetic and truthful. So, play the “Prince of Lies” as the most sincere one of the bunch and you have a fresh take. But I have a feeling things are gonna change. Lucifer has a big chip on his shoulder and that can’t be restrained for long.
Q:We know that Sam (Jared Padalecki) is Lucifer’s true vessel, so give us a preview of what happens in “Abandon All Hope.”
The proverbial crap is gonna fly. Hell, it’s the apocalypse for crying out loud. Something’s gotta give. If I tell you more than that I’ll have to kill you.
Q:How much do you personally need to understand all of the crazy, complicated back story involving Lilith (Katherine Boecher) and Azazel (Fredric Lehne) and the 66 Seals, etc., in order to play what (executive producer) Eric Kripke and the writers pop into their scripts?
Well, I had to learn Enochian. Who knew that was a real language? And I have been reading the Book of Enoch as a preparation for this. But, so far, I’ve found that the history and backstory haven’t been necessary. Lucifer’s fall from grace is a well known story and the bare bones of this tale is revenge. All I really have to bring to it is a strong sense of the justice of my cause and a sense of humor.
Q:How much more of you will we see on the show after this next episode?
Well, that all depends on the strength of my vessel. And in “Abandon All Hope,” Nick, my vessel, is looking a little piqued, I have to admit. Hopefully, he can hold out for a while. I personally think Nick was angry enough to contain Lucifer for longer, but one can never tell.
Q:Be honest, who’s more evil, Lucifer from Supernatural or Paul from Dexter?
This may sound totally insane, but I don’t think either of them is evil. Think about it. Lucifer was betrayed by his father and his brother for the equivalent of a dog. Mercilessly beaten down and forever cast away from those whom he adored and dammit he’s pissed about it and wants a little payback. Paul does a bad thing, I’ll admit, but comes back from jail a changed man. He has a dream to reunite his family, but whoa, here’s this other man romancing his wife and cozying up to his kids. And that will not stand. You follow? You think I’m a freak now, don’t you?