For almost 100 episodes over the course of five seasons, Arrow has given fans a lot of laughs, heartbreak, and overall, entertainment. But as much as we see onscreen during every installment of The CW’s hit superhero series, so much more goes on behind-the-scenes when Arrow films long days and even longer nights up in Vancouver.
From goofing off with fellow cast members to shedding some tears during the filming of iconic characters’ death scenes, we got the cast of Arrow and one of the showrunners to reminisce on their most memorable time on set to celebrate the series hitting the milestone of 100 episodes during the mega four-part DC crossover. Hey, on a show that dedicates so much time to telling a flashback storyline, it was only appropriate for the stars and creator to talk about their own personal flashbacks!
“My most memorable [moment] is certainly the flashback that I shot with Susanna Thompson in season two,” series star Stephen Amell told us. “It was a way back flashback from before the boat went down and it was just the two of us, mother and son, dealing with something. That will always be the most memorable because that was my last scene up until that point with Susanna.”
On that same note, executive producer Marc Guggenheim also chose a moment that included Thompson, as well as other dearly departed cast members Colin O’Donnell and Katie Cassidy.
“It’s so hard to choose and I’m going to get in trouble no matter what I say, but here goes,” Guggenheim shared. “I’ve actually been on the set for Tommy’s, Moira’s and Laurel’s deaths. All three times were really, really difficult and emotional.”
But when pressed to pick just one as his most memorable, Guggenheim had a difficult time. “I would probably have to go with Tommy’s because it was the first and in many ways, the first is always the most memorable,” he said. “We hadn’t yet gotten to the point where we were just killing people every season, but it’s always difficult. But I have to say, being on set for those scenes is always incredibly hard on everybody, but Susanna and Katie and Colin all were so gracious and so professional and such class acts, especially on nights like those. If I had to guess, I would think that Susanna had it the worst because her death scene was outdoors on a really cold, not-so-nice Vancouver night. Everyone was freezing but she had to lie down on wet leaves. And Colin was walking around with this apparatus that faked a piece of rebar going through him. It’s always tough, but those are the most memorable. I can’t pick just one.”
When it came time for Emily Bett Rickards, who plays Felicity Smoak, to choose, she went for the opposite end of the spectrum and picked a moment that always makes her laugh.
“Colton [Haynes] used to sing this song every time he got hungry called ‘Donut Time,'” Rickards said with a laugh. “I still have a video of it. ‘Donut tiiime. It’s donut tiiiiime.’ I still sing it.”
As for Haynes, his favorite moments on set were “just hanging out with everyone.”
“It’s amazing, we’re still all friends and we still talk after the fact,” Haynes said. “But probably my favorite is when people would mess up lines. If I start laughing I can’t stop. It would get to the point where they would have to not have me in the scene.”
For Paul Blackthorne, who plays Deputy Mayor Quentin Lance, the scenes he shared with his onscreen daughter Cassidy, who played Laurel, were his favorite.
“I’ve been really fortunate to work here for four seasons with Katie Cassidy,” Blackthorne said. “I really enjoyed the time we had on set together. And all the scenes we had onscreen together were always my favorite. And then this year, I truly love doing scenes with Willa [Holland, who plays Thea Queen] because I don’t think our characters had ever even spoken to each other in previous seasons. We barely said a word to each other and no we’re having these intense conversations, and I’ve really been enjoying that as well.”
Cast member Madison McLaughlin had a short stint on Arrow back in season four before joining the series full time in season five as new Team Arrow recruit Artemis, and she had a hard time picking just one moment that stood out as the most memorable.
“Everything from when I was here last season to Stephen helping me figure out where to hide my gun to this season,” McLaughlin said. “This is my first real season getting to work with Emily and David [Ramsey] and these people I’ve been watching on this show since season one. We’ve had a lot of really good times both on set and off set. We’re truly a family now. I love that. You don’t get that on a lot of shows so it’s really special to have.”
And new season five cast member Joe Dinicol echoed his fellow new Team Arrow recruit McLaughlin when it came time to pick his most memorable flashback from the set.
“Working with Echo [Kellum] and our little crew of Mister Terrific and Wild Dog [Rick Gonzalez] and Artemis and Oliver and Felicity, the long days in the bunker have been a lot of fun,” Dinicol said. “They’re just such fun people to work with. And also watching them accomplish some of the action stuff is really inspiring and amazing. It looks so incredible on the show. Everything that we see on set is really impressive and then made even better in the final product. That’s not always the case, especially when it comes to special effects or action stuff, that can sometimes be disappointing. On this show, it’s ratcheted up 1,000 times by the time you see it. It’s so impressive.”
What is your favorite onscreen moment from the past 99 episodes of Arrow? Tweet me your picks at @SydneyBucksbaum!
The 100th episode of Arrow airs Wednesday, Nov. 30 at 8 p.m. on The CW.
Images: The CW