Category Archives: Interviews

That Time When I Talked To Matt Bomer and Tim DeKay About White Collar

Peter and Neal 1It seems like a lifetime ago now that I was obsessed with a little show on the USA Network called White Collar, starring the ever hard-working Tim DeKay and a little-known Texan named Matt Bomer. Well, it has now been about eighteen months since we bade au revoir (which, incidentally, is the title of the series finale) to the show that inspired me to write fiction for the first time since high school, and also helped me make friends around the world through the power of Twitter. In the years since the show premiered, I have met many of these friends in person, and most of the writers from the show as well.

Over the course of the show’s six seasons, I, along with thousands of dedicated and loyal fans, followed the cast and writers on Twitter and looked forward to behind-the-scenes photos of the hardworking team goof around in between takes. Oh, how I have missed those!

Peter and Neal 2
My visit to New York in April 2013 was planned around the season 5 production schedule to allow me to visit the cast on location, however, a production shift meant I missed out on meeting the cast in person but the writers were kind enough to meet me for a drink in Los Angeles. Despite that disappointment, I was ecstatic when I was given the opportunity to participate in a press call with Matt and Tim (for the second time!) on behalf of LenaLamoray.com ahead of the Season 5 premiere. You can read the full report here but below is an excerpt from my Q&A with Agent Peter Burke and Neal Caffrey about Season 5.

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Seven Questions in Seven Minutes with The Walking Dead Writer/Producer Matt Negrete

Don’t Look Back.

For three years during his stint as a writer on USA Network’s White Collar, writer Matt Negrete made me laugh and he made me cry. Then he left that writers room and moved to another popular show, AMC’s The Walking Dead.  I had never watched the show before, despite critical acclaim, I was determined that “zombie” shows were not my cup of tea. Full credit to my friend, Tarina, for repeatedly telling me that it is soooooo much more than a zombie show. With the announcement that Matt and Channing Powell (another former writer on White Collar) were both heading to the Walking Dead writers room, it offered me the perfect excuse to check out this show, now halfway through its fourth season, and I have not looked back since.

In the spring of 2013, I was fortunate enough to travel to Los Angeles and meet almost the entire White Collar writers room. For those of you who have been following me on Twitter (@valshopaholic) or this blog, you will know just how big a fan of the show I am. Unfortunately, Matt was knee-deep writing his first episode of The Walking Dead (check out Season 4, episode 4 “Indifference”) so I did not get to meet him in person but he was kind enough to answer a few questions recently in between working on new episodes for Season 5.

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Seven Questions in Seven Minutes with “Claire Can’t Stop Talking”

Welcome to 2014! As I looked back on my lack of posts in 2013, I felt utter disappointment at how uncommitted I have been to myself and my readers in the past 12 months. In contrast, my friend Claire decided to take on a Photo a Day project for her blog Claire Can’t Stop Talking. This kind of project takes commitment, and so I thought I would ask her a few questions about her project and maybe this would help inspire other aspiring photogs and bloggers along on their project for this first day of 2014. When you have finished reading, please check out her blog! Enjoy!

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A Conversation with Tim DeKay

Tim DeKay

White Collar star and director, Tim DeKay

February is here and WHITE COLLAR is back.  The upcoming episode, “Empire City”, marks the second directorial outing for its star, Tim DeKay.  As a big fan of Tim’s and the show, I was lucky enough to be invited to join in the press call with him to talk about this episode, the show in general, and just how much of a fan I am (getting up at 2.40am Sydney time!). I had such a great time chatting with Tim on the phone – can’t wait to meet him in person!

Here’s a transcript of my Q&A with Tim

Valerie: Good morning Tim!

Tim: Good morning Val, how are you feeling?

VL: I got about four hours’ sleep but I’m very excited to be talking to you.

TDK: Excellent, likewise.

VL: Last season you made your directorial debut filming in Yankee Stadium and this time you were in the Cotton Club. Where would you like to shoot next time around?

TDK: I’m aiming for the White House. We’ll see if that happens…I don’t know, we’ll see…

VL: Oh, that would require you to be out of state, right?

TDK: Yeah it would…so…some other iconic place in New York City…Madison Square Garden! There you go, that would be my aim for next season – Madison Square Garden. [I hope the writers are paying attention to this one for season 5!]

VL: That would be awesome…Having played Peter Burke for four seasons now, is there anything that you have learnt about Peter or anything that he has done that has caught you most by surprise?

TDK: Hmm…that’s a good question…what has caught me by surprise about Peter…I’d have to say I’m always surprised and challenged by his ability to balance between doing what’s right for Neal and doing what’s right for the FBI. The writers have been able to have Peter continue to walk down that line between being a friend to Neal and having to answer to his job as an FBI agent.

VL: This season has been very much about Neal’s back story and I don’t think the writers have reconvened for season 5 yet but are we likely to see more of Peter’s back story? Does he have some dark and seedy past we’re going to discover in season 5? Continue reading

Good Morning Jeff Eastin!

Halfway through my birthday month and I have got the best gifts already.  First off, I got a new job (yay!) which means I can finally start planning the vacation I had been coveting for the past two years (double yay!).  Secondly, a week ago, I received a most fantastic surprise birthday present from my fellow blogger/writer-wannabe/conspiracy theorist, Ceil, who had apparently been planning this surprise for three months (more on that another time).

The latest “gift” required a 4.30am alarm this morning, and an international phone call to join in a press chat with none other than my favourite TV showrunner, Jeff Eastin – creator and executive producer of WHITE COLLAR.  How many people can say they have talked to their favourite writer whilst in bed? OK now I know I’m going too far with this and I don’t want to find my next gift in the form of a restraining order.

So, a word of warning, this piece of writing is the result of lack of sleep and over-excitement from this morning so I apologise in advance that there will be grammatical errors, possibly incomplete sentences and may not make complete sense (I have voices in my head arguing about White Collar conspiracy theories).

Armed with my long list of questions and being a little smarter this time around (my first press call was with the funny, talented and generous actor, Willie Garson), I managed to score myself second in line for the call.  Being a bundle of nerves and trying to keep my brain and my mouth in sync at 5.30 in the morning proved more difficult than I expected.  Maybe it’s time to use “English is my second language” as an excuse…

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White Collar Season 4 Interview With Willie Garson

Willie Garson White Collar S4 promo

There are very few people I would get up at 4.30 on a cold wintry morning for (in case you’re new to my articles, I live in Sydney, Australia).  Willie Garson is one such person.  I had the opportunity to join in a press call with Willie on Monday who is one of the stars of the USA Network hit WHITE COLLAR.  And yes, I am taking the liberty to call him “Willie” rather than “Mr. Garson” because, as of right now, I feel like we are old pals, and I say this because when I introduced myself on the call, his response was “aaaaahhhh, is this ‘valshopaholic’?” (for the uninitiated, that is my Twitter handle).

The challenge with participating in a conference call is that, if you are farther down the line for your turn to ask a question, someone else may have already asked the question you had prepared.  And so, in my usual nutty fashion, I tried to think of the most “out there” questions – without scaring him, of course!

So here goes…

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