Tuesday, November 1, 2011
MERLIN is back on TV screens with the long awaited fourth season of the enjoyable series. The man behind the young magician, COLIN MORGAN tellsRACHEL BARNES about the future of the series, meeting die-hard fans and his continuing passion for theatre.
With Merlin recently commissioned for a fifth season, Colin Morgan says he could never have fathomed this amount of success. The show has taken off all over the world and developed the kind of wide (and avid) fanbase that most TV series can only dream of. “It’s something, as an actor, you can’t think too much about in a way, you just have to think about the job you do and hope that it transcends on screen and that’s something I think that’s really worked with Merlin,” Morgan says.
Morgan didn’t know much about the Arthurian legends before Merlin, so he began reading the traditional texts alongside other more modern replications of the stories. The legends have never really been told the way that Merlin is telling them – in a kind Smallville-style ‘before they were famous’ way – but Morgan says his research showed him that’s exactly why they’re so successful. “They’re retold in different ways and I don’t think that they’ve ever been told quite this way … with the legends before they were legends,” he explains. “The research informed me that I had free reign over the role and could do whatever I wanted in a way.”
The fourth season of Merlin is the darkest season yet and finally sees the characters move closer towards becoming the legends that everyone knows. Merlin has the biggest challenge in the series yet as he fights to keep his secret while he matures into his true role. “Everyone’s slotting into their places and becoming those legends that they’re going to become. For Merlin that means becoming that kind of wise advisor-type role. He’s suddenly getting this information from god only knows where that he uses to inspire Arthur and lead him, and Arthur finds himself in situations where he needs that this year,” Morgan says.
Though filming for season five starts in March next year, Colin says he has absolutely no idea what’s in store. “Last year for series four I only knew the first three episodes when we started.” He isn’t in a rush to get back to filming and is enjoying a well-deserved break. “At the minute I’m doing a bit of seeing people and having a bit of a life,” he laughs.
During the break between the two seasons Morgan is coming Down Under to attend Supanova conventions across the country. He is well travelled in the comic convention scene and thinks they are brilliant events. The amount of support actors receive from fans at these gatherings is amazing, and can sometimes even go that extra mile. “I’ve heard there’s a massive support for Merlin in Australia at the minute so I’m looking forward to getting out and meeting everyone,” he says.
From younger fans only knowing Morgan as Merlin to older fans who have varying degrees of dedication, comic conventions house them all and Supanova is sure to be no exception. People have even gone so far as to dress up as Merlin, a girl once cutting her hair the same and even putting in some contacts to make sure she had the same colour eyes. “That’s dedication right there,” Morgan says.
“It’s initially quite shocking but afterwards you think well actually she put a lot of effort into that, it’s pretty amazing. At these events you never know who you’re gonna meet,” he laughs, “or what you’re gonna meet. But that’s what is great about these things.”
You can pre-purchase tickets to SUPANOVA fromwww.foxtix.com.au and get further program information fromwww.supanova.com.au.