Stephen Amell is the iconic star of Warner Bros. TV’s DC Universe as Oliver Queen on Arrow. Last season Oliver rode off into the sunset (also known as Green Lantern’s Coast City) with his crime fighting partner and love interest Felicity Smoak (Emily Bett Rickards).
Amell has promised a transformed Oliver Queen for the upcoming fourth season, and has heavily hinted at a full transition into the Green Arrow character from DC Comics. The actor is also currently filming TMNT 2 as fan favorite character Casey Jones.
With Amell’s scheduled appearance on tonight’s WWE Raw, it seemed like a good time to share our interview with the actor from San Diego Comic-Con 2015 inside the Arrow press room. You can read all the Starling City highlights below.
Do you feel Oliver is transformed after the events of Season 3?
He is. The first three seasons closed a chapter for Oliver. He’s made a bunch of decisions that… well, he made the decision to walk away. It doesn’t get any more profound and final than that. It doesn’t mean that he can’t come back.
But he was so defined by the hooded vigilante persona. Which, as we saw in Season 2, the first time he put on that hood, that version, the killer version, the remorseless version, the one that wanted to do everything on his own, because any time he trusted someone, that person turned against him, or split aside from him. That person’s gone. He can’t exist anymore.
So even if Oliver encounters dire circumstances – and it is our show, so he will, almost immediately – he will handle them in a different way.
Can you tease anything about the flashbacks for the next season?
The ratio will be what the ratio is. It’s almost always the same. We will always have flashbacks. They won’t always be Oliver’s flashbacks, which is always a real treat for me, because I get some time off. I can’t really tease anything about the flashbacks other than I am sure we will do a flashback heavy episode like we always do, but [Oliver] ends up in an interesting spot this year.
Which portion of the flashbacks do you think reveal the most to you as an actor about Oliver’s character?
You know, that relationship with Slade (Manu Bennett) at the end of the second season was so transformative, but probably more the first season when he had to sack up and actually do something. But for people who remember the pilot and remember the first scene of the show where we find Oliver, long hair, beard, looking like he had been on that island the entire time – something happens in this season that’s gonna make you go, “Uh, what?”
You’ve been so outspoken on so many social issues in your own life. What do you think Oliver Queen’s reaction would be the recent same-sex marriage law?
I’ll tell you something right now, if you wanna know Oliver Queen’s public policies, you’re gonna love Season 4.
What are some of your favorite moments that you and Emily Bett Rickards (Felicity Smoak) added in to make the relationship more real?
Well, they don’t stand out necessarily, because they’re always small moments, but I think I left in episode 9 last year to go fight Ra’s [al Ghul], I don’t know that it was scripted that I kissed her on the forehead. But it’s those little things, often times they are going to write, “One person talks and no one interrupts and the other person talks, and no one interrupts,“ and that’s not how life works! Right?
If someone intimates during a course of speech, it’s not totally uncommon for someone to go, “like,” “yeah,” “no,” “of course,” “great,” “sure,” “fine,” and so on. So I always try to throw those in and with Emily, it’s always tended to be physical things like her touching my shoulder, or her mentioning that she dyes her hair and it wasn’t scripted that I lean back and go, “Yep!” It’s those little things.
Will you do another “fight cancer” campaign?
Probably going to do another campaign this fall. I don’t know what it’s for yet, but another campaign for sure.
Is the action easy or tougher going into this season for you?
You know, I’m better at the action, because I am better at learning fight scenes fast. And I’ll tell ya, after this hiatus, if Oliver needs to fight with a hockey stick or a baseball bat, he’s all good! Does that make sense?
Arrow returns for its fourth season on October 7th, exclusively on The CW.