It’s been a long time coming but Wednesday night’s (Dec. 2) episode of “Supernatural,” titled “Just My Imagination,” puts actor Richard Speight Jr behind the camera.
Fans will know Speight as the Trickster/Gabriel as he has appeared in some of the show’s most memorable episodes. While he’s been known to cause chaos and mischief on-screen, this marks the first time Speight has stepped up to direct an episode of television.
“I’ve been wanting to get a shot at the big stage for the last couple years,” Speight tells Zap2it, “My entire career has been based in front of the camera for the past 25 years. I didn’t have anything significant to speak of that I was serious about it, so I decided to go out and prove that I was serious about it!”
To prove he’s got the chops, Speight went out and wrote and directed a short film that did rather well in the festival circuit called “America 101.” It stars Rick Gomez (“Band of Brothers”) and achieved a reasonable amount of success that helped Speight make the transition he’d been looking to make and was soon directing commercials.
“That was the beginning of me cutting my teeth as a commercial director.” Speight explains, “And the whole time I was doing that, I would send a copy of whatever commercial I was doing to Bob Singer and Philip Sgriccia to say here’s what I’m doing now.” His persistence eventually paid off as the two “Supernatural” producers included him in some development talks going into the show’s 11th season.
In an attempt at not spoiling the episode, Speight chooses his words wisely: “This episode deals with an imaginary friend of Sam Winchester coming back to pay him a visit. What’s fun about it is you get to see the origin of the relationship when Sam was young and then you get to see how their relationship has changed.”
As if fans aren’t already sold on the idea, Speight continues, “It’s a lot of fun, there’s a lot of comedy, a lot of quirky energy and also an equal amount of heart and bounded reality that fuels it, keeps the mythology alive and drives the characters.”
Of all the options available on the small-screen, Speight is very clear as to why “Supernatural” was his TV first choice as director and it’s all about family. “Supernatural is as close to a home show as I have and because of the convention circuit and the continual random appearances of Gabriel, I have never not been a part of that show since Season 2.”
He continues, “I feel very close to it from a professional standpoint and a personal one because I’m friends with a lot of the crew members, the people in the cast — including Jared and Jensen — so I feel at home in that universe.”
“Supernatural” airs every Wednesday at 9:00 p.m. PT/ET on the CW.