Chris Colfer on How 'Lightning' Struck Twice
Earlier this year, I had the great pleasure of catching a screening of Struck By Lighting; the brave, funny, inspiring and touching film Chris Colfer wrote and starred in. Now, he's revisting the character of Carson Phillips in Struck By Lightning: The Carson Phillips Journal, a novel that serves as the perfection companion piece to the film.
On the small screen, Colfer recently lost his perfect companion (affectionately nicknamed Klaine by their fans) when Blaine admitted to cheating on Kurt out of fear their long distance relationship was driving them apart. But the characters, and actors, recently reunited in NYC to film scenes for Glee's Christmas episode, which is where ETonline caught up with Colfer to talk about the future of Klaine, learn how Lighting struck twice and what's next for his critically acclaimed fantasy series, The Land of Stories.
ETonline: How has your trip to New York been?
Chris Colfer: It's been a whirlwind, but amazing. We got to film at the ice skating rink in Bryant Park, which was just incredible. It was one of the best filming experiences I've ever had. For one, we were on ice skates for 11 hours, in the heart of the city, surrounded by the Empire State Building and the Chrysler building. It was gorgeous.
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ETonline: Are you a good skater?
Colfer: You know, I have only skated once before in my life so I was really, really cautious the first hour. I got progressively much, much better as the night goes on. Now, I'm ready for The Olympics.
ETonline: They say the key to skating is perfecting the fall.
Colfer: If there's one thing I know how to do, it's fall. But every time I would fall, I would try to strike a pose to make people know I was all right ... which the paparazzi always managed to catch [laughs].
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ETonline: What can you tell me about the scenes you and Darren Criss were filming?
Colfer: It's the Christmas episode and that whole scene is a long awaited conclusion to the character's troubles and their relationship. I don't want to say if they get back together or not, but as of right now, they've decided to be very good friends. They're too close and mean too much to one another to ever let anything ruin their relationship.
ETonline: Before we get the Christmas episode, Kurt will take another stab at getting into NYADA. Is he dissatisfied at Vogue or is he jealous of what Rachel gets to do?
Colfer: I think a little bit of both. There's always the question of, "What If?" He never wants to feel like he missed out on an opportunity, and while everything is going great with Vogue so far, he just wants to make sure he's pursuing all his options.
ETonline: Kurt working for Vogue.com has allowed you to work with Sarah Jessica Parker, and tonight you duet on Let's Have a Kiki. Did you ever imagine something like that?
Colfer: What if I said yes? [laughs] I am a huge fan of The Scissor Sisters and Sarah Jessica Parker, but never thought I would be celebrating my fandom of both in the same situation. I kind of lucked out on this one.
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ETonline: Your NY trip has also been in support of Struck By Lightning: The Carson Phillips Journal. Is it a straight novelization of the film, or something else?
Colfer: Carson is killed by a bolt of lightning in the first scene of the movie and everything is told in flashbacks with his narration from beyond the grave. The book is the journal he kept during the last few months of his life. The book is a little bit more intimate. The best compliment I've been getting is that the book and the movie work well as a pair. What you don't get from the movie, you get from the book, and vice versa.
ETonline: A lot of writers who adapt their own works for other platforms will talk about the joys of using that opportunity to right wrongs, or add in things they wish they could have the first time. Did that happen here?
Colfer: Yes! There are going to be so many deleted scenes on the DVD – there was so much from the funeral that we cut because it actually played too sad with them in there. I mean, it's already sad, but with all this funeral stuff, you just wanted to kill yourself because it was so depressing. We wanted the movie to end on an upbeat note, but there's a line that Allison Janney's character has when she's talking about lightning. She says that after her son died, she was reading that lighting is a negative charge between the friction that the clouds carry in the sky and she'd like to think that her son was so positive, that the moment he died, he attracted the bolt right out of the sky. I thought it was so powerful and tragic and sad, so I was able to incorporate that line into the book.
ETonline: With this journal off your plate, has that opened up room for you to focus on Land of Stories 2?
Colfer: Yeah, it absolutely has. I am my own worst enemy, I guess, because whenever I'm writing one thing, I can't stop thinking about the next thing I'm going to write, so I'm very excited to be working on the sequel. Actually, I have my computer open right now and I'm tightening up chapter 10.
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ETonline: Anything you can tease about the next book?
Colfer: The sequel takes place two years after the first book, so the twins are 14, and they have not been back to the Land of Stories, or seen their grandmother, in two years and they don't know why. They desperately want to go back into the fairytale world and see their grandmother, and they can't figure out what is preventing that. Hopefully, knock on wood, [the book will come out] in late summer/early fall of 2013 – sooner rather than later. I know a lot of readers are anxious for the next chapter, which I'm excited about.
ETonline: Once that's off your plate, is there another project waiting in the wings of your imagination?
Colfer: Always! I'm always thinking about my next script is or what the next film I'm going to pursue is. The most fun for me is creating worlds and creating characters -- I just have the best time writing.
Glee airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. on Fox, and to pick up Struck By Lightning: The Carson Phillips Journal, click here!