Tim DeKay Talks Directing Tonight's 'White Collar'
One of DeKay's favorite moments from tonight's White Collar involves recurring guest star Diahann Carroll, who plays Neal's landlady, June. "Diahann Carroll sang two songs at the Cotton Club, so I got to direct her to sing a couple songs," he explained. "There was a wonderful moment where we had pre-recorded her singing the song so that she didn’t have to sing it live the day we shot it, and I had musicians there just in case.
"We started rolling for her to sing the song and she had the earpiece on and she started singing. I looked at the sound guy and he brought down the pre-recorded version and the other musicians started playing, and she just sang that whole song live. The whole cast and crew got a mini concert. It was great."
The actor also addressed one of the most popular topics of conversation when it comes to White Collar: the ever-evolving partnership between Peter and Neal, which has now been tested immensely by Neal having lied to Peter at the behest of Peter's wife, Elizabeth.
"If you go back, Neal and Peter have never lied to each other to their faces," he said. "Now, one might argue that there’s been many lies of omittance, there have been a lot of lies, in so far as not coming forth and telling the other person what’s going on. But regardless, if Peter has ever asked Neal a point blank question, he has never lied to his face. But in this particular instance, Neal was given the green light by Peter’s wife to lie.
"I think the writers did a great thing there. I think it’s important, and it’s great, that there is always that dynamic. Peter and Neal are always on the case, enjoying each other’s company, although they’ll never admit it. Two dear friends, best friends, and yet there is always a secret. There’s always something going on. There’s a chess game going on and they’re not quite revealing everything that needs to be revealed. And most of the time, those reveals are not given to each other because they think it’s benefiting the other person by not telling them.
"I think the trust issue will always be there. It just never is one hundred percent; it can't be. Neal’s a criminal. No matter how much we love him, he has stolen a lot of things from a lot of people, and Peter is an FBI agent, so that’s wonderful. There is a trust issue when it comes to that. When it comes to other things they can trust each other implicitly, but when it comes to that, when it comes to those kind of dealings, they’ll never trust each other implicitly.
Many surprises have come out of Neal's past, including most recently the reveal of his father, and DeKay said that he'd like to see a reveal or two about Peter as well. "I’ve talked to some of the writers about this, and I would love to have some things uncovered about Peter that would be surprising to the audience," he said, but added that delving into the backstory "would only be so that we could keep the story moving forward."
"I’m surprised and challenged at his ability to balance doing what’s right for Neal and doing what’s right for the FBI," he added. "The writers have been able to continue to have Peter walk that line of being a friend to Neal, and yet having to answer to his job as an FBI agent."
White Collar is new tonight at 10 PM ET/PT. You can also follow Tim DeKay on Twitter (@TimDeKay).
(c)2013 Brittany Frederick. Appears at Starpulse with permission. All rights reserved. No reproduction permitted.