Oh, and in case you hadn’t heard, earlier in the year the show was renewed for Seasons 5 and 6!
Some tidbits from the Paley panel:
Per creator/executive producer Matt Nix, the new character of Jesse (played by Coby Bell) will NOT be in a love triangle with Michael and Fiona. Yay!
Episode 3 of the new season has star Jeffrey Donovan taking his first stab at directing. Due to the nature of the shooting schedule (7 day prep, 7 day shoot), this was the only one open to him. Or as Jeffrey quipped, "That’s what they said."
One of the reasons Jeffrey got the role of Michael Westen is because he came into the screen test/audition with an abundance of self-confidence. One of the casting team remarked, "That was the most confident audition I’ve ever seen! Does he know there are other people auditioning for the role?"
Jeffrey’s favorite undercover alias is Michael McBride, in part because they were able to create more of a backstory for McBride with Fiona.
The show has some famous fans: John Mahoney called and asked to be on the show, which led to his recurring role as Management. Upcoming guest star Burt Reynolds also called for a part and this season he will guest as an old spy who could be a glimpse into Michael’s future.
While Burn Notice may have people clamoring for roles now, in the beginning there was a lack of recognition/enthusiasm by two of its co-stars. About three months after filming the pilot, the show was picked up. They called Sharon Gless (Madeline Westen) to let her know and her response was "What show?" Bruce Campbell (Sam Axe) was called and his response was "What show? Oh, that thing in Miami?"
For the voiceovers, Jeffrey imagines himself teaching a seminar for spies to keep the tone from being too didactic or condescending. As he’s recording he finds he does large arm movements and acts as if he’s speaking to a large audience even though it’s just him in a 4’x4′ room. He thinks Michael’s tone is "mockingly self-aware."
While they do use stunt doubles on the show, sometimes they really aren’t needed. In the Season 3 finale, there is a fight scene where Michael does a flip off the side of a van. Jeffrey, who has a martial arts background, came up with the concept and demonstrated the flip to the stunt double, which of course negated the need for the stuntman to do it!
Why does Michael eat so much yogurt? According to Michael Wilson, their tech/security consultant, yogurt is like a military MRE (Meal, Ready to Eat).
For more insights to the show, please watch the video interviews below. The Part 1 interviews were conducted by me, Salena, and Part 2 by Libya El-Amin, host of Whedonopolis’ TV Campfire Podcast, which is available on this site as well as iTunes.
Are you excited for this new season of Burn Notice? What do you think about introducing Jesse as a fourth wheel? Share your comments below.