QUEEN OF THE CASTLE
Stana Katic on how a hit show broke the romance rules to reign over the ratings
STANA Katic has finally got her way. For years, she had been lobbying Castle creator Andrew W. Marlowe to allow main characters Richard Castle and Kate Beckett to become a couple.
The first few years of the hit US crime comedy/drama were filled with romantic sparks between Katic’s NYPD homicide detective Beckett and best-selling author Castle (Nathan Fillion).
Katic thought the next obvious step was for the couple to become romantically involved. She even reckoned they should have a baby together.
Trouble was, no one else on the show agreed with the 35-year-old Canadian actress.
Hollywood knows audiences love unresolved sexual tension between TV characters – think Mulder and Scully ( X-Files), House and Cuddy ( House), Fran Fine and Mr Sheffield ( The Nanny) and Ross and Rachel ( Friends).
Consummate the relationship and you risk a big drop in ratings.
“I was the only one in the cast who said, ‘ We (Castle and Beckett) can be together and it can still be spicy’,” Katic says.
“I really do believe that. That might just be me being overly romantic and a bit naive. I feel like you could get a pair of people together and still have that fabulous passionate foreplay.
“I don’t buy into that ‘curse’ thing (ratings drop if Castle and Beckett hook up). They have done it with (hit Brad Pitt/Angelina Jolie movie)
Mr & Mrs Smith.
“If two characters have a strong point of view and a tremendous amount of attraction for each other then there are fireworks.”
That didn’t convince Fillion, who made no secret of the fact that he hoped the pair would never get together.
“Give everybody what they want and release that (romantic and sexual) tension and that’s when people start going ‘OK, done’,” Fillion said.
A year ago Marlowe finally relented. Castle proposed to Beckett at the end of season five – just as Beckett was getting ready to leave New York to join the Attorney General’s office in Washington DC.
Marlowe promised series six would be full of surprises and he has been true to his word.
The season opened with Beckett accepting Castle’s marriage proposal, but a big distraction came when Castle was exposed to a deadly chemical toxin.
Later, Beckett was fired from her new job by boss Rachel McCord ( House favourite Lisa Edelstein) after leaking sensitive material to the media.
Beckett and Castle are still together, but it doesn’t look like viewers will be getting a
Bones- style wedding episode any time soon.
All those relationship hurdles have helped make Katic’s prediction come true.
Castle has stayed strong in the ratings, with the current season averaging around 12 million viewers in the US. The slump everyone worried about never happened.
Despite six years in the spotlight thanks to Castle, Katic is still something of an enigma.
She was born in the industrial town of Hamilton, Ontario, and is the eldest of six children. She studied international law, global economics and drama before moving to Los Angeles to begin her acting career.
Katic is also something of a Renaissance woman – she speaks five languages and is a lover of history, science, travel, music and art. She adores poetry and claims her favourite movie is Out of
Africa. When I chat to her she enthuses about the classic novel Zorba the Greek, by Nikos Kazantzaki.
Katic reckons she is a bit of a tomboy too – enjoying American football, karate and basketball.
In 2010, the socially conscience Castle star started The Alternative Travel Project, which encourages people to go car-free to help the environment.
Katic has also started her own production company, Sine Timore, which means “without fear”. She may be happy that her character’s romance with Castle has progressed, but off-screen, Katic’s private life is a mystery. She has kept any romance a closely guarded secret.
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