The Real Reasons Supergirl’s Melissa Benoist and Arrow’s Stephen Amell Were Cast!

What made Supergirl’s Melissa Benoist and Arrow’s Stephen Amell right for roles? The do’s and don’ts of auditioning. David Rapaport, Casting Director of Gossip Girl, Arrow and spinoffs opens up to AfterBuzzTV. 

Alikona Bradford

AfterBuzz TV Host & Writer
Posted On: May 6th, 2020 2:40 pm pst

Maria Menounos
Keven Undergaro
AfterBuzz TV Founders

Founded by Emmy winning journalist Maria Menounos and Producer Keven Undergaro, AfterBuzz TV is the artist-friendly entertainment news platform that celebrates, discusses, interviews, promotes and reports on the widest range of stars, creators and content through video, audio and article publications.

AfterBuzzTV Spotlight on: David Rapaport

By Alikona Bradford

Photo credit: Holly Cranax

Not many casting directors can say that they’re responsible for a show that spawned so many spin-offs that they gave a network a near mini-make over, but that’s exactly what David Rapaport did alongside show-runner Greg Berlanti when they collaborated on Arrow for the CW. This move led to a plethora of comic book inspired shows like The Flash, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Supergirl, and Riverdale, and moved into other platforms with Titans and Doom Patrol on DC Universe and The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina on Netflix. But this is just a small sprinkle of the projects Rapaport has worked on in his many years in the entertainment industry. When I sat down with him, he shared some insight for those aspiring to work with him one day.

AB: Sometimes I feel like a script can almost be like a text message, in that, based on your life experiences you will interpret it a certain way and to someone else, it’s like way left field. So, at what point do you say,  ‘all right, sister, I think you missed some clues.’  Or you know, will you work with somebody? How is that?

Rapaport: Good question! I mean it’s tough, because that’s a real good point. Sometimes you do not get a lot of information. I would encourage; I would watch a show. I would watch the characters, the tone, the pacing, how fast people are talking, etc. And do your best to make a decision. I think one of my biggest pet peeves is when people come in and they just have no idea. They haven’t made any decisions for themselves and they’re expecting us to tell them everything. And one of the reasons that we’re casting it is because we don’t know the answers. We know technically sort of what we’re looking for because we also get the text message version, ya know.

AB: … “it” is a term that we hear all the time. Like, “She has it!”, and I think some people are trying to figure out what is” it?”

Rapaport: We’re trying to figure “it” out.  If we could bottle it up, we’d all be billionaires, you know! It’s tough because I think, you know, like I said, with the studio, networks, producers, directors and casting directors, we all have different points of view.  We have a different sense of what “it” is. I think what casting directors have to do is look for a person who has “it” who everyone will respond to: the studio network, the producers, the director, and the TV watching public. Imagine if you walk into a room and there’s ten men there staring at you, one or two of them is gonna be your type or you’re going to be like attracted to them for whatever reason. There’s a pull to them, right? And another girl comes in and she’s going to be attracted to a different guy. As a casting director, I have to be able to walk in that room and say who here, let’s just say I’m looking for a leading man for a romantic lead girl,. Which guy in here is every woman, every man going to fall in love with? Who is that common denominator that has that “it” factor, that presence, and so for me, I’m like a…not a dating coach, but, what’s the?…Matchmaker. I always joke that’s going to be my next career.”

Photo credit: Entertainment Weekly

AB: What made actors like Melissa Benoist (Supergirl) and Stephen Amell (Arrow) pop? 

Rapaport: I just found them to be unique, hard workers, consistent, professional, reliable. I love an actor who comes in with their own ideas, but also is able to work with others and take direction and also sort of play around a little bit. I love actors who really love to collaborate, come in with ideas, “this is how I see this scene.”  I’d love to see how they do it, and then I like to sometimes just throw a direction at an actor to see if they can take it,  just to know that they’d be able to do it on set. And, those two are extraordinary when it comes to that.

To catch the rest of his interview and hear more tips and stories, tune in on @AfterBuzzTV. And, be sure to follow @davidrapaport and @yours_truly_alikona on IG. 

Watch Spotlight On with David Rapaport here: 

Founded by Emmy winning journalist Maria Menounos and Producer Keven Undergaro, artist-friendly AfterBuzz TV is the world’s largest digital broadcast network and pop culture news platform, producing post-game ‘after-shows’ for nearly all favorite TV shows, interviewing cast and showrunners and providing the widest video, audio and article coverage of shows, content and influencers than any entertainment news platforms in existence

“We don’t just celebrate and cover the top shows, content and stars, we celebrate and cover ALL the shows, content and stars.”

Maria Menounos

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About The Author:

Alikona Bradford is an entertainment host and Journalist in the Los Angeles area. You can find more about her at AlikonaBradford.com or keep tabs on her adventure on social media @alikona_bradford (IG) or @UrsTrulyAlikona on Twitter.

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