Exclusive Interview with iZombie’s David Anders

Photo Credit: The CW
Photo Credit: The CW
Last week, TNWU got a chance to have a quick chat David Anders.  With several memorable roles over the years, including Josef Bazhaev on 24, Adam Monroe on Heroes, and Uncle John on The Vampire Diaries, odds are you’re already pretty well-acquainted with his acting talents.  Currently, he’s portraying Blaine DeBeers – who quickly became one of the CW’s favorite villains – on iZombie, which has recently entered its second season.  Read our interview below to find out what’s coming up for Blaine this season, and don’t miss new episodes Tuesday nights at 8/7p.m. (CST).

Let’s start off talking about what Blaine’s been up to.  I mean, so far, he’s already had quite a diverse career path. He had the whole drug dealer thing going on when he first was introduced, and then he just kind of became a brain dealer, and now… a funeral director. How long is this career path going to work out for him before he’s onto the next?

I don’t know what he’d parlay the funeral business in. The funeral business is to have access to the brains. He’s got his mitts in a lot of different things. The brain dealing and the drug dealing. He wants … His end game I think is to be King of Seattle, be the Kingpin, take over all the trades. We’ll see how that works out for him.

He’s off to a good start, even with all the deaths he’s caused.

Maybe if it doesn’t work out for him he’ll just quit it all together and move to Africa and work for an NGO and drill wells.

[laughs] That totally sounds like something he would do.


BlaineMajors1e13That would certainly keep people guessing.  We recently got to see the cause of the “daddy issues” he mentioned in the season 1 finale.  Did you know about this father/son backstory at the end of last season?

I thought that was a great little speech that Blaine had at the end of last year. I thought it was just a funny line. I didn’t know we were going to get into daddy issues. I think Rob Thomas told me when we were at SXSW – or maybe it was Comic Con – that maybe some daddy issues were going to be happening.  I was super looking forward to who they were going to cast as my father and getting to work with him, because they really were hell-bent on getting this fantastic actor.  I suggested Rutger Hauer, which I think would have been great, but God knows Robert Knepper just knocks it out of the dang park, man. He’s a fantastic dude to work with; he’s a fantastic actor. Wonderful choice. It was just a treat to work with him. I think we had passed by each other on the Heroes set. I came back for an episode – and he was doing the whole Carnivale thing when he was on Heroes, but I was on it the season before. I went back during the third season and just briefly said hello to him, but getting to work with him and learning from him and playing with him has just been wonderful.

It actually kind of makes sense, in a weird way, that you and he would be father and son considering the villainous type of roles you both have consistently played. 

Makes all the sense in the world.

Speaking of you always playing bad guys, did you know Blaine was going to be that type when you took this role?

Yeah, I did. It’s fun to be the main antagonist. Rob always said I had to take a leap of faith with them because I was barely in the pilot. I just had to trust that he was going to be something more than he was in the pilot, and he turned out to be. It’s just a treat to play this guy. The lines that I get to say out of his mouth… they’re delicious is what they are.  Though he’s equal in his prickishness to other characters that I’ve played, it’s a different smack on the bad guy because it’s a lighter show. The lightness of the show, the material, and the lines allow me to flex my muscles a little differently.  

Gotta make the bad guy a little bit funny sometimes.

Yeah. He’s got a smarmy charm about him you know.

Yeah he does. The fans actually really like the “bad guy” on this show, which is not always how that works out. I think most viewers would be kind of sad if something happens to him.

Knock on wood, that nothing bad happens to him. [laughs]

Now that he’s human, I guess that makes his chances a little more iffy.

He’s vulnerable now.

Speaking of him being human, he was kind of rubbing it in Liv’s face a little bit about all the good things about it. But truth time: does he actually enjoy being human or is he just… putting up a front?

Yeah. He enjoys humanity. He enjoys the food, the sex, the drink. But of course he’s still passing himself off as a zombie. He’s a human in zombie clothes, but yes. Yes, there are certain things, certain aspects about zombie-ism that he misses and we’re going to explore those things as we go down the line.

Awesome! Is one of those things that he misses not having to bleach his hair to look like a zombie?

Well yeah. The fact that he has to go to the salon – or wherever he does it – and do it himself, that’s three hours out of a day. Whereas when he’s a zombie, his hair turns white naturally.

Now he is feeling a little bit of your pain?

Yeah exactly.  Art imitates life.

How is that peroxide issue going for you?

Oh it’s going. I’m probably due to another one in two weeks. I guess I got to go to my zen place and breathe in the fumes and really get a bro out with the guy that does my hair up here.

How often do you have to go and get touched up?

Once a month.


Yeah, once a month. Go to the salon. Get my roots dyed…

Makes you sound super cool with the ladies I’m sure.

I don’t think so.  That’s the thing about getting used to it in my life, walking around Vancouver. It looks great for the character, looks great for Blaine.  David, not so much. I’m regarded like I’m fresh off skid row looking for a needle exchange most days.

[laughs] I can see that.

It’s an acquired taste. Sometimes I wake up in the morning and I look at myself in the mirror and I don’t know who the hell I am.

Photo Credit: The CW
Photo Credit: The CW
Does it make you want to pick up a wig somewhere? It’s Halloween season…

I wear hats often.

Between your hair-dye visits, what’s the vibe on set like?

It’s a chill vibe. We’re all professionals, and we’re all friends. Rose, Rahul, Buckley, Malcolm, to a man, they’re just fantastic people and fantastic actors. It’s just a delight to go to work. They make work easy. Then we hang out all the time off set, so I’m kind of sick of them.

When you can joke about hating each other, you know it’s true love.  So, what’s coming up for Blaine? Will we be seeing more of the father/son dynamics?

Yeah, Angus is coming back. 

Oh, that’s good news!

There’s more good stuff. You get to sit back and watch the genius of Robert Knepper again. Of course I can’t reveal anything, but… there’s going to be plenty of conflict, plenty of high jinks.

As we finish up here, can we talk about the possibility of a musical episode for Blaine? Maybe one week Liv eats a Broadway star’s brain and iZombie has a musical episode?

I promise you … You’re going to hear Blaine sing.

I was actually totally kidding on that, but that is awesome if that’s actually true.

Because I come from the musicals and Diane [Ruggiero, iZombie producer and writer] just loves my voice, they’ve written me a few opportunities thus far, and I think there’s more coming.

Oh, fantastic! I can’t wait to see that.

Get ready. I can’t reveal what and I can’t reveal why and I can’t reveal… shit, I don’t even know if I can reveal that, but I already have. I already told somebody about it.

Does Rose sing too?

Rose has a wonderful voice. We have talked about her. And I don’t know why they wouldn’t. They should have her eat the brains of Sarah Brightman or something like that.

Yeah, and then just sing her way through the next murder case.

Sing and dance… each episode would be fantastic to see.

That sounds perfect.

Photo: Jordon Nuttall/The CW © 2015
Photo: Jordon Nuttall/The CW © 2015
Netflix is currently streaming season 1, but you can catch all-new episodes of iZombie on Tuesdays at 8/7p.m. CST on The CW Network.

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