Danielle Panabaker has been a part of the Flash world from the beginning. Even before The Flash premiered as a weekly series, she and Carlos Valdes appeared in the Arrow episode “Seeing Red” as their characters of Caitlin and Cisco. In tonight’s episode of The Flash titled “It’s My Party And I’ll Die If I Want To,” two veterans from Arrow — Stephen Amell and David Ramsey — are now back, with this being Amell’s first appearance in this world since the end of his own series three years ago (Read our interview with Stephen Amell here). Also returning for this episode are Flash alums Keiynan Lonsdale (Wally West, who has a great scene in the episode with Candice Patton’s Iris) and Sendhil Ramamurthy (Ramsey Rosso/Bloodwork).
FlashTVNews was able to speak with Danielle about this big episode as well as what it was like to finish her Flash run. You can find the interview below.
FLASHTVNEWS’ CRAIG BYRNE: How are you doing in general, now that the show has wrapped?
DANIELLE PANABAKER: Great! Obviously, I was so lucky to have a job and steady employment for so long, but I’m excited to see what the next chapter is.
What was it like to be filming the finale?
A series finale is never easy, and in particular, as someone who can on the show since Day One, who has been on the show since the pilot, I’m invested in a different way. I had a fairly heated conversation with one of our executive producers during our filming of the series finale, just because I feel strongly about things, and I feel deeply for these characters and the stories that we’ve told some along the way, and so, my perspective is specific to me.
A series finale is always going to be a challenge, and I really think Eric [Wallace] did a great job trying to leave things on a very hopeful note. I’m excited to see the episode. I’m really proud. I feel like when I look back, I look back more at the series as a whole, [rather than] specifically at the series finale. I’m excited to see it. It was quite a run, no pun intended.
How did it feel that you were assigned such a big episode to direct with “It’s My Party And I’ll Die If I Want To?”
I was just told, “oh, you’ll be directing Episode 9!” It wasn’t until a couple of weeks before we started prep that the story had been broken and I knew what it was going to be.
I was so glad that I was the one who got to tell the story. We were lucky. This was an incredible script, a very excellent script, in my opinion… and one of the two writers, Sam [Chalsen], in particular, is a big fan of Arrow. To have him writing this episode, as someone who really knew Oliver’s voice, I think, was so important, and so helpful, making it such a strong episode.
Many years ago, when you and Carlos Valdes did that get shot on Arrow, did you have any idea that someday, you’d be directing Stephen Amell in an episode of The Flash?
Not at all. I never could have fathomed that the show would have gone for nine years, and I never imagined that I would be directing the show by the end. Not in my wildest dreams. But I’m so glad, and so lucky, and Stephen was such a team player who really showed up and gave a fantastic performance. I’m so glad I got to do that with him.
Is there any chance we’ll see you playing Caitlin again before the show is finished?
To my earlier comment about how I, as someone who’d been on the show since the beginning and as a fan of the show, I have a certain things I want to see out of the finale. I will say as a fan of the show, and again, as someone who worked on the show, I really I was pretty vocal once I knew it was the final season that it was important to see Caitlin again, so stay tuned.
A number of Arrowverse actors have directed for your show and the other series on The CW. Was there any point where you all have gotten together and compared notes and tips?
I think David Ramsey and I were the first to direct, if I’m not mistaken. He and I actually did the Warner Brothers directing program together one summer, so we kind of went to school together, which I think is great and really special, and it was fun to have him on Flash.
You know, we’ve tried to get him to direct flash a handful of times, but it never worked out scheduling wise, so it was especially great that he was around this final time I directed, and got to be a part of that.
I know Kayla Compton directed an episode later this seasoon. Did she talk to you about this at all before she took that on?
Yes! I would encourage you to talk to her about it. I think she’s definitely cursed my name a few times, because I saw and see such potential in her, and I really pushed her to make her short and to get into the directing program, all because I think she’s really capable and very talented, so she probably heard from me too much while directing, because I really, really wanted her to succeed, and I was trying to do everything I could to make that happen.
Folks like David Ramsey have still been directing long after their series are over. Could you see yourself continuing to direct after this?
Yes, absolutely. I would love to. In particular, I would love to go to Superman & Lois, because I think it’s an incredible show, and I love Todd [Helbing] and everybody over there. But also, I feel like I have a sense for Warner Brothers and Greg Berlanti, and the way they like to tell television, so doing one of their shows like All American, I think ,would be great as well.
In Episode 909, were there certain moods and environments from Arrowverse history that you were trying to evoke, and did you watch any like past footage to see how certain things were shot, or anything like that?
I don’t know that I’ve watched my past footage. There’s that fight sequence that happens, that we really wanted to feel like an arrow fight sequence, so we shot that differently than I think we would have shot a typical Flash fight. It’s quite a lengthy fight for for what Flash typically does. There are definitely things that I really wanted to pay homage to, and other moments that we had wanted to do with as much justice as possible [to the Arrowverse].
Is there anything you’d like to say to the fans will be reading this?
I feel like a little bit of a broken record, but I just have so much gratitude, because without the fans, we wouldn’t be here if people didn’t care or weren’t as invested as they are. [Without them], we wouldn’t have gotten the opportunity to tell so many stories. So, thank you.
The Flash “It’s My Party And I’ll Die If I Want To” airs tonight (April 26) on The CW. Take a look at some preview images here!
The Flash: Speaking With Tom Cavanagh Before Tonight’s Finale
Tom Cavanagh discusses his return as the Reverse Flash in the series finale of the Flash airing March 24
Tom Cavanagh was a part of The Flash from the start, first playing Harrison Wells-but-actually-the Reverse Flash, and then giving us a myriad of Wells throughout the multiverse. He’s also proven himself to be a fantastic director, helming multiple episodes of The Flash as well as fellow CW superhero staple Superman & Lois. Tonight, he’s back in front of the camera, playing Barry’s arch enemy once again.
FlashTVNews spoke with Tom Cavanagh in the days leading to tonight’s finale, and here are some highlights of that conversation:
How did it feel to be back? “I think the emotions are probably very different for somebody like myself or Carlos Valdes who decided to leave after Season 6; myself with the knowledge that [I have] this parachute of the fact that I play the Reverse Flash and he’s gonna come in every four or five months and blow up Central City and try and kill the Flash. It was a tremendous situation for me, because that’s exactly how it played out. I got to come back, and see my friends, and put on the suit, and enjoy that. It was just a grand circumstance anytime out to see the crew and the cast and put on that suit.”
On the importance of bringing the Reverse Flash back for the series finale: “It was understood that when we got to the series finale, that we have to include the Joker to the Batman; or in this case, Reverse Flash to The Flash.”
Would he like to play Reverse Flash again? “Reverse Flash, for me, was just a joy to play, as an antagonist or arch-enemy. There’s charisma to that character, and I delighted in. I would suit up again in a heartbeat.”
Cavanagh has pitch for a return on a possible Reverse Flash spinoff project. “Here’s my pitch: What if Reverse Flash, with all his villainy, fell for a civilian and then suddenly that complicated his agenda? Where would he go with his paramour, and how would it affect him? Would he then be able to carry through on his designs of destroying Barry? The reason we didn’t do that on The Flash was because you’d need to call that show Reverse Flash. We’ve got The Flash, which I wholeheartedly support. That being said, I think there’s room in the multiverse now that The Flash is over for us to explore that. And so, that’s my pitch for a Reverse Flash spinoff.”
Is Eobard afraid of any of the other speedsters? “Heck no, and that will be readily apparent in the finale.”
Was it fun to play Eobard insulting Eddie and Hunter Zolomon in the finale? “Poor Teddy Sears. Poor Rick Cosnett. Grand humans, all. And then, they roll on camera and it’s just, like, me taking shots. Teddy would quote them back to me a month later and I’d ask ‘who said that?’ ‘You said it!’ It’s so fast and furious, that I can’t keep track sometimes. I have to say, there’s one descriptor for those guys: It’s ‘tolerant’.”
Any final words for the fans who have followed the series for nine years? “I think it’s great that you bring that up, because often times, when a show has run a long time, a lot of the concentration is on the people who are the face of the show on camera, but off camera is the audience. They are the reason we were even given these nine years. It’s never lost on me. I remember [Superman & Lois and former Flash showrunner] Todd Helbing saying this: ‘These people invite us into their homes for an hour a week, and it is such a privilege and a responsibility. We want to let them know that we don’t take it lightly.’ That would be the message that I would like to basically parrot. Certainly, we’re grateful for the audience showing up week after week, which gave us those nine years. And even though I’m sure we didn’t always succeed story wise, it’s important for us to let the audience know that it was not from lack of trying. We understood that they were the reason we were there, and we were always doing our best to try to tell stories that they would enjoy, and keep coming back.”
The Flash series finale airs tonight on The CW.
Flashback: Revisiting Our Earliest Flash Cast Interviews
FlashTVNews revisits our earliest interviews with the cast of The Flash.
The final episode of The Flash airs tonight (May 24) at 8PM ET/PT on The CW… and we’re feeling pretty retrospective right now. Sure, we have a new interview with Tom Cavanagh that will be posted this afternoon, but beyond that, we’re thinking about the long run that got us here.
FlashTVNews had the opportunity over the years to interview almost every series regular in the show’s 9-season run, at one time or another. Whether it was at a Comic-Con, a carpet for a crossover, or the very first Flash appearance at the Television Critics Association press tour… we were there. Below you can find some of those interviews, starting from the TCA Press Tour and moving down the list. Sadly, we never did get to do video with such folks as Brandon McKnight, Jon Cor, or Kayla Compton… but if you want to see how the cast was talking about the show in the early days, this may be a treat for you. And again, the series finale “A New World, Part Four” airs tonight at 8PM ET/PT.
Candice Patton (Iris West):
Jesse L. Martin (Joe West):
Tom Cavanagh (Eobard Thawne/Various Wells):
Carlos Valdes (Cisco Ramon):
Rick Cosnett (Eddie Thawne):
Grant Gustin (Barry Allen… the fastest man alive!):
Danielle Panabaker (Caitlin Snow):
John Wesley Shipp (Daddy Flash):
Teddy Sears (Zoom/Jay Garrick/Hunter Zolomon):
Jessica Parker Kennedy (Nora West-Allen):
Keiynan Lonsdale (Wally West):
Danielle Nicolet (
The Seal Cecile Horton/Virtue):
Michelle Harrison (Nora WHY DID I SAY THAT NAME):
Patrick Sabongui (Captain Singh):
The Flash: Eric Wallace Would Be Open To Continuing The Story
Flash Showrunner Eric Wallace discusses the possibility of Flash audio adventures after the series is done.
Could there be a continuation of The Flash after Wednesday’s final episode? It’s possible.
Before he landed on The Flash, Showrunner Eric Wallace had been involved with Big Finish Productions’ audio continuations of the classic gothic TV soap Dark Shadows, having written or co-written three stories for the studio. Stories like the ones told by Big Finish can keep a franchise alive – they were the leading source of new Doctor Who stories during the “wilderness years” between the 1996 Paul McGann TV movie and Christopher Eccleston’s debut in 2005’s “Rose.”
When we spoke with Eric Wallace prior to the launch of The Flash Season 9 earlier this year (well before the current writers’ strike), we asked him if he’d have any interest in writing Flash audio adventures one day, and in addition, which character from Dark Shadows lore he would “borrow” to meet Team Flash if he ever could, a very nerdy question that might only be understood by a fraction of the audience reading this website.
“Yes, I would love to,” he confirmed. “Not immediately.. give me a year off, I need a break… but I would love to write a Flash audio adventure at some point in the future, to tell the stories that I wasn’t able to tell during this particular moment.”
As for the second part of the question, asked only for fun? “I already know what the answer is, but I’m gonna qualify it: I would want to bring over Barnabas Collins, but I think the more appropriate character to come on to this show is Quentin, because Quentin is a man out of time, much moreso than Barnabas is. Barnabas was locked in a coffin and then woke up after 200 years and is dealing with past baggage, so obviously, he would have a lot to talk about with Barry Allen. But Quentin is a man of the past who was thrust into modern times, and actually starts to adjust, but a curse follows him, so he can’t ever have a future, so seems to me that there’s a definite story between Quentin and Iris, right there.”
And that’s not all: “Having said that, Julia [Dr. Julia Hoffman] and Reverend Trask are my next two favorites. I have to sneak them in too somehow,” he said, making us wonder why we never managed to get the actors David Selby or Jerry Lacy on The Flash TV show as Max Mercury or a character in that vein.
In the months since this interview was conducted, Grant Gustin has also addressed his Flash future beyond May 24:
“I think regardless of if I put the suit on again or not – and I love this – I’ll be associated with this character for the rest of my life, so if anybody wants to call me about The Flash, I will take the phone call and hear them out,” Grant said in a recent interview with EW.
Maybe this means May 24 won’t be the end after all…