HVFF London 2017: Stephen Amell (And Friends) Talk American Ninja Warrior, Code 8 And Arrow

Photo: 4YE

What would Heroes and Villains Fan Fest be without the one and only Stephen Amell taking the stage? Nothing, we agree. Let’s jump right into what he told the audience  in the first panel of the day.

Stephen was asked about his appearance on American Ninja Warrior. He said that running the course is terrifying, because they put it over water, which makes it seem more difficult. He also let us in on a little secret: halfway through the course he thought he had torn his biceps off the bone, but still managed to complete it.

While the fans loved having Stephen around, they got even more excited by all the amazing panel-crashers throughout the hour. Arrow co-star and on-screen almost-wife-but-not-quite Emily Bett Rickards was the first to jump in on the action.

After chatting a bit about their love for Italy and food and wine, they were asked about what was their favorite story lines on Arrow were. Emily said she enjoyed when they first introduced The Flash spinoff, because it started a whole new chapter of their universe. Stephen likes the quieter moments on the show, such as this last season’s episode “Underneath”, where Oliver and Felicity were trapped in the lair and had a serious talk about their relationship. He said they had a lot of fun shooting it.

“The only part that wasn’t fun is that we filmed that episode right around the time that I shot American Ninja Warrior”, Amell said. “With my really hurt arm I kept having to just pick Emily up off the ground”.

When asked about that particular episode, and the vast difference between the shooting script and the actual scene shot, Stephen talked a bit more about the ad-libs that they sometimes include in the episode.

“The script is like a tree, and you don’t want to poke a hole in the tree, but you can add additional stuff that they can take, or they can leave,” he described.

He said that often the dialogue is written like speeches rather than conversations. Sometimes they just react truthfully and the producers decide to keep that reaction.


Stephen and Emily further gave some insight on what they would do if they could get a big budget feature-length episode of Arrow made. Stephen said he’d love to just bring every single important character from the show back and see what happens. Emily just wants Batman, who has to be played by Robbie Amell, as per Stephen.

And it was as if he heard, Robbie Amell appears on stage. He quickly popped in to give an update on their shared feature film project Code 8. Stephen announced that Code 8 will start principal photograph next Thursday.

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And because you can’t have a bunch of heroes without a villain, Josh Segarra joined Stephen on stage. T

hey talked about last week’s season finale of Arrow, and how difficult it was to shoot their fight scenes on the boat. Stephen said it was especially exhausting because it was such an emotional scene too.

Josh jumped in and said that another day that was extremely taxing was when they shot the torture scenes in episode 17 of this year’s season.

“[Stephen] was shackled to the ground, those were not fake shackles, those were real shackles”, he said. “We were in that cell for twelve hours, and he would take them off and you could see the marks on his wrists.”

The worst thing that Stephen did to Josh was nothing they did on the show, but related to their shared love for wrestling. They were meant to go to Wrestlemania together this year. Josh had to work the following Monday, so he couldn’t join. Stephen printed out Josh’s face and took the print-out to Wrestlemania in his place.

When asked about more Arrow-related things, such as the theme for next season, Stephen said that it would most likely be family. How would Oliver react if Samantha had died in the explosions on Lian Yu, and he had to become a full-time dad for William.

Stephen agrees that it would be an interesting story to tell and thinks that Oliver is “more equipped to be a father than he realizes”.

The final question of the night was about Earth-2, and whether Stephen thinks Oliver and Laurel could have been together in another universe.

“Everything is different for Oliver if he doesn’t get on the boat”, so Amell. While he thinks ‘there’s an earth where it’s Oliver and Laurel forever.”

He also says a lot of things were Oliver’s fault, such as taking Sara on the Gambit with him, and so it wasn’t meant to be.

Stephen, similarly to John Barrowman, ended the panel by addressing the attendees, and thanking them for their dedication. Take a look at his speech below:

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Verena Cote

4YE's lead events editor. london-based tv enthusiast with a passion (but not necessarily the budget) for traveling and exploring the world. prefers dogs to humans. current obsession: getting into the good place.
Verena Cote
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