Well, right on the verge of getting the good news about Hillarie Burton becoming a series regular for season 3 of White Collar as Sara Ellis, we had the chance to have an interview with her and discuss quite a bit of different topics.
The One Tree Hill alum will be having a lot of quick witted moments on season 3 of White Collar, and chances are, Sara Ellis and Neal Caffrey end up together, if not for the long haul, at least they will be an item for sure.
Here´s what we talked with Hilarie Burton in the interview we did with her
Hilarie Burton (Sara Ellis on White Collar) Interview
Series & TV: Hi. First of all, I have a little, little question about your coffee table that we saw in Celebrity Homes. Do you still have it?
Hilarie Burton: Aw, no I don’t have it anymore.
S&T: Do you have a, a more regular decoration now?
Hilarie Burton: Yes, yes, actually my boyfriend made me a coffee table for Christmas, so yes I have a new coffee table. It’s homemade. I like it much better. It was made with love as opposed to death.
S&T: Right, right. It was a strange episode.
Hilarie Burton: Oh, sure, I definitely went through a morbid stage.
Here´s the video for Hilarie Burton on Celebrity Homes so you can decide for yourself
S&T: Yes, yes. Now to the, to the point about White Collar.
Hilarie Burton: Mm-hm.
S&T: What can you tell me about the other girls in the show? Do you feel there is chemistry with Neal? Tell me about chemistry with, with Neal. Who is the biggest competitor and why?
Hilarie Burton: Oh boy, I think what’s been really wonderful for me is that during my arc on the show, Jeff Eastin, the creator has allowed me an opportunity to interact with all of the other characters. And I have had so much fun in my scenes with the other women, even my competition for Neal’s affection, Gloria, who plays Alex, the girl that’s from the dark side of Neal’s life is one of the funniest, kindest, most beautiful women.
And so I don’t take it personally if Neal is going to pick her over Sara. In fact, that’s a question mark. Neal’s always a question mark, which way is he going to go? And so I can only plead Sara’s case and try to present her in a way that’s attractive, and so we’ll see who Neal chooses, but I think his relationship with all the women on the show is important. And I think the, the banter that he has with Diana is very funny and it keeps him on his toes and that’s when Neal is his most charming, when his game is on.
And I think Tiffani plays such a great big sister character to him, and it shows his softer family side. So I guess my job is to try to show his sexy side. And that’s really not a hard job; it’s pretty fun.
S&T: I’m holding a contest—a White Collar contest in my site and what I asked there is to tell me the favorite White Collar con in the series. What’s yours?
Hilarie Burton: My favorite White Collar con, you know I’m really partial to the Mozzie character. I‘ve always had an affinity for eccentricity, if you will. And I think he really embodies that. There was a con they did with a police officer who’s actually a friend of my boyfriend, Eric Palladino, where there was a crooked judge, and they were taking homes from people. And Mozzie helped Neal break into her office. I’m not quite sure of the name of the episode, but I’m sure somebody will figure it out for me, but I thought that was a really good episode.
S&T: Great, thanks. And I’m also very, very interested in the writing process, one of my favorite quotes from you is from Burke’s Seven and you’re turning to Neal and you’re like, “You’re fun to work with. I’d like to get inside your head.” And he asks you, “So I am research?” And you say something like that. I guess that shows very much the relationship between you two.
What’s your favorite quote?
Hilarie Burton: My favorite quote? Oh boy, let me think. Well, I’ve had a lot of really, really fun one line zingers with, with Matt and Tim, but I think for me the quote that will embody Sara is from my first episode where I walk into the FBI office after having been attacked in my apartment and Sara says, “First things first, I need pants.” You know, just very practical, to the point. Give me some pants.
S&T: That’s great. Is that the way Hilarie is, too?
Hilarie Burton: Oh, yes, I’m very forward. It’s fun for me to play the brassier parts of Sara because I think I have a reputation for being someone who maybe is a little rowdy, a little brassy, a little loud. And so with Sara it gets to be quick and clever and a little bit of a bruiser, that’s really fun for me.
S&T: My question this time around is what show would you like to do a cross-over with?
Hilarie Burton: Oh, what show would I love to do a cross-over with? Oh, boy, I’ve always really been drawn to period pieces. I really thought Deadwood was awesome and I’ve always wanted to participate in a period piece. And that’s actually how I look at White Collar. If you look at the dynamic between Neal and Peter, that lovable criminal and the guy that keeps him in line; it’s a very kind of 1960s classic storytelling technique, and I look at this show like it’s a period piece.
The fashion in it is very period; it’s very stylized. You could take the characters out of Manhattan and put them in the ‘60s and it would still make sense. You have the doting FBI wife at home, it’s a very wholesome, very wholesome show. And so I think doing a cross-over with like Mad Men or something would be fantastic, don’t you? Time warp.
S&T: Yes, that would be great. The dream guest star for the show?
Hilarie Burton: Dream guest star for the show? It’s the boys’ show, I’m the new kid. I feel like being the guest star is my dream. I feel very lucky to even be a part of it so I don’t want to start asking for any favors. But, golly, we all, like I said, come from a theater background so perhaps a huge theater icon, Bernadette Peters would just make my life.
S&T: Hi, Hilarie. Well I’m lucky to get one more question.
Hilarie Burton: Yeah, the grand finale.
S&T: Yes, the grand finale. Listen, I’m working on a documentary about how to make it in New York. What would be the best advice you would give someone to make it in New York in the entertainment business?
Hilarie Burton: I would say the best piece of advice is to find other people who are at your same level, but are trying to make it as well. So if you’re an actor, find a new filmmaker. You just scour the colleges, whether it’s Columbia Film School, or NY, find the photographers that need people to sit for them, find the musicians that need people in their music video. Go to, go to screenings for short films, I think having a curious disposition and also having he confidence to be an explorer will be things that will service you when you’re in a city as big as Manhattan, because the more you dig the more treasures you’ll find. And those treasures are other people that will help you get what you want.
S&T: Great, thanks so much.
Hilarie Burton: Mm-hm, thank you.
What did you think about this interview with Hilarie Burton, just upgraded to Series Regular in White Collar? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section.
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