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14 Actors Talents Written Into The Script



On Killing Eve, Jodie Comer’s character, Villanelle, takes on numerous accents, including Russian, American, Scottish, and Australian. In real life, Comer is from Liverpool. The actor revealed that her penchant for pulling off multiple accents actually stems from something she used to do with her dad when she was a kid.

“It comes from growing up,” Comer explained while speaking at the Season 2 premiere of Killing Eve. “Me and my dad, if there was an advert with a silly voice on, we’d always impersonate it around the house just joking around.”


On Stranger Things, Joseph Quinn’s real-life guitar skills definitely came in handy for Eddie’s “Master of Puppets” sequence. It turns out that scene was a bit of a team effort, though — Quinn learned the Metallica song and mastered it, but it was guitarist Aiden Fisher’s hands that were used in those close-up shots.

“I played guitar since I was very young, so I was lucky that I had a foundation there,” Quinn explained in an interview with Collider. “When I read the scripts the next morning, I went out and bought a guitar and manically started learning ‘Master of Puppets.’ On the day, me and Gaten [Matarazzo, who plays Dustin] just got up on top of the camper van, and just got into it. It was very fun. I played most of it. We got a kind of black belt metal guitarist to come in and do the solo because I’m a human being. It’s very fast, but the rest of it, I tried my best to understand that.”


In the Legacies episode, “Since When Do You Speak Japanese?”, Josie is revealed to be fluent in Japanese when she acts as a translator for a demon-possessed samurai, Kurutta. This was written in after the writers discovered that Josie’s actor, Kaylee Bryant (who is part Japanese in real life), could speak Japanese.

“I spoke Japanese a few times on the [Instagram] Live and one of our writers, Penny Cox, saw me speaking Japanese and immediately went to Brett [Matthews, showrunner] and was like, ‘We need to make this happen somehow,'” Bryant explained in an interview with BuzzFeed. “And then all of a sudden, I had a script in my hands. So it was a surprise, but a fun one.”

Bryant clarified that they’re not fluent in Japanese, but that she can speak it “at the level of maybe a second-grader on a good day.”


In The Office episode, “Michael’s Birthday,” everyone goes to an ice skating rink to celebrate Michael’s birthday. In an episode of the Office Ladies podcast, Jenna Fischer (who played Pam) revealed that the writers intentionally chose that setting because they wanted to showcase Steve Carell’s skating skills.

“Steve Carell is a very, very good ice skater. He played hockey growing up [and] he played pickup hockey every week as an adult,” Fischer said. “The writers had on one of their cards up on the wall [in the writer’s room] this fact about Steve being a good ice skater, and they had been looking forever for a way to incorporate it.”

In fact, Carell had actually hoped to make it into the NHL when he was younger. “It didn’t go well clearly,” he said in an interview with ESPN. “You know, you reach a point in your life when you have to get honest, and that wasn’t going to happen. But I enjoyed it. I played through college.”


On Bewitched, Samantha famously wiggles her nose to cast spells. This was incorporated because Elizabeth Montgomery (who played Samantha) had a habit of twitching her nose whenever she got nervous in real life.

According to Twitch Upon a Star: The Bewitched Life and Career of Elizabeth Montgomery by Herbie Pilato, it was director William Asher (who was also Montgomery’s husband at the time) who came up with the idea to incorporate the quirk into the pilot.


In an episode of Criminal Minds, Spencer flirts with a bartender by trying to impress her with magic tricks. This was written in because Matthew Gray Gubler (who plays Spencer) is skilled at performing magic tricks in real life.

“I grew up in Las Vegas [and] I wanted to be a magician when I was a child,” Gubler revealed in an interview with the West Australian. “Then I found the magic of filmmaking and loved acting in my own stupid movies.”

the best thing about being a 12 year old self employed magician with a pantry full of home-made jester hats was the free training i got magically escaping from all the lockers i was stuffed in 🔒🧡🗝



In the Glee episode “I Am Unicorn,” Chris Colfer’s character, Kurt, twirls sai swords during a memorable performance. Colfer is actually very good with swords in real life. “I’m kind of a ninja,” he joked on Friday Night With Jonathan Ross.

“I was a really big fan of Xena: Warrior Princess when I was a kid,” Colfer explained in an interview with NPR. “Gabrielle had the sai swords and I was like, ‘I wanna do that!’ and just really wanted to learn. So the first job I ever got, I used that paycheck, which was about $20, and bought me some swords.”


Speaking of, Harry Shum Jr.’s dancing skills not only shaped his Glee character, Mike, but they also came in handy later for a Shadowhunters scene. Shum’s character Magnus dances with Dot in the Season 2 episode “Those of Demon Blood,” and it’s pretty adorable.


On One Tree Hill, Haley (played by Bethany Joy Lenz) is shown to be a talented singer, but this wasn’t originally written into her character. The idea to have Haley be a singer was incorporated into the plot after producers heard Lenz randomly singing on set.

This, of course, turned out to be a pretty major aspect of Haley’s storyline in Season 2 when she went on tour with musician Chris Keller (and her and Nathan’s marriage almost ended over it).

“I was probably singing before I could talk,” Lenz said in an interview with TODAY. “Musical theater is my passion. If I could afford it, I would just do dinner theater and live a simple life.”


There’s a deleted scene in the Angel episode “Waiting in the Wings” where Winifred (played by Amy Acker) performs as a ballerina. The creators came up with the premise for the episode — in which the group goes to see a ballet — after learning about Acker’s background in dance.


Teen Wolf actor Arden Cho (who played Kira) has said that her background in martial arts majorly helped her perform stunts for the show. In fact, the actor is actually a black belt!

“I grew up training — my dad’s a grandmaster — and so I grew up with it my whole life,” Cho said in an interview with the Center for Asian American Media. “And that just ended up becoming a plus. We learn all our fight sequences usually the day of. … I’m really lucky that my stunt double takes the time to teach me everything and [that] I get to do a fair share of my own stunts. I don’t think that’s always the case.”


In the Friends episode The One Where Joey Speaks French, Phoebe (played by Lisa Kudrow) is revealed to be fluent in French. Kudrow can also speak French in real life — also, her husband, Michael Stern, is from France.


There’s a scene on The O.C. where Sandy (played by Peter Gallagher) publicly serenades his wife, Kirsten. In real life, Gallagher is a talented Broadway performer — he was even nominated for a Tony Award!

It was The O.C. creator Josh Schwartz who came up with the idea to have Sandy sing. “[Schwartz] said, ‘I have got to have you sing on the show,'” Gallagher said in an interview with Billboard. “And my response was, ‘That’s crazy. That would be so embarrassing. Who wants to hear the song stylings of Sandy Cohen? I’d be putting away my socks [on the show] singing ‘Oh What a Beautiful Morning’?”


And finally, on Pretty Little Liars, Janel Parrish (who played Mona) got to showcase her singing talents on a few occasions. Notably, Parrish performed “Gravity” by Sara Bareilles in the Season 5 episode “A Dark Ali.”

In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, executive producer Oliver Goldstick explained the decision to incorporate a musical number into the episode: “All of [the cast] have incredible hidden talents and singing happens to be one of them. And I thought it was a shame that we didn’t utilize that, and [so] we found a way to platform it in one of the episodes in the last 10.”

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