Tom Welling almost flew his version of Superman from Smallville to another DC show last year, which could have led to the character teaming up with his cousin on Supergirl — big emphasis on almost.
Fans of The CW’s Supergirl know that Tyler Hoechlin played the Man of Steel in several episodes last season. But Welling, who played the character for ten years on Smallville, revealed to Entertainment Weekly on Tuesday that he once explored the possibility of reprising that role on Supergirl.
He at least talked about the prospect with Greg Berlanti, the producer behind the Arrowverse, or as some call it, the Berlantiverse.
“I know Greg quite well and there had been some discussion,” Welling said. “There was an idea that maybe Supergirl, appearing on that, but it’s such a different show.”
Smallville ran on The WB (The CW’s predecessor) from 2001 to 2011 and starred Welling as a teenage Clark Kent growing up in Smallville, Kansas. The show famously had a “no tights, no flights” policy, and only showed Clark suited-up as Superman in the series’ final moments.
Supergirl, on the other hand, doesn’t shy away from tights or flights. In fact, Supergirl flies and gets her suit in Episode 1.
“I’m older now, I don’t look the same,” Welling said. “Appearing on that show as Clark Kent or even Superman, for me, I would not want to watch me do that at all. They just have such a different tone.”
Some might argue that the Superman on Supergirl is supposed to be a much older and more experienced version of the hero, so aside from Welling having to get superhero-buff for the role, things could have worked from a casting standpoint. But you can’t debate the actor when he points out the tonal differences between the oftentimes grave and self-serious Smallville with the occasionally campy and good-natured Supergirl.
The latter has a budget that can suppose aliens and all manner of superpowers being put on display. And the former was a more budget-friendly depiction of Superman discovering the potential of his powers over the course of a decade.
Supergirl Season 3 returns to The CW without Tom Welling in any capacity on Monday, October 9 at 8 p.m. Eastern.