The Blacklist's Amir Arison Was Afraid He'd Punch James Spader In The Face

The Blacklist Dembe Zuma Hisham Tawfiq Aram Mojtabai Amir Arison James Spader Raymond Red Reddington

(Image credit: Scott Gries/NBC)

The Blacklist’s most recent episode was a rough one for Amir Arison's Aram. His true love Samar, exited his life to protect him, and in the process, she left Aram to pick up the scattered pieces of a shattered heart. He did not wholly shoulder that heartbreak internally, though. He went out of the episode swinging -- at Red.

In what was perhaps one of the most unforeseen confrontations in Blacklist history, Aram came to blows with Reddington. He blamed Red for helping facilitate Samar’s getaway, and the fallout turned shockingly physical when Aram punched Red. It turns out it was also a scary one for Amir Arison. Discussing the scene with TV Guide, the actor said:

That was the scariest stunt I've ever done in my entire career. Hands down. [I was nervous I would] clock our executive producer, the legendary actor James Spader, in the face. But you know, you take that fear and you use it. . . . James couldn't have been more of a mensch that day. He's always wonderful, and was really supportive and we actually were able to do it in just a couple of takes.

Worrying that you are going to punch your co-star (and boss) in the face has to be upsetting, and Amir Arison had some firsthand experience in the matter. It turns out the punch was initially planned with a stunt double, which wouldn't have been as stressful. But then James Spader ended up doing it. The result, in this Blacklist viewer's opinion, was an incredibly powerful scene of grief made all the better by Spader being there.

If anyone thought that punch would be the end of Aram’s newfound animosity with Red, think again. The trailer for tonight’s new episode (airing April 5) showed Aram making some big moves against the Concierge of Crime. Fans shouldn't be too frightened that Aram may be headed down an inextricably dark path, however. Amir Arison hints at Aram’s actions remaining fairly balanced on The Blacklist, saying:

I think [the writers] are going to do something that honors who the characters truly are without changing who their core being is, and at the same time giving the audience something that I don't think they necessarily will expect.

This is incredibly reassuring to read for fans, since Aram has always been such a wonderful guy. To see him take a turn where he becomes consumed with getting revenge on Red would be a sad long-term detour.

Amir Arison says that The Blacklist will "honor" who the characters are. At the core, Aram is not an angry guy, or at least he hadn't been before he lost the love of his life. Things are different now, so they're bound to get tested. Will all the dynamics get shifted? That is the question.

Another intriguing element is where Amir Arison mentions The Blacklist giving viewers something they will not expect. Aram even going after Red in the first is unexpected, so could there be more surprises in store? How far will Aram go with the war he's angling for in the previews? Again, it warrants stating that things did not turn out well for Mr. Kaplan in that regard, so he should be cautious at worst.

Viewers will learn more in tonight’s episode. Will Aram get a chance to take another swing at Red? Based on the preview, it looks like Aram will be utilizing his cyber skills to level his next punch. If Red thought Aram hurt him last week, he could be in for another level of pain in the next episode.

Find out how the war Aram has waged against Red unfolds when The Blacklist continues with new episodes airing Fridays at 9 p.m. ET on NBC.

Britt Lawrence

Like a contented Hallmark movie character, Britt happily lives in the same city she grew up in. Along with movies and television, she is passionate about competitive figure skating. She has been writing about entertainment for 5 years, and as you may suspect, still finds it as entertaining to do as when she began.