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Stephen Amell spent 8 seasons whupping bad guys' asses as the titular vigilante on Arrow (while also getting his own ass whupped), but because the DC superhero series aired on a youth-friendly network like The CW, the action and violence never got too extreme, even in death. Looks like that kind of censorship won't be an issue for Amell's first big TV follow-up, Starz's pro wrestling drama Heels, as the actor has been teasing fans on social media with just how bloody things will get for his character Jack Spade.
Check out Stephen Amell's latest behind-the-scenes look from the set of the currently filming Heels, which features an A+ example of the actor's sometimes dry wit (but not his dry face).
Though Stephen Amell did suffer a slight injury on Heels shortly after it went back into the post-delay production, this is definitely not a real-world situation. Now to quickly get the obvious out of the way: Amell looks pretty awesome, and also like he's in some kind of an Italian horror throwback with all that shiny blood on his face. I can only hope that's his own blood, since it's absolutely everywhere. Even his shoulder. You'd have to get into some pretty specific positions to smear someone else's blood all over your own face AND shoulder. Not that I've tried a lot or anything.
In any case, it's kind of amusing to think about how the blood smeared all over Stephen Amell is presumably fake on two different levels. For one, I'd have to think asking actors to use their real blood on the set is probably against at least one set of guidelines at Starz. Nobody needs that kind of insurance hassle. Then, even within the fictional narrative, pro wrestlers have often used blood capsules over the years to play up the injurious mayhem in the ring. Granted, there's also the practice of blading, where the athletes actually do cut themselves with a razor, usually across the forehead, so that the blood and sweat mix to create a crimson soup not unlike what's splayed across Amell.
Stephen Amell followed up on the above tweet with another slightly less bloody pic, which was paired with an image of the Heels wrestling ring that looks to be set up in an old gym of some kind. And it was all tied together with the actor's enthusiasm over that day of filming being one of the best of his career. Check it out below.
I can't wait to see how Heels handles its small-town pro wrestling, since that area of sports-entertainment is so rarely depicted in TV shows and films. Viewers can already expect to see a big-time WWE vet on the show, with Amell having recently revealed that CM Punk (real name Philip Brooks) will be part of Season 1. Other Heels cast members include Vikings alum Alexander Ludwig as Amell's contentious brother and co-promoter Ace Spade, with JAG vet David James Elliot taking on the role of their late father Tom, who founded the independent wrestling promotion that the brothers are fighting over.
With filming still happening, Heels doesn't currently have a release date set for Starz, but I expect Stephen Amell will mark it down on a calendar in blood whenever it gets announced, so stay tuned for that. In the meantime, let's reflect on the actor's exploits within the WWE, which were pretty fun even if they were hampered by Arrow producers not wanting Amell to injure himself, which he did.