'Halloween Wars' Justin Willman: 'It's a busy time for magicians'

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justin-willman2-halloween-wars-food-325.jpg Zap2it: What's the best advice you could give to a team on "Halloweeen Wars"?

Justin Willman: A lot of times a team will have a member who is their breakout star, but that only gets you so far if they're not able to work together as a team. The best thing to do is to be a team player and not try to be the center of attention. The best designs are the ones that are cohesive, where the cake and the candy and the pumpkin all come together with quality and style to create a single piece. If the pumpkin carver is the unquestioned star, the results will look kind of lopsided.

Zap2it: Are you and the judges with the contestants during the entire creation process?

Justin Willman: We're there almost all that time. We're there for all of the small scare, because it's important for [the judges] to see the whole process of that. For the long one, which is five-plus hours, the judges and I take a one-hour break in the middle, although the teams continue working the whole time. It may seem like it would get kind of long and boring for us to sit there for hours just watching, but it's actually pretty enthralling.

Zap2it: Do you celebrate Halloween in any big way?

Justin Willman: The past couple of years I've always been working on Halloween, because it's a busy time for magicians [like me]. But when I'm not, I do love "haunting up" the house and greeting trick-or-treaters.
Photo/Video credit: Food Network