'The Blacklist's' Megan Boone: 'James Spader believes in me more than I believe in myself'
And how could it not be? NBC's Monday crime drama is one of the season's new hits, with strong ratings (including those from post-broadcast DVR viewings, where the show has set a couple of records) and positive reviews ... and a breakout star in Boone as novice FBI profiler Elizabeth Keen, who's drawing interest and information from enigmatic ex-fugitive Raymond "Red" Reddington ( James Spader).
"I was so elated," Boone tells Zap2it of learning she'd be teamed with Spader, since she was cast for "The Blacklist" first. "He often believes in me more than I believe in myself. I'm expected to carry the show with him, and at first, that was really a daunting task.
"James helped me to know that I could put that energy into the work that we do together. And in doing so, he established a partnership with me that runs really deep and is very trusting."
In her previous roles on crime shows, Boone says she "felt like a female placeholder who gave expositional dialogue about the case, and didn't really have any relationships with the people in the show. There was just no heart in the characters.
"Then a couple of years go by and you forget, and you take a job where you do that again, and it reminds you. It stings to go against your own intuition about things."
Still, the process led Boone to "The Blacklist," especially with the development of her "real sense of who I was. I sort of swung the pendulum back and realized I was only going to pursue things I was passionate about. Literally within two weeks, 'The Blacklist' came across the table, and I fell in love with it.
"It's funny," Boone concludes, "how once you make that decision, how quickly life can throw you what you need."
Birth date: Apr. 29, 1983
Birthplace: Petoskey, Mich.
Current residence: New York
Marital status: Single
Other television credits include: "Blue Bloods," "Law & Order: LA," "Cold Case," "The Cleaner"
Movie credits include: "Step Up Revolution," "Welcome to the Jungle," "Leave Me Like You Found Me," "About Cherry," "Sex and the City 2," "The Myth of the American Sleepover," "My Bloody Valentine"
On James Spader: "I feel really lucky, because it means I'm possibly going to spend years of my life working with someone so wonderful."
Favorite movie: "I would probably say 'Being There,' but that's one of many. I also love 'Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.' "
Favorite television series you're not in: "I have a couple I like, and they run the gamut. I really like 'Breaking Bad,' and I really like 'New Girl.' That's my drama and my comedy that I love to watch."
Favorite singer: " Adele's voice is incredible. Chet Baker also has one of my favorite voices of all time, and so does Joni Mitchell. And Frank Black. Oh, and Stevie Nicks. Can I say all of them?"