Matthew Morrison Matthew Morrison

Tonight's Glee is the musical comedy's second Christmas outing, but it marks several firsts. It's the first time the series has presented black and white sequences. It's the first time a laugh track will be used to hammer home the jokes. And it's star Matthew Morrison's first time in the director's chair. During a break in shooting January's Michael Jackson tribute episode, TV's Mr. Schuester sat down with me in the New Directions rehearsal hall to discuss his big debut.

TV Guide Magazine: What did you find to be your biggest challenge?
Morrison: Just putting on a different hat. It's a big unspoken spoke rule that actors don't give other actors notes, but as a director you kind of have to. I was worried how people were going to react. The whole crew and the cast were on board. Of course, the first time I was going to give Jane [Lynch] some direction, she raised a finger and said, 'I just want to remind you I have an Emmy Award and was just nominated for a People's Choice Award.' It was really funny.

TV Guide Magazine: When you got your first look at the script, what scene got you really excited to get behind the camera?
Morrison: It had to have been the two acts of the episode that are done in black and white. It's an old school Christmas special a la the Judy Garland Christmas special. It's done with kind of affected voices with a laugh track simulating a live studio audience.

TV Guide Magazine: Did you go back and watch any old holiday specials?
Morrison: Oh yeah. I watched the Judy one and the Star Wars Christmas special. We have Chewbacca in the episode.

TV Guide Magazine: What was it like directing Chewy?
Morrison: Well, there's only one guy who is sanctioned by Lucasfilm to do Chewbacca. He's been doing it for 12 years. He lives in Northern California, but his handler lives in Texas, so we had to fly both in.

TV Guide Magazine: So is this the beginning of a Spielbergian career?
Morrison: You know, for now it's just the one. I don't know if I'd direct Glee again because it's such a monster. And I think if I were to direct again, I would just want to be the director. At least while I'm still learning the ropes.

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