.: A Witch's Tale :.

It's been quite a year for Holly Marie Combs! Not only is the Charmed actress currently shooting the seventh season of the hit show, she also recently gave birth to a beautiful baby boy. In an exclusive interview with Charmed Magazine, David Waldon chats to the lovely Holly about motherhood, life as the eldest Halliwell sister, Piper, and Charmed's continued success.

Holly Marie Combs looks exhausted, and for a split second you wonder why. Sure, Holly plays Piper Halliwell on Charmed, a show that requires a lot of her presence, but she also shares the stage with her two on-air sisters, Alyssa Milano (Phoebe Halliwell) and Rose McGowan (Paige Matthews), so it's not like she's the sole lead. Besides, it's only the second episode of the new season they're working on, didn't she just have a couple of months off on her lonesome? Well, Holly, 30, had time off to be sure, but she definitely wasn't lonesome. That was quality time spend getting to know the new magic man in her life, a tiny bundle named Finley who arrived into the arms of Holly and her husband, former Charmed crewmember, David Donoho, back in April. So while she is a bit pooped, she has justification. Oh yeah, she's also the happiest she's ever been, which makes bugging her for a conversation between shots on the show's faux, but cozy sun porch, not as annoying as it might otherwise have been.

Charmed Magazine:

How has being a mother affected your job, particularly as you're playing the mother of two on Charmed?

It's definitely a lot easier to play the motherly instincts, because I didn't really feel like it happened before, so it was hard being the only mother on the show. And now, it's true. It's just something that happens instinctually. It's suddenly, like, a baby comes out and he's your favorite person on Earth, and it just comes natural.

Was it hard coming back to work after the summer off with your son?

Oh yeah, it was hard. And usually I'm the first one to want to go back to work, because I really like what I do, and I like my job on the show. But this is the first time in my life where I kind of had some heartache about coming back, because as much as I love my job, I love my son more, and that's what I wanted to do. You get this weird mother thing where you just want to sit and stare at them, and you do, and people will be talking to you, and you don't hear them, and you're oblivious to everything around you. You just want to sit there and stare. It's the strangest thing. You're transfixed!

So the days you bring Finley to work with you, are those days where nothing gets done because he's the center of attention?

That's what Alyssa says, that we'd be stuck in the baby trailer just looking at him, and we wouldn't come out. [Laughs] But we've been pretty good, and thankfully he's been pretty good and has adapted really well, and he can sleep anywhere, and he's doing good - which in turn will mean that I will be doing good.

Where's he today?

He's at home today, because I'm getting a bit of a cold, I think, and I wanted to be around him as little as possible, because I think I'll just be devastated the first time he gets sick.

At the same time you have this joy at home, you also have the thrill of Charmed going into its seventh season. As the elder stateswoman of the show, how are you taking that?

You know, it's hard to process it. It just seems like yesterday that we started doing the show. It doesn't seem like it's been so long. But you look back on all the different episodes we've done and how much we've changed, and I guess it has been seven years. But it really doesn't seem like it. It's been a fun run.

Was there a point when you knew it was going to be a fun run, that Charmed really had legs?

You know, we never had that much confidence in ourselves, and I don't think a lot of people had a lot of confidence in the show. And it wasn't until our debut ratings came in that we had any idea how well it was going to do. And by that time, we were probably six months into it. We had been filming a lot of episodes by the time we finally aired. And so it was a surprise. And the, still, you never know if you're just going to be a flash in the pan for the first season and then start to tank or not. And it somehow has staying power, and we're not really sure why.

If you had to guess, what would you say is Charmed's success?

I think, for me, it's that we enjoy what we do, and I think it comes through, and we always have fun. We don't always get as much done as we should, but we definitely get a lot of fun done, and it comes through. Because we're just being goofy and ridiculous, and we're put into these ridiculous circumstances, and it's fun. And we're not afraid to make fun of ourselves, which always helps. It's not like we're being all glamorous, you know, with our machine guns or stuff like that. We're falling over stuff and doing pratfalls and ridiculous things.

It's not often you see on beautiful actress willing to be silly or clumsy on TV, let alone three.

Oh yeah, there's only so long in the day when we can all be graceful, and then all pretenses fall to the side.

So there's a point in the day when things just fall apart?


What will be the theme of this new season? Will it be even lighter after the tumult of last year?

You know, I don't know. They don't like to tell us too far in advance what they have planned for us, because by then we could disagree with them. So they like to keep us guessing. Obviously, my family is growing, and it's funny, because I have the baby at home, and then I have the babies at work. I'm just surrounded by babies, suddenly! [Laughs] I'm someone who went from not being around children at all to being surrounded by them, and it's just great.

It's safe to say that Charmed has more episodes behind it than in front of it. Where would you like the show to go in the next couple of season, should it continue beyond season seven?

Well, I want to end the show with some responsibility. By that I mean, responsibility to the fans who've been with us and watched the show forever, and really have an ending to the story, have it be planned, you know. Because that was the horrible thing with my other show, with Picket Fences, that it was canceled so suddenly that we didn't have enough time to wrap up the show in the way that it should have been properly done and that the fans deserved for it to be. So hopefully we will be able to do that with this show.

Finally, we have to ask you about your Piper action figure. Surely that has to be a sign that Charmed has entered the Zeitgeist of popular culture?

Yeah, I guess so. It's hard for us to grasp, because we're encapsulated in this little, little world on the set, and we rarely go out to stores where we would see them on the shelves. But I'll tell you a funny story. When we were walking through the new Sherman Oaks Galleria the other day, we were going to the Cheesecake Factory, actually, I was walking with my friend, and I just looked at something out of the corner of my eye, and in this storefront was a life-size cardboard cutout of myself looking at me. And I just looked at it and screamed out loud. And David goes, "What?" And I couldn't explain to him what I had just seen. I just went, "Ahhh!" And he looked and went, "Oh my God!" And it's funny, because that cardboard thing is a little bit taller than I am. [Laughs] David went, "What are you, standing on an apple box underneath that dress?" I went, "Maybe I was, I don't remember." So that was really weird, just walking down the street and you look and you see - it was like my evil twin standing in the window looking at me!

~ Credit goes to Rebecca for typing this up for the site. Thank you!