'Supernatural' Season 7: Will Jim Beaver be promoted to series regular status?

spn-beaver-s6-320.jpgWhen the "Supernatural" powers-that-be confirmed that Misha Collins would no longer be a series regular on the show, fans reacted with an expected level of concern. Weeks later, the #SaveCastiel tweets show no sign of subsiding.

The decision to "demote" Collins was a creative one, showrunner Sera Gamble tells TVLine. "We just want to tell a good story and not be redundant and bring you interesting stories that are fresh," she says. "Going into Season 7, we have a new, interesting story that we want to tell to you. That's what's front of mind right now."

In the midst of the commotion about Castiel, we've gotten some feedback from "Supernatural" fans wondering if Jim Beaver, who has been an essential part of the show's foundation since his first appearance in Season 1, may finally be promoted to series regular status. As Sam and Dean's longest standing ally, we've often wondered why he's still credited as a guest star after appearing in 42 episodes of the series.

So will Beaver join the full-time cast in Season 7?

The short answer is no.

The show's core cast has always been very small, for creative and budgetary reasons. Understandably, Beaver's primary concern is for his now ten-year-old daughter Maddie. He tells us that he was once offered series regular status, but that the offer made wasn't substantial enough to offset the cost of relocating his family to Vancouver on a permanent basis, so he didn't accept.

"Every season since, we discuss it, but at present it seems that the existing situation is the best one we can agree on," Beaver tells Zap2it, assuring us that he's comfortable with his place in the "Supernatural" universe. "I'm not unhappy, and the show is spectacularly respectful of me and my needs, and I think they'd give me anything I ever needed if they had it to give."

The rally cries of support for Beaver don't go unheard or unappreciated; they're simply unnecessary. "I appreciate the fan support on this issue, but it's not true that I'm being disrespected or unfairly treated by being a guest star," he says. "Quite the contrary. Supernatural has been incredibly supportive and generous and kind to me, in every possible way, and our current contractual relationship suits me fine."

In fact, his guest star status leaves him open to pursue other opportunities -- he's currently preparing auditions for potential roles as an Irish gangster on "Leverage" and as a pastor on "Drop Dead Diva." His episode of "Love Bites" will air this summer, and last season he also enjoyed one-off roles on "The Mentalist," "Justified," "Lie to Me," and more.

"I've been able to do four or five other shows each season, yet I don't think I've ever missed a Supernatural episode they wanted me for," he says. "I'd not have been able to do those other shows if I'd been a regular."

We can expect to see Bobby back on "Supernatural" in Season 7, of course -- with as much as he's been through, he remains one of a lucky few characters who isn't dead yet. "We have a fantastic relationship with Jim," Gamble told TVLine. "We bring him in as the story demands it. He's basically a fixture on the show as necessary."

In the long-term, since "Supernatural" appears poised to become one of The CW's longest-running series, Beaver isn't ruling out an eventual change to his contract. "If someday it becomes practical on both sides for me to be a regular, I'm sure I will be," he tells us. "But it's not necessary in order for me to be extremely happy. I'm already extremely happy with my position on the show."

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Photo/Video credit: The CW
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