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Question: Any more Smash scoop other than what was revealed in your preview story about the first two episodes? —JC
Ausiello: Did you hear about the Will & Grace reunion that wasn’t? Because although Sean Hayes will be guest-starring on Smash, it turns out he doesn’t share a single scene with former NBC sitcom castmate Debra Messing. Was new Smash boss Josh Safran worried that putting the two together would be too on the nose? “It wasn’t so much that, but that it wouldn’t have been organic to do it,” he explains to TVLine. With Hayes playing the lead of another Broadway show, “It would have looked like just a stunt because [his and Julia's] storylines are not related at all. I felt like the audience would have known that we were forcing something.”
Question: Any developments in your campaign to get Anna Camp back on The Good Wife. —Melinda
Ausiello: A major one, actually. “We have a [creative] way to make it work,” reports exec producer Robert King. “We’re just trying to see if we can make the dates work.” Complicating matters a smidge: Camp is already juggling two recurring roles (on Fox’s The Mindy Project and CBS’ Vegas) and she’s about to dive head-first into pilot season. “We love Anna,” adds fellow EP Michelle King. “So [hopefully] there’s a way to make it work.”
Question: Safe to say a Glee spin-off is officially off the table now that the New York-Lima split focus seems to be working? —Sam
Ausiello: It’s very safe to say, particularly since Fox president Kevin Reilly pretty much confirmed it on Tuesday. “I don’t think there’ll be a spin-off per se,” he told reporters at the Television Critics Association’s winter press tour in Pasadena. “What ultimately came of the spin-off talk was, ‘Let’s do it within the franchise.’ It’s like life. You have friends, they go off, their lives go on, you maybe lose distance…. We can do that within this world. That’s the nature of the [show's] relationship with the actors too. Some of them want to move on to other things, but…. this gives them the chance to come back and do an arc, to do an episode. It’ll be fun to continue that kind of morphing.”
Question: Will you give us another hint about the couple breaking up from your blind item? —Christina C
Ausiello: I won’t, but Shonda Rhimes will! The Grey’s Anatomy creator took to Twitter earlier this week to deny that any of the show’s major couples will be splitting up by season’s end, thereby narrowing down the list of possibilities to eight. This thing’s getting serious, people!
Question: Obsessed with American Horror Story: Asylum. Got anything?! —Nick
Ausiello: That makes two of us, Nick. This Wednesday there is a pretty significant death, yet another wackadoodle wrinkle with regards to Kit and Grace’s baby and a major setback for Sister Jude. Also, the way is paved for Lana to slip out of Briarcliff — though to do so she will need to literally get past Dr. Thredson first! Oh, and Dylan McDermott out-icks last season’s crying masturbation scene. Really.
Question: Any Dexter Season 8 scoopage beyond what you reported on Monday? —Mona
Ausiello: Yes. Producers have quietly begun looking for a 6-year-old boy to play a 4-year-old boy throughout S8, which makes me wonder if Harrison is going to experience a growth spurt between seasons.
Question: Have we seen the last of Haddie this season on Parenthood? —Kim
Ausiello: Affirmative. “The Christmas episode was the last we see of her this season,” confirms exec producer Jason Katims. “We’re hoping if we come back next season to do more stories with her. It is challenging because you’re trying to be real, and the reality is that she’s 3,000 miles away.” Haddie, or actually her portrayer Sarah Ramos, will next seen as a patient of Violet’s in the Jan. 22 Private Practice finale.
Question: Weren’t we supposed to meet Conrad’s son from his first marriage on Revenge this season? —Donna
Ausiello: Yes, but those plans continue to be on hold. “We can wait a little while to meet Conrad’s first family,” notes series creator Mike Kelley.
Question: Any update on the introduction of Nolan’s mom on Revenge? —Amber
Ausiello: It’s happening… at some point. “There’s definitely an intention to explore all of our characters’ histories and family ties, so the answer to that is yes,” says Kelley. “We have all of these things sitting in a waiting room, and we’re just waiting for the right moment to explore them all. The immediate plan is to start resolving the stories that we’ve got now.”
Question: Big-picture Lying Game question — do the producers envision a show where both twins are out in the open? —Tara
Ausiello: Big-picture answer: Yes. “I don’t want to say exactly, but from the very beginning we’ve called it The Twin Show, and that’s the logical next thing to happen,” explains exec producer Chuck Pratt Jr. “You’ll see in this season we’ve kind of already accomplished that. [Emma and Sutton] are in more scenes together than they’ve ever been; one’s living in secret and they switch back and forth a couple of times. So, we really feel like we’re already doing it. When the story of the past and what happened to Derek and all of that comes out, at some point they’ll have to find out. Mads found out [last season], and other people are going to find out this season until it gets to the point of, well, who doesn’t know? We just want to make sure we’ve gotten the most we can out of The Prince and the Pauper before we move into The Parent Trap.”
Question: Anything on Revolution? —Pete
Ausiello:On the casting front, Eric Kripke tells us we’ll be seeing “a lot more” of Colm Feore (as the mysterious Randall) and Mark Pellegrino (as militia meanie Jeremy Baker). He also had new scoop on ER alum Leland Orser’s character, John Sanborn — that he’s an old scientist colleague of Rachel’s.
Question: Thank you for giving that cool Sweets’ scoop during your new Spoiler Alert!. So in honor of that and the fantastic news of Bones‘ renewal. Anything on Booth and Brennan for the end of the season that hasn’t been teased before? —Cassidy
Ausiello: How about a few additional details about Pelant’s return later this month? “He’s coming back in a really extreme way,” teases exec producer Stephen Nathan of the 24-esque episode. “He has somehow gotten himself another identity and has installed himself in a Blackwater-type organization where he has access to military equipment.” Nathan also confirms that the episode opens with “a body being discovered in Angela and Hodgins’ bed,” adding, “Pelant has [clearly] been in their house. And they have a child. So it really escalates the story.”
Question: Okay, seriously. When are Schmidt and Cece getting back together on New Girl? I can’t stand them being apart! —Andy
Ausiello: You may see some movement on that front by season’s end. But for now, Cece remains “on her path to marry an Indian guy” in light of her prematurely ticking biological clock, reveals series creator Liz Meriwether. “She’s very much setting out for her mom to set up an arranged marriage for her. And Schmidt is dealing with that and trying to undermine her a little bit.”
Question: Any scoop on the second season of television’s most criminally underrated show, HBO’s Enlightened? —Sascha
Ausiello: Amy joins Twitter and takes an unorthodox approach to building her follower count. Also, look for her to forge an unlikely alliance in her mission to destroy Abaddonn, and a major character departs very early in the season. Oh, and Season 2 is absolutely terrific. I watched all eight episode in one sitting. I didn’t want it to end.
Question: How was your holidays? Received any gifts worth sharing about? —KM
Ausiello: Yes, but I’m holding the big reveal for Comic-Con. It’ll be worth the wait. Trust me.
Question: Looking for a Once Upon A Time scoop. —Sara
Ausiello: Your search is over. The ABC hit is casting the 20-year-old version of Regina’s father as well as his fourtysomething father, presumably to take part in the same flashback that features Rose McGowan as Young Cora.
Question: Jim left for Philadelphia on The Office, but does that mean John Krasinski will be off the show for a while? —Graham
Ausiello: That’s actually not what that means. As exec producer Greg Daniels explains, we will follow Jim to his new sports marketing job in the City of Brotherly love. “We’ll show you his office in our next episode,” Daniels reveals. “It’s very different [compared to] Scranton. It’s in a converted old industrial building and it’s all concrete; it’s very cool. It’s a very different vibe from the Scranton office.” Daniels says viewers will see Jim realize “the brilliant career” he always dreamed of. Bonus Scoop: Office producer (and onetime NBC boss) Ben Silverman will recur as one of Jim’s new colleagues. “He’s actually quite good,” Daniels says with a laugh. “I couldn’t believe it. We’re kind of starting to write toward him as if he’s an actor.”
Question: Oh, great TV guru, I’m in dire need for some Scandal scoop. I’ll send you some delicious Costa Rican coffee if you answer me. —Mateo
Ausiello: Rumor has it the Grim Reaper’s about to make a cameo. (And I’ll see your Costa Rican coffee, and raise you a case of Diet Coke.)
That’s a wrap! Please send questions, comments, and anonymous tips to firstname.lastname@example.org. (Additional reporting by Vlada Gelman and Megan Masters)