With Glee fans and actors still coping with Cory Monteith’s sudden death, co-creator Ryan Murphy is struggling with how to pay tribute during the next season. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Murphy expressed his difficulty in deciding what to do next.
“When you’re faced with something so sad and so shocking, what do you do? Do we cancel the show? Do we start shooting in January? What do we do?” he said. “Ultimately, we decided the best thing for everyone is to get back to work and be around people who knew him and loved him so that everyone can grieve together.”
On Friday, Fox announced that the premiere date of Glee season five would be pushed back a week. The first episode of the season will air on Sept. 26 and the cast is set to begin production in August instead of the previous set schedule of late July.
Murphy said it hasn’t been decided how Monteith’s death will be addressed on the show, but he plans to pay tribute to the actor during the season’s third episode. After the third episode he will take a break to plan the rest of the season. He also confirmed that Glee will not recast Monteith’s character Finn Hudson.
“The right thing to do for the show, at least at this point, is to have that character pass. When we do the tribute episode to that character, we’ll have to do it in a way where the cast members will not have to re-create feelings of grief that they’ve had this week — but do it in an upbeat way,” he said. “If we can do this responsibly and help young people through these feelings, that’s the best that we can hope for.”
“It’s always sad and shocking when somebody so young dies, but one of the things that made it even more upsetting is that so many of us who knew and loved him were actively involved in trying to get him better,” Murphy reflected on the intervention they had with him in March.
Monteith was found dead in a Vancouver hotel, on July 13. The British Columbia coroner announced last week that the 31-year-old actor died of an overdose of heroin and alcohol.