'Army Wives' Catherine Bell: 'I didn't want them to kill off my son'
Now working in Canada on an adaptation of April Smith's novel "Good Morning, Killer" for TNT's forthcoming "Mystery Movie Night," the actress returns next month to the South Carolina set of "Army Wives" to start production on Season 6 of the Lifetime drama series. She's looking forward to it, though she knows how emotional it will be to revisit the role of Denise Sherwood ... whose soldier son, Jeremy, was killed in combat in Iraq during last season's episodes.
"It's heartbreaking to have people who have sons and husbands over there talk to you about it," Bell tells Zap2it. "It's pretty intense. Those were really challenging episodes to do, but also very rewarding.
"Of course, I didn't want them to kill off 'my' son, and I talked to the writers about it: 'Really? Do we have to do that?' Our show runner basically said, 'You know what? It's Season 5, and it's time to deal with this. It happens.' And at that point, I saw the purpose of it. It's definitely important to show that side of what's happening."
Realizing many actual military families are among regular viewers of "Army Wives," Bell reflects, "You really want to get it as right as you can. The biggest thing I hung onto then was the strength of those women and families. As hard and as horrible as a loss like that is, there is so much pride and so much honor in having served your country. I have just huge respect for that."
"JAG" alum Bell has found respite from her dramatic workout on "Army Wives" in the lighter "Good Witch" TV movies she makes for Hallmark Channel. The fourth -- "The Good Witch's Family" -- debuts Saturday, Oct. 29, and she already has committed to a fifth.
The success of those films has generated weekly-series buzz, and even before TNT runs "Good Morning, Killer," there's also talk of a regular show for Bell as that tale's FBI agent. Plus, "Army Wives" could continue beyond its coming season, which Lifetime should premiere toward spring.
"It's been really, really fun," Bell confirms of having so many career prospects. "It's a nice feeling to have people enjoy your work and want to watch you as different characters. It's lovely."