'Bones': Hart Hanson talks Josh Malina, Twitter, plus Booth and Brennan in the 100th episode
There's a lot going on on "Bones" this season.
Booth's post-brain surgery struggle to contain his feelings for Brennan has introduced a new layer for the show to explore, and with the series' 100th episode coming up, plus a few familiar faces returning, we decided we'd check in with show creator, Hart Hanson. You know, just to see how things are going...
So, Hart, we know that Goodman won't be returning for the 100th episode, but which old friends will we see?
Hart Hanson: We brought back Zack (Eric Millegan). [And] Caroline (Patricia Belcher) will be there.
How are you going to bring Caroline into the episode, since Brennan and the squints met her on-screen earlier in the series?
HH: Well, she's a federal prosecutor [now], so we just pretend that six years ago she was the federal prosecutor in DC [and we see her doing that].
Two of your more frequent guest players, Ryan O'Neal and Stephen Fry, seem to be otherwise occupied right now, what with Ryan doing an arc on "90210" and Stephen in seclusion for a bit. Did that alter any of your plans for this season?
HH: I know where [Stephen] is. He's writing the second volume of his memoir and he needs three months [to finish it]. He's hiding away somewhere to do it. So I don't think we'll have [him back this season]. But I talk to him fairly often -- we're writing something together [as well] -- so if he says, okay, I'll do it, then we will snap him up, because he's Stephen Fry. He's awesome. I think we'll have Ryan O'Neal back at least once. We'd like to have him more. Every time he's on the screen you go, oh my God, that's Ryan O'Neal. He's a huge movie star and he's on our show.
How about Cyndi Lauper? Will Avalon be returning anytime soon?
HH: Yep. We had her scheduled for the [101st] episode, [but] she's unable to do that so we're yanking that storyline out and the next time she's available, we'll yank [whatever else is going on] and put in her b-story. She's awesome. And who's better for a psychic than Cyndi Lauper? She's perfect for our show.
Kathy Reichs, author of the original Temperance Brennan book series, is going to be writing an episode this season, correct?
HH: We've got Kathy Reichs writing our second to last episode.
How was that for her? The television Brennan is so vastly different than the character in her books.
HH: You know, Kathy came into the writers' room where we beat out the forensic stories, and I thought, oh this is going to be a nightmare, she's a novelist. I've worked with a few novelists and they're used to doing what they want to do without a lot of voices. In a TV show, there are a million voices coming at you. But she adapted instantly, she was fabulous. The room beat out her story in two and a half/three days instead of a week. She's so smart and she's such a good writer, it's going to be fun.
And of course, your Twitter followers are very aware that Josh Malina is going to be in an upcoming episode. What can you tell us about his character?
HH: Yeah! Well what happened was -- he's in [the] bin of actors whom [I love], I'm a huge fan -- But I have to admit that when I saw him on Twitter and he said something like we should work together and wait a minute, I don't have a show but you do, I thought, I gotta get him on. And it just so happened that the next episode had a part open: The head of the loony bin. Not Zack's loony bin, but another loony bin. And we don't often have guest stars who can be seen throughout the whole episode. That's just the way our show is, we move along and meet lots of people for a scene or two and that's it. But [the head of the loony bin] is someone who we could use more, and I thought, perfect, because [Malina] plays pretty smart and he plays pretty appealing. And he's a good suspect. It was great to have him on the show, he's really good. Someone should give him a series.
Could he possibly return to "Bones" for a second or third time?
HH: I hope so. Yes.
We do have to talk about Twitter.
HH: Wow, that Twitter online community.
Yes, when we first heard about the Bones tweetpeat that FOX planned, we knew you guys were going to break Twitter given the volume of traffic you'd attract.
HH: FOX really set it up [professionally]. You know, it looked like command central. But about two minutes in, bang, everyone was off the special site that was set up. Those of us who have our own sites could go on and do it, but a bunch of people were out 15 or 20 minutes. It was hilarious.
HH: I know! [Laughs] I looked at the page and I freaked out. I was beside Nick Jonas ! Only on Twitter. [Bones fans] are very noisy, they're very intense!
It's a very fiercely intense, passionate following... and speaking of passion, you know we have to talk about Booth and Brennan. They've had a fake kiss, a fake "I love you" and fake sex. Any chance they'll do one of those things for real before the season ends?
HH: I would say watch the 100th episode [pause] to place everything in a context.
Place everything in a context?
HH: [Laughs] I'm being careful. I don't want to make any promises because I'll get yelled at... The 100th episode changes everything. How's that?
Well, what we know about Sweets' book -- which is the catalyst for the 100th episode flashback -- is that the ending concluded that Booth and Brennan are in love. That's still in the book, yes? The copy that B & B read?
HH: It is in the book. The conceit of the 100th episode is that Booth and Brennan have found a slight factual error in the book that they feel they should bring to Sweets' attention before the book is published and that leads us to examine the first case they did together that didn't go so well.
Right, which was mentioned in the pilot.
HH: Right, yes, exactly! Oh my God, people watch [the show] so carefully. It's going to be fun to make sure we don't mess up.
Will we see Booth and Brennan deal with the book's conclusion that they are in love on screen?
-Reporting by Marisa Roffman
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