The cast and crew of the Fox series Glee were thrown into a tailspin after the sudden and unexpected death of Corey Monteith. After spending some time seriously considering where the show would go, the writers will be writing out Monteith’s character and the show may not continue after its next two seasons.
“I would not anticipate it goes beyond two more seasons,” Entertainment Chairman Kevin Reilly told reporters on Thursday. “Never say never, but there’s two very clear [story] arcs to get to that end and conclude. If we discover a new crop of kids and there’s some breakout we like … [but] right now, we’re thinking two seasons.”
It is entirely possible that new singers will inspire further seasons, as several of the talented new arrivals from season 4 have been promoted to series regulars. Viewers will also see singer Adam Lambert on the upcoming season.
Reilly also said the drama will address Cory Monteith’s death in the third episode, during which Fox will air public service announcements about substance abuse. The fifth season premiere of Glee is set for Thursday, Sepember 26, a week later than originally scheduled.
The third episode will be a tribute to Moneith. “The third episode will deal with the Finn Hudson character being written out of the show,” Reilly said. “That episode will deal directly with the incidents surrounding his death and drug addiction … Ryan Murphy is going to film PSAs with the cast, as cast members, as friends of his, they’re going to speak directly to the audience.” Reilly also revealed they may include some old footage of Monteith in the tribute episode, “It’s a possibility because we do have some of that footage, but I can’t speak to it because Ryan and the guys are working through it right now.”
Reilly confirms that drug abuse will not be the cause of Finn Hudson’s passing, and the PSAs will address drug abuse and how it’s short-sighted to assume addicts only look or behave in certain ways. “When you see some people struggle with addiction, they are easily put in a category. ‘He was dark, she was always a partier,’” Reilly said at the Television Critics Tour in Los Angeles. “Cory was big open life force. He was not a problem, he looked straight as an arrow. He was open about his addiction in the past, just not as open about it in the presence. Everybody was shocked, but this was an accident. It happened to someone struggling with addiction.”
Huffington Post reveals the first two episodes of Glee Season 5 will be Beatles themed and will be very “celebratory.” “It’s a little difficult to come out of the gate right away then have to recover.” Says Reilly, “We’ll have the Cory episode, then we’ll go on hiatus for three weeks for the World Series, and that gives us a natural break to reset.” Music sales from the episode will go into a fund in Monteith’s name.
Glee Season 5 premieres Thursday, September 26 at 9 p.m. ET on Fox.