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 Exec. Producer: Why Death Had To Come To ‘Army Wives’

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Julia R.

Nombre de messages : 2164
Localisation : On the Stars
Date d'inscription : 28/08/2007

MessageSujet: Exec. Producer: Why Death Had To Come To ‘Army Wives’   Sam 9 Avr - 14:01

Exec. Producer: Why Death Had To Come To ‘Army Wives’

Lifetime’s “Army Wives” is the rare television show that is peaking, both creatively and in popularity, in its fifth season. A recent episode in which one of the show’s original characters, Jeremy (Richard Bryant), was killed in combat in Afghanistan garnered the series’ highest ratings ever. The drama fills a unique niche in the cable landscape. Not only is it one of the few series about military life, it’s neither a procedural nor a dark character study. It’s an unabashedly earnest and emotional show about realistic situations. Executive producer Jeffrey Melvoin explained why the series decided it was time for a combat death, how the loss of Jeremy will impact every other character on the show, and why this is “Army Wives” best season yet.

“Army Wives” Scores Record High Ratings

On How The Decision Was Made To Kill A Main Character: I had a discussion with Joann Alfano and Nina Lederman of Lifetime while we were on hiatus between seasons four and five. When we talked about where the show could go in season five, and we talked about it being a shorter season – they wanted to do thirteen episodes – and we talked about after four years how mature the show is now, and what could we do to maximize that. And my feeling was that after four years it was time that we show a casualty within the families of the show. We’ve had casualties before, but not of a service person who is immediately close to anybody. In season five it wouldn’t look cheap, and it wasn’t going to be done sensationally because it seemed like after four years we had such a loyal audience that had come to identify with these characters. We had the opportunity to have an impact as if they were losing a loved one. I thought that was something worth exploring… Each one of us after that conversation had different thoughts about who it should be and then we had misgivings about doing it all. But then when we got back to write the season, I suggested it should be Jeremy and gave the reasons and they jumped on board. They supported it one hundred percent.

On Why Jeremy Was the Soldier Who Died: There was a practical aspect to it, thinking about the ultimate impact on the series. If we killed one of the husbands, than that wife could certainly stick around but no longer has a direct army involvement as a widow. I think that when you do a series of this nature, which is an entertainment vehicle, we take our obligation to the source material very seriously. But we are an entertainment vehicle and, as such, I think we have an obligation to provide a measure of hope and happiness in addition to the tragedy and conflict we present. My judgment was, to kill off Michael (Brian McNamara), to kill off Frank (Terry Serpico) or Chase (Jeremy Davidson) – would have it would have hurt the audience in a way that they couldn’t perhaps recover from? I felt that Jeremy was a fascinating character in that he had come a long way from the pilot in which he was having anger issues and lashing out at his mother physically. [He] turned down the offer of West Point only to find himself enlisting after embarrassing himself, [he] loses his best friend, becomes suicidal, gets the help that he needs, finds a beautiful woman that he falls in love with and he’s going to get married, has a baby sister, has everything in front of him – and then his life is tragically cut short. I thought the impact of that was going to be tremendous but Denise (Catherine Bell) and Frank, thank God, have another child. Tanya’s (Erin Krakow) going to reappear in the series and does have the opportunity to indicate how life goes on [even thought they will] never repair that hole in their hearts. It seemed something that we could work with as a series. It took less tools out of our hands by losing that character than losing other characters.


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