Any time you have The Mick star (and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia veteran) Kaitlin Olson and The Last Man On Earth star Will Forte in the same room, you know you’re in for some shenanigans. Add Speechless star Minnie Driver into the mix and you’re really in for a wild ride, as was the case at 20th Century Fox Television’s panel today at Deadline’s second annual Contenders Emmys event, which was replete with awkward pauses, tangents and half-answered questions.
“I feel like a dreadful British addendum,” Driver joked, sidelined on the right side of the auditorium before sitting down next to Forte.
In the panel moderated by TVLine’s Michael Ausiello, the conversation inevitably came around to renewals—The Mick was picked up early by Fox for a second season, leaving Forte and Driver to speculate about the future of their well-received series.
But what have they heard thus far? “Crickets,” Driver said.
A co-production between 20th Century Fox Television and ABC (where it airs) created by Scott Silveri, the series centering on the family of a teenager with cerebral palsy was recognized with a WGA Award nomination in its first year out.
With The Last Man on Earth winding down to its Season 3 finale in May, Forte is similarly in the dark. “I don’t know,” the series creator said. “Until you get that phone call where they say they want you to do more, whatever I hear, who cares? It’s just talk.”
As the series’ fate hangs in the balance, Forte weighed in—tongue firmly in cheek—on what the season finale will offer. “We have left it in a place where, if for some reason we don’t get renewed, it will be the worst last episode of a show ever,” he joked. “It’s like the exact opposite of the Breaking Bad finale.”
Ausiello then raised the question of whether guest star Kristen Wiig will be seen again in the season’s final episodes. “I don’t know,” Forte said. “Yes.”
Per Olson, the upcoming season finale of The Mick will see the return of Christopher (Laird Macintosh) and Poodle (Tricia O’Kelley), breaking into the house in the middle of the night; and discussing Speechless, Driver revealed a “brilliantly meta and beautiful” upcoming plot line where Driver’s ferocious mother Maya helps her disabled son JJ (Micah Fowler) run away from home.
“I’m pissed off that he wants to run away—he wants to establish his independence—and I’m furious that he should be allowed to do everything an able bodied person can do. And if that means he wants to run away from me, then I need to help him,” she said.
During the panel, the comedy creatives commiserated about their own unique brands of OCD, discussing their dream scenarios for numbers of episodes per season. A co-executive producer on The Mick, Olson also touched on the balancing act of performing on two hit comedy series.
“The great thing about Sunny is that I’m just acting on it, so I show up two-and-a-half months out of the year and just act, and it’s fun and easy,” she said. “That’s in the springtime, because it’s on cable, and if we keep getting picked up [on The Mick], hopefully it’ll be in the fall, so it works out to be a year-round kind of thing.”
Anti-climactically, the panel ended with a tangent from Forte, discussing his recent travels, and the benefits of seeing other cultures.
“Thank you, and I’m sorry,” the actor deadpanned.
The Last Man on Earth is executive produced by Forte, Phil Lord, Christopher Miller, Seth Cohen, Andy Bobrow and Erik Durbin.
The Mick was created and written by John Chernin and Dave Chernin, who also serve as co-executive producers on It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. The Chernin brothers, Nicholas Frenkel, Oliver Obst, and Randall Einhorn executive produce.
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