DON’T CALL IT A REBOOT | Without specifically mentioning the aforementioned R-word, Mann notes that this year will bring Revenge “back-to-basics.” This upcoming batch of episodes are “certainly a revisiting of everything people really came to enjoy about the show in Season 1.” Calling this season more “streamlined,” Stowe notes that, “It’s going to really involve the interpersonal relationships of the characters; that’s what the show is intended to be.”
BRINGING SEXY (AND SLUTTY!) BACK | “Aside from his best partner-in-crime Emily — which is really the place where he holds the most love – Nolan’s not looking to get too attached,” Mann teases playfully. “So, we may see a new, slutty phase that he’s going through.” As for the NolCorp helmer’s rarely seen former love Marco, “We haven’t seen him return yet” in Season 3, the scene-stealer shares.
LIKE MOTHER, LIKE SON? | Is Victoria’s long-lost offspring the spitting image of his devious mom? Justin Hartley’s character “is going to be interesting because he appears to be sunny and bright, but this is Revenge, so….” Stowe muses. “I have a feeling that if he comes from Victoria, there is something very warped there!” That said, the mother-son duo are enjoying “a very loving relationship” at the start of the season. (Bonus tease: “Justin’s one of the first people to get his clothes off,” Mann reveals.)
FREEBIRD | Referring to his character’s brush with the law in last season’s finale, Mann jokes, “I think a miserable season of Nolan crying in prison would really not be the path that we’re setting up.” Instead — and along similarly slutty lines, “This [year] is everything we started to do in Season 1, with just a buttload of sex thrown on top of it — which to me was always a missing element. When you’re doing a show like this, you want to see these people get naked. You want to see them mix it up in creative ways.”
STRANGE BEDFELLOWS | Aiden is “in a place he’s not been before” when we next see him, Sloane offers. “He’s ‘in bed with the enemy’ a little bit.” The enemy being? “I have been working with Madeleine a lot,” he laughs. (With reporting by Matt Webb Mitovich)
As part of ABC’s plan to streamline the drama in Season 3, which will be overseen by new showrunner Sunil Nayar, Emily Thorne’s love life is about to get a lot simpler.
“One thing that Sunil and I talked about was really defining her relationship with these men, because it got very muddled,” she reveals. “No one is going to love three men in the same way. We really needed to define: Who does Emily Thorne love?”
And that definition does not include one member of that trio.
“She’s really using Daniel,” she concedes. “It’s unfortunate. There really is not the element of love between Emily and Daniel. It’s part of her plan. Jack and Aiden are her two great loves, for very different reasons. Emily and Aiden understand each other on a totally different level than anyone could ever imagine. And yet the nostalgia and the childhood love and the purity and the wholesomeness of love with Jack is such an appeal to her, too.”
Bottom line: Though there will no longer be a three-way tie for Emily’s affections, the revengenista certainly won’t have it easy. “She’s battling these different emotions of two different men, and yet she’s marrying another one,” she says, laughing. ”It’s incredibly complicated, as always.”
And the Grayson scion’s absence from Em’s heart doesn’t guarantee that his townie rival — who in the season finale learned that Emily was really his childhood pal — will want anything to do with the duplicitous Ms. Thorne… and VanCamp can see why.
“I can say the relationship with Jack is going to be tense for a while, obviously,” the actress acknowledges. “She screwed him real bad, let’s be honest.”
ABC entertainment president Paul Lee conceded to reporters Sunday at the Television Critics Assoc. press tour in Beverly Hills that Revenge “stumbled a bit” in its mythology-heavy second season, adding that new showrunner Sunil Nayar (who replaced series creator Mike Kelley) will “bring to us a slightly less complicated” storyline in Season 3. “The first episode back is a fantastic episode starting with a magnificent hook.”
Other highlights from Lee’s exec session:
NASHVILLE | Lee defended Nashville‘s super-soapy Season 1 car crash climax, calling the twist a “sweet cliffhanger… There’s an impending doom that leads you toward the car crash that is very Nashville.” In Season 2, Connie Britton’s Rayna will “really drive plot,” Lee added. “That particular rivalry with Connie and Hayden[‘s characters] is coming to a head. We’ve only seen a couple of outlines and a script, but we’re really happy with it.”
ONCE UPON A TIME IN WONDERLAND | On the decision to launch the Once spin-off in the fall as opposed to at midseason as a bridge between the first and second half of Once Season 3, “We just fell in love with it. We were looking to build a real block on Thursday of empowered women… This is Alice like you’ve never seen Alice before. She’s a truly kickass Alice.”
DANCING WITH THE STARS | On Maksim Chmerkovskiy returning for the next cycle, “Maks is part of the family; he may well be back [next season].” As for how the competition series will manage with no more results show, Lee would only say that Monday’s two-hour telecasts would “build to a climax at the end” and still involve some combo of judge and viewer votes.
HAPPY ENDINGS | Lee called the beloved comedy’s untimely cancellation “very upsetting,” but noted that the show failed to “attract an audience on its own” after it moved out of the post-Modern Family slot. “We never found in the places that we put it [that] we could [bring] an audience to it. We couldn’t find its sea legs away from a strong lead-in, so that’s how we ended up on that decision.”
GREY’S ANATOMY | The long-running medical soap is not heading into its final season, Lee maintained. “[Shonda Rhimes] is planning a number of [season’s] out… We would like to see it on the network for many years to come.” Lee declined to comment on the future of original castmembers like Ellen Pompeo and Patrick Dempsey (whose contract expire in May), saying, “If I commented on who is coming in and out, I think Shonda would yell at me.”
CASTLE | When asked about Nathan Fillion’s recent unauthorized “day off” from Castle in the midst of a contract squabble with ABC, Lee deflected, “Nathan and Stana [Katic] are fantastic actors. We feel super-optimistic” about Castle‘s future.
SCHEDULING | ABC detailed its split-season schedule for its heavy hitter dramas, revealing that Nashville will return from its winter break on Feb. 26, Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal will resume their runs Feb. 27, and Once Upon a Time and Revenge will come back March 9 — with all of the above finishing their seasons with few or no repeats. (Lee told TVLine that midseason programs such as Tricia Helfer’s Killer Women will fill those midseason gaps.) The new reality series The Quest, meanwhile, will at least temporarily replace Once Upon a Time in Wonderland (Thursdays at 8) starting Jan. 2, while Resurrection will take over for Betrayal (Sundays at 10) on March 9.
The Hamptons is about to welcome Hot Jesus!
Diogo Morgado, who played Jesus Christ on the hit miniseries The Bible, is set to guest star on Revenge‘s upcoming third season, E! News has confirmed.
Morgado will appear in the ABC hit’s Sept. 29 premiere as Dr. Jorge Velez. The Portuguese actor turned heads after History Channel miniseries debuted to 13.1 million viewers and “Hot Jesus” became a worldwide trending topic. Of the trending topic, executive producer Mark Burnett told us, “Listen, whatever attracts the biggest, youngest audience!”
TV Line first reported the news of Morgado’s casting.
Morgado is just the latest new face to be cast for season three. We exclusively reported that Justin Hartley (Smallville, Emily Owens M.D.) has signed on to play the long-lost son of Victoria (Madeleine Stowe), and Pan Am‘s Karine Vanisse will take on the role of a mysterious woman from Daniel’s (Josh Bowman) past.
Not returning for season three? Ashley Madekwe (Ashley) and Connor Paolo (Declan) are not returning as series regulars, while Mike Kelley, the series creator, will not be returning as showrunner with writer Sunil Nayar taking over.
Revenge returns for its third season on Sunday, Sept. 29 at 9 p.m. on ABC.
Karine Vanasse will play Margaux, a French businesswoman and former acquaintance of the Grayson scion’s, in the ABC drama’s upcoming third season, TVLine has learned.
Margaux will be in town to start a magazine (meaning she’s loaded, idealistic, foolish or a combination of the three) and will stick around for a multi-episode arc.
French-Canadian actress Vanasse had the role of orphaned stewardess Colette in ABC’s ill-fated Pan Am.
After the explosive events of the Season 2 cliffhanger, the series returns (with a five-month time jump) on Sunday, Sept. 29.