Twenty years after Dallas fans were nearly forced to say goodbye to Larry Hagman‘s J.R. Ewing after contract negotiations led to the infamous “Who Shot J.R.?” episode, audiences will indeed have to bid farewell to the character following the star’s passing Friday. But questions surround when and how J.R. Ewing — a character who headlined the original series for over 350 episodes — will be removed from TNT’s Dallas reboot.
Prior to his passing, Hagman was in the midst of filming Season 2 of the modern-day spin-off, and had shot approximately six episodes, according to Deadline. Season 2 of the series — which co-stars Dallas alums Patrick Duffy and Linda Gray and new cast members Jesse Metcalfe and Jordana Brewster — is scheduled to air Jan. 28, but Deadline speculates the Thanksgiving-fueled holiday hiatus might be extended following Hagman’s death to determine how to write out J.R. TNT has not yet responded to Hollywood.com’s request for comment regarding its schedule.
That said, the Dallas crew is accustomed to making quick changes — writers were forced to create two pilot scripts when Hagman’s initial participation in the series was in question thanks to contract discussions. The series also rewrote scripts as a contingency plan after Hagman announced his cancer diagnosis in 2011.
[Image Credit: Bill Matlock/TNT]