What's the future of 'Glee' without Cory Monteith? Show creator Ryan Murphy talks about Cory's death from drug overdose, how Lea Michele is handling the tragedy, and what fans can expect in a tribute episode as well as the rest of this season. %VIRTUAL-Slideshow-2979%
Following the tragic death of Cory Monteith, Glee fans wondered how his death would be explained within the show and how the series would move forward without Finn Hudson.
Glee creator Ryan Murphy spoke with TV Line about the future of the show and how Cory's girlfriend and co-star, Lea Michele, is holding up.
He explained, "Ultimately, we made no decisions without consulting Lea," adding, "She was very adamant that she thought it was best for the cast and crew to get back together sooner [rather] than later...Cory was so beloved that she felt people really needed to be together in this time. So we sort of followed her lead."
Ryan said that they will address Finn's death in the third episode, following the first two episodes which were already written in May.
He said, "[It's] a very difficult episode to write," adding, "[It] has to be done very carefully and with a lot of taste and really making sure that it's a tribute to Cory."
Ryan also explained that they will take a "long writers' hiatus after that episode to refigure the season and continue to take care of the cast and crew and work on setting things up in Cory's honor...because that's something we're dedicated to doing."
Working through Cory's death has been "just a crazy, really difficult, very emotional time," Ryan revealed.
He explained, "I think what we're really trying to do is deal with it as a family, which is what that group of people is. Lea is obviously very grief-stricken but she's also one of the strongest people I know. She wants people to be better and get back to work. So that's what we're going to do."
He admires Lea's strength, saying, "I've never, ever met a 26-year-old girl or boy who's capable of doing what she's done in the past week. I marvel at it. I really have taken--as we all have--our lead from Lea. We won't do anything that she doesn't want to do. We're planning a memorial service this week for the cast and crew and people at Fox, everybody who loved him. She's been planning that and making decisions."
Ryan told E! Online that he really let Lea be "the leader in this situation," noting, "ultimately, everyone involved made the decision, 'OK, what does Lea want to do, what would Lea feel comfortable doing?' This is what she wants to do."
He added that "for now, what we just decided to do is continue on working for the next month so people could really deal with this and not feel isolated and alone. That's something Lea felt strongly about and she really is the one making those decisions. We followed her lead."
Glee will return for its fifth season September 26.
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Gallery | Cory and Lea: A Romance Remembered