Roseanne fans should get ready to see some famous faces when the ABC reboot returns for its 11th season. While series star Roseanne Barr has already dished on her desire to attract some big name guest stars for the upcoming season of her self-titled sitcom, showrunner Bruce Helford confirmed he is also on board with that plan.
In a new interview with Deadline, Helford revealed that he plans to reach out to some of the most famous alumni from the original Roseanne series, which aired on ABC from 1988 to 1997. The Roseanne executive producer said he hopes to get Grey’s Anatomy star James Pickens Jr. back for more episodes as Conner family friend Chuck Mitchell. In addition, Helford is eyeing Roseanne veterans Johnny Galecki and George Clooney as guest stars for the new season of the show, as well as a new role for Sarah Chalke, whose surrogate storyline wrapped last season.
“We’re hoping that, schedules allowing, Chuck and Anne-Marie will return,” Helford said of Roseanne alums James Pickens Jr. and Adilah Barnes.
“And we’re looking at Sarah Chalke and how we’d continue to see her interact with the Conners. We, of course, hope that Johnny Galecki will be back as David, and we’ll reach out to George Clooney and see what he’s up to.”
Bruce Helford went on to say he hopes to wrangle up as many past Roseanne stars as possible for the new season, which will feature an increased episode order.
“I think we’d love to have as many actors from the original back as we can, it’s just a matter of how much we can do in 13 episodes,” the Roseanne EP told Deadline.
In the original Roseanne series, George Clooney had a recurring role as Wellman Plastics supervisor and Jackie’s (Laurie Metcalf) boyfriend Booker Brooks. Clooney’s character disappeared from the show once the actor’s movie career took off, and Barr said George wasn’t interested in returning to the show when the reboot was announced last year. Barr told Sirius radio’s Howard Stern that George Clooney, who currently lives in Italy, “didn’t want to come on — so that was a bummer.” But given the massive success of the Roseanne revival, maybe the A-list star will change his tune.
As for Galecki, the Big Bang Theory star did make a return as David Healy for one episode of the Roseanne reboot. Galecki’s storyline was left open and the popular actor has already expressed an interest in returning to the show for the next season.
Before the Roseanne renewal was announced, Johnny Galecki told TV Line that he “would love to do more” episodes if the ABC comedy was renewed for another season. In addition, Galecki’s TV wife, Sara Gilbert, also revealed that producers are hoping to sign Johnny Galecki for future episodes of the sitcom next year so his relationship with his young son Mark (Ames McNamara) and his new girlfriend Blue can be further explored.
“One of the challenges we had was that we only had Johnny for one episode, so we had to accomplish a lot in 22 minutes,” Gilbert told TV Line last month. “We had spoken at length about the fact that Mark might not recognize David. And that would be [opening up] a whole can of worms. And, with just 22 minutes, we would not have been able to properly serve that storyline. We wanted the focus to be on David and Darlene. But I think it’s certainly a possibility that we’ll see Blue next season.”
The premiere date for the 11th season of Roseanne has not yet been announced by ABC.