The Simpsons executive producer Al Jean has revealed that the actor whose character will be killed off doesn’t know about the death.
Last month, Jean revealed that the actor playing the doomed Simpsons character won an Emmy, but wouldn’t say who it was. The Simpsons voice actors have won several Emmys over the course of the show’s run so it wasn’t much of a hint. Oddly enough, the exception is Harry Shearer, who provides the voices of Mr. Burns, Reverend Lovejoy, Dr. Hibbert, and several others. So even though fans are in the dark about which character is getting the axe, apparently the actor is, too.
“They don’t know yet,” Jean told Entertainment Weekly. Jean did say, however, that the character is tentatively scheduled to die next season. Shortly after the announcement of the character’s death, Fox announced that the series had been renewed for a historic 26th season.
“For more than a quarter of a century, The Simpsons has captured the hearts and minds of fans in a way that transcends ages, languages and cultures,” said Fox president Kevin Reilly. “This groundbreaking series is not only the longest-running scripted show in television history, it’s one of the greatest sitcoms of our time, and I’m looking forward to yet another landmark season.”
The Simpsons passed Gunsmoke as the longest-running scripted American sitcom in 2009 when it entered its 21st season. Over 500 episodes have aired since The Simpsons premiered on December 17, 1989.
Al Jean said the character’s death is an “emotional story” and that the manner of death will be “funny.” Jean also said that there will be some red herrings leading up to the season 26 premiere.
“We’ll be putting out a lot of false leads in the coming months to try to trick people into watching the premiere,” he said.
“It’ll be bigger than ‘Who Shot J.R.?’,” Jean added, “but not as big as ‘Who Shot Mr. Burns?'”