Producers and stars from Fox’s “The Following” revealed details on the scrapped alternate ending to Season 2 and what’s to come on Season 3.
Stars Kevin Bacon, Shawn Ashmore, Sam Underwood and Jessica Stroup joined creator/executive producer Kevin Williamson and executive producers Marcos Siega and Jennifer Johnson at San Diego Comic-Con on Sunday.
The panel started with the fabled alternate ending, which was shot then scrapped for the one that actually aired. Even the stars had no idea which ending would air. It finds twin Luke (Underwood) shooting and killing big bad Joe (James Purefoy). Meanwhile, Ryan (Bacon) and Joe share a moment before life slips from the mass serial killer.
Williamson said the ending that aired had one big difference from the one that didn’t. Joe can still return now, though he won’t be the focus of Season 3 and may not even appear. The same is true for Claire (Natalie Zea), who broke it off with Ryan last season, encouraging him to move on.
“Season 3 has always been a reset,” Williamson said. “We have a brand new story for you regardless.”
And move on is exactly what Ryan does on Season 3.
“He will truly be in a better place in his life,” Kevin said. “He’s open to real and lasting relationships. We jump ahead again and we see a man who’s a little more at peace.”
His new love is Gwen, a doctor with a daughter. “Ryan is trying some domesticity,” Bacon added.
In Joe’s place will be a “Bigger, badder more complicated person,” said producer Johnson. She described the next season as “more creepy and more Hitchcockian. It’s more about what you don’t see.”
Mark will be one of the threats to Ryan’s happiness.
“Mark will be hiding in plain sight and will have transformed himself,” Johnson teased. “He appears where you’d never expect him within the first half hour of the [premiere episode].
Ryan isn’t totally over Joe. When we meet him, he will be checking every case for signs of the killer or his followers. Then, something will happen in New York City that will cause everyone to live in fear. That drives Ryan to request a task force be created to explore the threat.
The producers said that Season 2 will focus more on the anatomy of a follower and how it might happen. That brings us to Mike (Ashmore), who will be dealing with the growing darkness inside of him. That will become a challenge to his relationship with Ryan’s niece, Max (Stroup).
And as for the mysterious person driving the SUV with Mark and his dead brother? “It will be a character we haven’t seen yet,” Williams revealed.