Tag Archives: Linda Gray

Brenda Strong Addresses Victoria Principal ‘Dallas’ Rumors

Forget internet rumors that have Victoria Principal making a surprise appearance on the “Dallas” continuation that TNT is offering up tomorrow (6/13).

“I’m not sure where those rumors were generated.  I do know that she’s not part of our first season,” says Brenda Strong, who segued from “Desperate Housewives” to becoming the current Mrs. Bobby Ewing (Patrick Duffy).  “That doesn’t mean that if we continue on that she won’t be a part in some way.  Our executive producers haven’t denied the possibility of any of the older character coming back”.

As you are likely aware, Larry Hagman and Linda Gray are back, along with Duffy, in addition to brief guest turns by Charlene Tilton and Ken Kercheval.  As far as the new guard, TNT has hit a gusher with the oh-so-watchable Jesse Metcalfe, Josh Hamilton, Jordana Brewster and Julie Gonzalo.

Brenda’s character, Ann, is a perfect fit into theTexasclan.  She and Bobby have been wed seven years as viewers rejoin the action at Southfork Ranch.  “InLos Angeles, that’s a long-term marriage,” she quips.

Brenda says that the new and original cast members bonded so well and spent so much time together while shooting in Dallas, “That long-term friendship of Larry and Linda and Patrick started bleeding over into the rest of us.  We wanted to spend time together, so we did.  I think part of it is that we all got lifted up out of our normal lives and deposited into this magical place half-way across the country.”

Hence, Jesse and Patrick would be out horseback riding together while Brenda and Julie were working on their shotgun skills at the target range.  Cast members went to concerts together, or met to view episodes of the original series.  “Julie had all 14 seasons,” notes Brenda.

As far as whether the zeitgeist is right for Ewings2, she points out, “There are similarities between now and the ’70s.  We’re in an economic crisis, and that’s the climate we had then.  That’s why people love to hate J.R. Ewing — because he’s a man with a lot of money and a lot of immorality.  I think in a lot of ways, it’s a guilty pleasure for those who are struggling to escape to a more rich and decadent environment.  In that respect, we’re right on the money — no pun intended.”

Patrick Duffy Amazed by Response to New ‘Dallas’ — Already

cast of TNT's "Dallas" for 2012

TNT sneaked a teaser of its planned 2012 reboot of “Dallas” last week  — and apparently sparked a colossal commotion among fans of that granddaddy of prime time serials.  “It’s unbeliveable,” Patrick Duffy tells us.  “All around the world, people I’ve had contacts with through the years are already planning how they’re going to have their traditional ‘Dallas’ dinners and parties to watch it.  On the Facebook page, they’re so excited.” reports the actor still remembered as the relatively nice Ewing brother, Bobby. 

 Patrick reports that production is due to begin in October, and he and his wife Carlyn are moving to Dallas for the duration of the first 10-episode season shoot.  As “Dallas” followers are already aware, this time around, much of the action will center on the young generation of the rich and rowdy Texas oil clan (played by Josh Henderson, Jesse Metcalfe, Jordana Brewster and Julie Gonzalo) — with dastardly J.R. (Larry Hagman), his ex-wife Sue Ellen (Linda Gray) and Bobby all still on the scene.

 “The three of us will be integral to the storyline, but not overpoweringly so.  We will be pulling our end of the wagon,” says Duffy.  Brenda Strong of “Desperate Housewives” is playing Bobby’s wife of 15 years, Ann. “We’re already a long-established married couple,” he notes.  As far as his beloved Pam (Victoria Principal), Duffy reminds, “Pam actually died on the show, so her participation was never an option.  It’s the same with Mama and Daddy not coming back.  That’s not to say that certain old cast members won’t appear.”

Hagman, Duffy and Gray have remained close pals since the original “Dallas” finsihed its run in 1991.  According to Duffy, “Over the years we’ve been approached about redoing ‘Dallas’ in some form, but I never read a script that was not laughable, and that includes the feature scripts involving film stars,” none of which ever saw production.  The new “Dallas” Executive Producers Cynthia Cidre (“The Mambo Kings”) and Mike Robin (“The Closer”) “wrote to all three of us simultaneously.  They knew we would talk amongst ourselves first, and we did; we discussed and tore apart the script.  We all knew we were going to do it.  We all felt Cynthia had finally gotten it right and come up with the perfect way to bring ‘Dallas’ into a new generation.  We are totally committed to this project.”

It’s definitely a walk down memory lane kind of time for Duffy, whose first TV movies and series, “The Man From Atlantis,” have been remastered for a new DVD release Tuesday (7/26) through the Warner Archive Collection on-demand online service (www.warnerarchive.com).  Though the show lasted but one season, it gained an avid cult following and proved popular internationally, including in China.  Duffy played an amnesiac amphibious guy who just might be the last citizen of the lost continent of Atlantis. 
 “The most discomforting thing was the lenses in my eyes; they covered the entire eyeball and were put on with suction cups,” he says.  Also, to get an electric green look “they were colored with what was essentially airplane paint and another clear layer of airplane paint covered that.  That was the worst part.  My eyes just burned at the end of the day.  They threw me out in the bay in September, October, November and it had to look like a day in the park, but it was cold,” he recalls.  “I couldn’t do it now, at 62, but, you know, at 28 you’re bulletproof.”

Linda Gray Has a Blast With Fellow Stars of a Certain Age in Big Screen ‘Expecting Mary’

Linda Gray tells us she had a blast making the big-screen “Expecting Mary,” which has an anticipated fall release.  The indie film has a pregnant teen – Oleysa Rulin of “High School Musical” fame – running away and winding up in a trailer park, the denizens of which are a colorful assortment of crazies in their AARP years.  Linda Stars with Elliott Gould, Lanie Kazan, Cybill Shepherd, Cloris Leachman, Della Reese, Fred Willard and Gene Simmons.

“We shot it in 18 days.  Because everybody loved their role, we all came together quickly.  It was like going to party you can’t wait to go to,” says the actress who reigned over the TV scene as Sue Ellen Ewing on “Dallas” back in the 80s.  Gray plays a former Vegas showgirl “whose last gig was in New Mexico.  She’s funny and pathetic – and still can be glamorous.”

Linda Gray

Linda was also instrumental in getting “Expecting Mary” made.  She’d gotten to know screenwriter Dan Gordon when “we both bought the rights to ‘Terms of Endearment’ as a play, which I did in London about eight years ago.  During that time we talked about what fun it would be to come up with something more comedic than Sue Ellen or Aurora, the part I played in ‘Terms,’ and we started throwing out ideas.”

Gordon eventually wrote “this miraculous screenplay” for “Expecting Mary” as a result.  The fact that the movie put so many talents of a certain age to work is, of course, one of Gray’s favorite parts of the enterprise, since all of her cast mates – save Olesya, of course – have had to face unapologetic Hollywood ageism.  “We approached it with a lot of humor.  We made a pact: Nobody under 50 allowed.:”

MEANWHILE:  Asked about the chances of any more on-camera “Dallas” reunions, Gray is quick to respond, “Oh, God no.  Unless something very classy came along, we’re through.”

That’s not to say, however, that the “Dallas” cast is through getting together on their own.  Linda says that she and Larry Hagman and Patrick Duffy got together just a matter of weeks ago when Duffy was in town from his Oregon home for a “Bold and the Beautiful” appearance, and it’s not unusual that they and other former cast mates meet for “long lunches or dinners.  One of the joys of doing ‘Dallas’ was the enduring friendships.  We’ve known each other 33 years.  We text each other now.  Our kids have us all using iPhones.”

MAKING ADJUSTMENTS:  Terry Crews admits that having his and his family’s lives opened for the world to see on their “The Family Crews” reality show has been an adjustment for everyone.  With Season 2 of the BET show now in production, he recalls that when the first season began to air, “We got off Facebook and all that stuff.  We retreated.  We felt like, ‘Hey, if you want to know something about us, watch the show.’  There has to be a boundary, a limit.  You start to feel like you don’t have any privacy at all.”

According to him, they have bumped into “a couple of people” who’ve been negative.  “And you’re like, ‘Eh!  They don’t like me.’  But the thing is, most of the people we encounter are fans and they’re nice.  It’s fun to talk to them.”

Crews, who’s also starring in the series version of TNT’s “Are We There Yet?” says “We’re pretty excited about Season 2” of the reality skein.  “On our show, the drama doesn’t come from me versus my wife, or us versus the kids.  We’ve decided we’re going to stick together, to have each other’s back.  When my daughter announced she was pregnant, that was a really big family issue.”  Obviously, baby on board will be a theme this coming season.