Get excited, "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend" fans: Dearly departed character Greg is returning for the show's final season. But prepare for him to look a bit different.
That's because the role is being recast -- or as the creative team calls it, "reimagined" -- for season four. Skylar Astin ("Pitch Perfect") will be taking over for Santino Fontana ("Frozen"), who last appeared on the show way back in the early days of season two.
So how on earth will the series explain why Greg is suddenly someone else? During an appearance at the Television Critics Association summer press tour, co-creators Rachel Bloom and Aline Brosh McKenna revealed their thought process. The decision was both a logistical solution (they asked Fontana to return, and it didn't work out), and an outlet to explore a new, creative approach to the character.
“With an actor leaving suddenly, it left this exciting gap. His character’s almost become like lore in the show,” Bloom said of the looming presence of Greg. “We have this opportunity to bring back this mythic figure and look at him in a new way.”
That decision is admittedly "a big leap and feels experimental and playful for our show,” Bloom continued, “but as you see when the show airs it will be kind of a great statement on how our perception of people changes. … Greg is a barometer of [that] because Rebecca has not seen him for two years.”
And no, the recasting won't go without some meta commentary, the actress said.
“It’s not a Becky on ‘Roseanne’ situation,” Bloom explained. “Rebecca’s going to call it out and be like, ‘This person is different, what the f—?'”
It sounds totally bonkers, but also totally in keeping with the spirit of "CXG." We trust Bloom and co. to pull it off.
Check out the new (and improved?) Greg when "Crazy Ex-Girlfriend" returns for its farewell season on October 12.