As the Forrester clan rallies around dying matriarch Stephanie (Susan Flannery), many fans are wondering what will become of her husband and business partner Eric (John McCook). TV Guide Magazine'sMichael Logan spoke with McCook to get the details.
TV Guide Magazine: This is just as much Eric's story as it is Stephanie's, don't you think?
McCook: It is! When I first heard Susan was retiring [from the role], I went to [exec producer] Brad Bell and said, "What will we do? How do we handle this? What's going to happen to me?" [Laughs] Because, as an actor, it's all about me, of course! But Brad is using this great loss to refocus B&B in a new, really exciting direction. Of course, right now everyone is watching how Stephanie deals with this as the days tick down but in time it very much becomes Eric's story and I'm really excited to have it. This is a huge change for our show and for me, personally. Eric has kind of been in Stephanie's shadow in recent years, even in business. [Laughs] Even in mourning! She won't even let him grieve the way he wants to grieve. She's running everything from the catbird seat, telling everyone how to be sad! But, yeah, Eric will be getting his power back.
McCook also revealed what role Eric will play at Forrester Creations and what it means for the next generation.
TV Guide Magazine: Meaning what? He'll take command of Forrester Creations?
McCook: Well, he's definitely cracking the whip! He'll be pushed forward to be a mentor and disciplinarian to these young people who are creative and good at what they do but don't have the gravitas to handle an international business. They're too busy trying to get laid on Eric's desk! So he's going to start showing them how to run a corporation and that's been really fun to shoot. I've pulled up my bootstraps and am so engaged working with these young actors! It's funny. One of the foreign journalists who covers B&B asked me, "Is the loss of Susan Flannery the beginning of the end for your show?" I said, "You stop right there! This is the end of the first 25 years. This is only the end of the beginning. And now there's a new beginning." But for now the energy and focus has been put on Susan and her wonderful persona. We are so glad to honor and salute who she is. [Laughs] The whole CBS building is resplendent in Susan Flannery glory! This is such a big loss for me. You can't get your mind around it. Two or three months from now, I'll still be showing up at work going, "Where the f--k is Susan?"