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The Celebrity Apprentice
Oct 31 2011, 05:00 PM by Karen Wilkinson
It's a big year for Bones fans as the two main characters in the show (played by Emily Deschanel and David Boreanaz), who previously weren't an official couple despite years of will-they-won't-they, are suddenly expecting a baby together. Executive Producers Hart Hanson and Stephen Nathan talked to GlobalTV.com about some of the new changes this season will bring for Booth, Brennan, and the rest of the Jeffersonian team.
At the start of the new season, we’re seeing how Booth and Brennan are interacting and how it’s affecting the show. How did you make sure the balance of the show stayed intact while adding that relationship in?
SN: I think to us, it was somewhat organic. We just continued to write Booth and Brennan in the same way, which were two completely disparate characters who agreed on very little on the surface. Only now, they’re dealing with a pregnancy and a relationship. So, it really seemed to be a natural extension of the previous six years of Bones.
HH: We knew that Booth and Brennan would get together euphemistically in season 6 and we knew that it would be over the death of a beloved Squintern and then, we sort of got this big gift. Stephen and I used to talk about this all the time: “Well, what happens next? What does it look like? What replaces unrequited, sexual tension? What interesting dynamic replaces that?”
And it’s a tough one. And we talked about it at great length and then, the gods intervened and Emily came and said, “I’m pregnant.” At that moment we knew what replaced sexual tension was an actual human being.
SN: Also, I think what we really wanted to avoid more than anything was to have a couple madly in love with each other, because to me that’s always going out to dinner with a couple who have just met and make out all through dinner. And you want to kill them and never have dinner with them again. So we wanted to avoid that dinner. And we successfully did. We have a couple who we can invite over every week for dinner and they’re great company.
Could you talk about the stories of some of the supporting characters?
H: TJ [Thyne] is angling to be the lead of the show. He had so many ideas. He is a really good writer and director if you check out his work on YouTube. So he has tons of ideas and man, as an actor, he’s up for anything. But, well what do we want to admit to?
SN: We can admit to we’re going to hear a little bit about his grandfather and see him kind of dive in, in episode six with our new resident villain. Kind of dive in as only Jack Hodgins can, and in adding a bit of conspiracy and a bit of code breaking.
HH: And, we have a story in our pocket about TJ — Hodgin’s brother. But, it’s in my mind, and Stephen may talk me out of this, in my mind it’s attached to a piece of casting that I can’t imagine doing it without this piece of casting attached to it. So, we have to wait and see if that happens and no, I would never admit who it is.
SN: There’s a lot of Angela and Hodgins in the first six, actually. And so we learn more about them than we ever have before as well. And Billy Gibbons returns.
HH: And babies do tend to drag relatives out of the woodwork, so we have some. I think, actually Booth and his grandfather and his father’s story in the first six is maybe one of the best episodes of Bones ever, certainly an amazing performances by David Boreanaz and I’m dying for everyone to see. And that has family attached. And also, Stephen, I don’t know if we should admit too, but we think we have a pretty good idea for who should take care of the baby.
SN: Yes, I think that’s something that we can keep to ourselves—because that’s after the first six. But it’ll be a lot of fun, yes.
What’s going on with Cam this season besides hiring the new Squintern?
SN: Well, so far in the first six, a lot has to do with the new intern and her juggling the lab with this new dynamic. You know, with Brennan being pregnant and still trying to maintain a functioning lab. She is going to have–
HH: And she still has daughter problems.
SN: Yes, there’s going to be a lot more for Cam in the second half of the year. We have all of that planned out now. A lot of stuff with her daughter. Um, she also is going out with a doctor still. So, all of that is going to be explored in the second half of the season when we come back, but we just had so much to do with Booth and Brennan that it was very, very difficult to service everybody as much as we would like. We keep asking the network—the network will only give us an hour. I don’t know why.
How do you keep up with changes in real forensics and investigation techniques? How do they impact the writers?
HH: There’s a writers' room full of smart writers who are digging through stuff all the time and I have a bin full of technological ideas. One of the writers seems to come in with cool technology.
SN: There’s a group of them. They come in with new equipment that has just been developed and new investigatory techniques. It’s a remarkable group of people, because they will come to us and say, “Well, you know, this person could have been murdered, actually in another galaxy.” It’s crazy.
HH: Yes, I have to credit that to the writers’ room, because I don’t know about you Stephen, but I’m certainly not looking for new forensics techniques in my down time.
SN: No. No, no, no. I would say that 90 per cent of the stuff that we do in the show is completely real and scientifically accurate. We might stretch or shrink the time as necessary, but the science is correct and usually is mind-boggling to us.
HH: Yes, and we get links all of the time to journals and new forensic techniques and scientific techniques. I happen to send them immediately up to the writing room. I don’t even read them because it makes my head hurt, but now I just send them up to the writers’ room and they churn those things out. They’re an amazing group of people.
When are you starting production back up again?
SN: We start back on December 1.
HH: Yes, Emily is doing great. She is really healthy. The baby is really healthy. We always thought there was a chance that Emily might say, “You know what I’ll come back in the New Year. Just give me through Christmas.” But she is coming back. Our best case scenario had her coming back to shoot in December and that’s going to happen.
SN: Yes, that’ll happen. So, we’re going back middle of November to gear up production and write like the wind and then, she’ll be back. It’s a wonderful new episode.
So Emily is no longer pregnant, but in episode six before the hiatus Brennan is still pregnant. How will you handle that?
SN: In episode seven, yes, she is still pregnant.
HH: Yes, she is still pregnant, but we won’t say for how long.
The show has juxtaposed religion and science. Will this be an issue with Booth and Brennan having the baby together, raising it in the church, getting it baptized, etc?
HH: Oh, I would say so. Wouldn’t you Stephen?
SN: Oh, yes, we’re still playing that. They’re going through all of those huge issues that any couple goes through when they’re having a baby, so you know—
HH: And the stakes are raised. They used to have these kind of theoretical arguments about God versus science. Well, now the stakes are raised. It has to do with the upbringing and shaping of a human being. So, that’s what I mean about it being such a gift to us. It’s like, “Oh wow! This brings a whole new level to the disagreements these two radically different people have about the way the world works and where people fit in the world.”
SN: And you will see that in the first episodes and also I can, without telling you anything at all, say episode seven is that big time. Yes, they’re dealing with that issue in a pretty intense way.
Are there any new Finder crossovers to report?
HH: I’m crossing my fingers right now, but we shot a show in which Sweets came down to take part in an investigation and evaluate Walter through the FBI and right now, we’re closing in on having a conspiracy theory episode in which the ideal character, of course, is Jack Hodgins to come down and be dueling conspiracy theorists with Walter. The idea is really funny. We just have to make sure that TJ is available and that it fits into his schedule, but it’s looking pretty good for that, and we want to do one more. We want to do one more. We don’t know what it is yet.
Bones season 7 premieres Thursday, November 3 at 9.00 et/pt.